Guide: Toastmaster of the Evening (TME)


Taking on this role improves organizational skills, time management skills and public speaking skills.

This guide describes general responsibilities of the role.

Download and print this Toastmaster guide & checklist to use to prepare before the meeting, to do upon arrival at the meeting and during the meeting.

About the role

The Toastmaster is a meeting’s director and host. A member typically will not be assigned this role until they are sufficiently familiar with the club and its procedures.

As Toastmaster, you:

  • Acquire a meeting agenda from your VP Education
  • Work with the General Evaluator to ensure all club participants know their roles and responsibilities
  • Introduce speakers during the club meeting
  • Ensure smooth transitions between speakers during the club meeting

The main duty of the TME is to act as a genial host and conduct the entire program, including introducing participants.

Programme participants should be introduced in a way that excites the audience and motivates them to listen. The TME creates an atmosphere of interest, expectation, and receptivity.

Remember that performing as TME is one of the most valuable experiences you may have. The assignment requires careful preparation in order to have a smoothly run meeting.

Before the meeting

Contact all Speakers and members with assigned roles who have not yet confirmed one week before the meeting. Continue to chase them up courteously until the meeting.

Update the meeting page on easySpeak whenever someone declines or accept a meeting role.

During the meeting

Preside with sincerity, energy, and decisiveness. Take your audience on a pleasant journey and make them feel that all is going well.

Always lead the applause before and after each handover.

Remain standing near the lectern after your introduction until the speaker has acknowledged you and assumed control of the meeting; then be seated.

Your introduction [max: 3 mins]

  • agenda (prepared speeches, impromptu speeches, evaluations) + any changes to the printed agenda
  • explain each meeting is different because the role-holders are different each time – that is how we work through communication and leadership projects
  • theme (if there is one)
  • protocol: emphasise slips
    • encourage everyone to fill in each part (even guests)
    • write your name on feedback slip so speaker can follow-up
    • give feedback slips to Speakers during the break or at the end of the meeting
    • slips also used for voting
  • timekeeping – point out the clock facing the front for role-holders
  • introduce Timer & Grammarian

How to introduce speakers

By default, the agenda will not include the time for you to introduce each Speaker with personal information on your theme. If you want to include themed introductions, let the VPE know before the Monday of the meeting so that they can remove a minute for every Speaker from the break.

It’s nice to end your introduction with the Speaker’s name so that people applause their name, not the speech title.

With his speech “The Big Kahuna,” please welcome Joe!

A note about voting

When the agenda includes a mix of speeches from the Competent Communicator, the Pathways Education Programme and Advanced Speech manuals, ask people to vote on the Best Speaker according to who best met their speech objectives.

Draw attention to members to Most Improved speaker when asking people to vote for Best Speaker.

How to contact members

Log in to easySpeak and click on a member’s name to send them a message.


The VP Education will:

  • create the agenda
  • send you a draft agenda the weekend before the meeting
  • send the latest agenda to the club mailing list two days before the meeting
  • print the agenda for the meeting

Anything unclear? Ask the VP Education.