Toastmaster Guide

For those of you assigned as a Toastmaster for an upcoming meeting, your role is very important.  “The main duty of the Toastmaster is to act as a genial host and conduct the entire program, including introducing participants.” The Vice President of Education sets the schedule in advance and works with the club members to fill roles in advance. He/She provides support in a variety ways and you can rely on him/her to provide you support materials, training, coaching, and other support.     The role of the Toastmaster is important to our club as it impacts how members and guests experience our club. The purpose of this guide to help you lead a successful Toastmaster meeting.

Below are the Toastmaster responsibilities for our club:

Before the Meeting

Know the Schedule and Functionaries.  Once you are confirmed as a Toastmaster, contact functionaries and speakers to confirm and prepare them for the meeting.  Once you are listed as the Toastmaster, you can make adjustments and additions to the schedule for that week.

Notify the Club and Functionaries. Contact all your functionaries by Tuesday or Wednesday.. .  When sending out an email to the club, ask everyone who has a role to confirm their participation by Friday.  Here is the suggested language:

“Greetings Fellow Toastmasters.  I am your Toastmaster for next Monday. The schedule is attached below.  Our theme is __________. If you have a role in the club, please confirm your participation with me by Friday.  Our General Evaluator is _________ and will be confirming the participation of the Evaluators  Speakers,  please provide me with your:

Speech Title


Project Number and Title

Speech Length

Biography (no more than a paragraph (3-5 sentences)

If you are the Table Topics Master or General Evaluator, please provide me with an introduction/biography.  If you have any questions, please email me or contact me at_________. Thank you”

Follow-up and Confirm.Some people may not respond very well to email and conducting follow-up phone calls will help you solidify functionaries.   Make adjustments to the schedule and let those who cannot participate to find a replacement.  For newer members assigned functionaries, encourage them to review information provided in their manual and our website.

Check in with the President. Call or email the President or presiding officer to discuss the business meeting portion.  Check to see if there are any special items or issues to be discussed that may result in a longer business meeting.

Plan the Program.When it comes to the theme, be creative. you have the opportunity to create a fun and interesting meeting atmosphere. For instance if our upcoming meeting has a holiday theme, you can come up with ways to make our club meeting fun and engaging.  Some Toastmasters have made it fun by decorating the room with images of the theme or bringing giveaways to increase participation and bring a high level of enthusiasm or energy to the meeting.

Prepare the Agenda.Using the agenda template posted on our website at provided to you, prepare the agenda for the upcoming meeting.  Make sure people’s names are spelled correctly and their Toastmasters designations are listed properly.

Print Agenda.  Once you have completed the agenda, make copies of the agenda and bring them to the meeting.

Prepare Your Biography.It is important that you also prepare a biography so that you can be properly introduced by the President or presiding officer of the meeting.

The Day of the Meeting

  1. Arrive Early:Arrive at least 30 minutes before the meeting to set up.
  1. Prepare Materials for Functionaries.  The Sergeant at Arms brings our club materials. There are scripts for the Timer, Ballot Counter, Ah Counter, and Grammarian.
  1. Give Your Biography/Introduction to the President.When the President or presiding officer arrives, give them a copy of your biography/introduction.
  1. Confirm Your Functionaries and Participants.Make sure your functionaries and participants are in attendance at the meeting. If there are some “no shows”, work with the Vice President of Education to help you identify replacements.  Collect introductions from speakers or others who have not provided you with a biography or introduction.
  1. Conduct and Manage the Meeting.Follow the agenda you prepared. As the Toastmaster, you are to manage the time and agenda.  You may need to make adjustments in the event that the business meeting or a speaker goes over their time.


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