Dear Ah Counter,

the following guidelines will help you prepare for your role:

The purpose of this role is to make the speakers conscious of different irrelevant sounds they make and irrelevant words they use and to practise leadership skills and constructive evaluation.

You will use a sound device (if the club does so) to show when the speakers produce unwanted sounds and then point to individual speakers in your report and say what inappropriate sounds they made.

You are expected to give a clear and useful report on the use and abuse of inappropriate sounds in the Evaluation Session, so:

PRIOR TO THE MEETING

You should

  • remember about a sound device,
  • prepare a brief explanation of your duties for the benefit of guests,
  • think how to structure your presentation in the Evaluation Session.

UPON ARRIVAL AT THE MEETING

You should

  • consult with the Speaker of the Evening if they want you to use the sound device during their speech,
  • collect the sound device if there is any.

If there are guests,

You should

  • ask the guests if they approve of being disturbed by the sound device.

DURING THE MEETING

You should

  • be ready to explain clearly and briefly your role (the purpose and the activities) and demonstrate the sound device,
  • if the Toastmaster of the Evening has forgotten, remind them that you should demonstrate the device you will use to indicate irrelevant sounds,
  • observe the speaker and if they get too confused stop making sounds or you will reinforce the speaker’s fear of speaking, and simply note down the irrelevant sounds,
  • listen carefully to all people who participate in the meeting,
  • write down what irrelevant sounds or words speakers use,
  • be careful to recognize rhetoric devices like dramatic pauses, etc., when you should not use the sound device,
  • when you give your report, point to individual speakers to make them aware what kind of irrelevant noises or unnecessary words they use or how well they control those sounds,
  • give practical advice, if something needs improvement, say how it could be done,
  • announce the winners during the awards session – the people who used the irrelevant sounds the least often (if the club does so) / or hand in the names of the winners to the TM,
  • if the club levies fines :), state who is to be fined for using irrelevant sounds the most often / or hand in the names of the fined members to the TM.

AFTER THE MEETING

You should

  • return the sound device to the Sgt.

IDEAS

Illegal sounds to listen for:

  • ‘ah, um, er’, etc.,
  • the noises people make after swallowing, clicking tongues or smacking.

Illegal words to listen for:

  • ‘I mean, I mean; yes, well, yes, well’ etc.