My Toastmasters Series – Part VIII

This is the last post of my Toastmasters series. With my stories, I have shared my experience and written about different topics related to Toastmasters and public speaking, including feedback and mentorship. In this last article, I want to tell you about my Toastmasters club in particular: West London Speakers.

Photo by Victor Cudjoe on Unsplash

You won’t be surprised to learn that West London Speakers is a club based in West London, Hammersmith in particular. The club was founded on the 24th April 2006, so it’s coming to its 15th birthday soon. The meetings used to take place every two weeks on Monday evening in…


My Toastmasters Series – Part VII

Have you ever felt the need to improve your public speaking skills but found it too daunting to even get started?

In this post, the second to last of my Toastmasters series, I will share my personal experience as a Toastmasters member and how I approached my learning path to become a better public speaker.

When I joined my Toastmasters club, just over a year ago, I was aware I had to improve in a lot of different areas of public speaking. I knew because I wasn’t new to it. I had done several presentations at work and I had…


My Toastmasters Series – Part VI

In this post, the 6th of my Toastmasters series, I will focus on mentorship. Mentorship is one of the multiple benefits of joining a Toastmasters club, and it’s also an extremely powerful tool in any area of your life where you’re trying to learn and grow, be it at work, with one of your hobbies or in life in general.

During my Toastmasters journey, as part of one of my assignments, I had to prepare a speech about mentorship and share my experience as a protégé. At the time, I hadn’t been exposed to the idea of mentorship too much…


My Toastmasters Series – Part V

Have you ever found yourself in that difficult situation where someone asked you a challenging and unexpected question and you didn’t know where to start? Imagine a situation like an important business meeting at work or a job interview. Or even an intense conversation with your partner or a friend. In situations like these, most of us would either freeze or start saying long ehms not knowing what to say and trying to buy some time.

Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash

Imagine instead if you were able to keep it together, think on your feet and respond to the question decisively and assertively, being able…


My Toastmasters Series – Part IV

In this post, the 4th of my Toastmasters series, I will focus on feedback. I will explain how feedback is one of the key elements of Toastmasters and why it is extremely important to me. I will also share some tips on giving and receiving feedback both from Toastmasters International and my personal experience.

Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

Some say “feedback is the breakfast of champions”. I like to say “feedback is like a gift we give each other”. The concept is the same. Feedback is an indispensable tool we all need to learn how to use if we want to learn and grow…


My Toastmasters Series – Part III

In this post, the 3rd of my Toastmasters series, I’ll go through the different components of a speech and tell you how to deliver a memorable speech.

One of the things I learned during my experience as a Toastmaster member, is to break down a speech into 3 different components. I use this approach both when I am preparing my own speeches and when I am evaluating someone else’s. These components are structure, content, and delivery.

A clear structure is paramount if you want to make sure your message is conveyed effectively and your audience is left with some meaningful…


My Toastmasters Series – Part II

In this post, the 2nd of 8 in my Toastmasters series, I will tell you more about Toastmasters: what it is, how it works and why you should consider joining a club.

Toastmasters International is a non-profit educational organisation created in 1924 that operates clubs worldwide for the purpose of promoting communication, public speaking and leadership¹. As of today, there are more than 364000 members in more than 16200 clubs in 145 countries.

A club is a group of people who meet on a regular basis; it’s a friendly environment where you can practice your speaking skills and get plenty…


My Toastmasters Series – Part I

Until a couple of years ago, I wasn’t particularly passionate about blogging. I was reading articles on Medium every now and then to learn new things, but I would never consider myself as someone who had anything interesting or innovative to share. But then in the last two years, something has changed and I have been publishing articles every couple of months.

So what’s changed? What convinced me to open up and share my thoughts, feelings and passions with the community?

In 2019, I only published two articles on things I had learned and done at work, mostly related with…


A personal story about music and dreams

It’s the end of April 2011. I am in Palermo, my hometown. I’m on a very large stage of a theatre, where I have already been several times to watch movies or concerts. But this time for this specific concert I am going to be on stage, playing for the audience with my bass guitar. The event is only 2 days away. I’m in the middle of one of the last rehearsals. I am on stage with a full-size symphony orchestra from my hometown’s conservatory and my rock band, the Flowerstone. We are playing Concerto for group and orchestra, one…


And why we should call it mental fitness

The title of my article may look a little controversial. If you’re thinking “what does he mean by that?”, it means I achieved my goal.

The expression mental health and the language used when people talk about it makes me want to roll my eyes. Don’t get me wrong, I am very happy that finally people do talk about this theme openly and it’s not seen as a taboo anymore.

However, in the collective imagination mental health is still something that relates to people who have problems and need support, whereas I strongly believe that everyone should invest in their…

Andrea Marchello

Passionate engineering manager with a strong technical background and a genuine interest in Agile leadership and Lean principles. Musician as a hobby.

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