Keep an Open Mind

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Keep an Open Mind

Tom Marino, DTM - District 46 DirectorDear Toastmasters and Friends,

As our Toastmasters year progresses, I am finding much energy and enthusiasm throughout our district. Members are stepping up to assist, more clubs and members are seeing the importance of having quality meetings and the friendly competition which exists in our contests is very overwhelming.

Despite this great movement in our district, there is still more to achieve. What more can we do, you may ask?

Here are a few simple tips to help your members and clubs achieve more:
  1. Keep an open-mind to new ideas that your club members suggest.
  2. Be generative by having a mindset that is creative, open to new ideas and allows for initiative.
  3. Lose the mindset that is closed, guarded and defensive that protects what one has and the knowledge one possesses. I think we all tend to be close-minded to a certain degree.
  4. Be generous. Generosity allows for openness, honesty and achievement.

Allow me to share with you a real-life example where these 4 tips were followed. When I was 12 years old, I had a snow shoveling business with a steady client base of elderly folks in my neighborhood who were not capable of shoveling their walks. I was doing quite well financially that winter as a 12-year-old. My best friend at the time decided that he would try to get into the neighborhood snow shoveling business, too. I immediately closed my mind to his venture. “Why was he doing this and stealing my business”, I asked myself. His business started to flourish and he eventually was making more money than me. Since we were still friends, we talked to each other about our booming ventures. We decided to take a generative approach to our businesses and joined to consolidate into one business and work together. In doing this, we were both generously awarded with significantly more profits than each of us made doing it alone.

Let’s look at your own clubs. Does your club have a close-minded culture or a generative culture?

Be honest. If it’s close-minded, lose that mind-set. By taking the open-minded approach, you will increase the likelihood of your club flourishing in member growth and achievement. Your members will be generously rewarded with achievements that you never thought could happen. Keep an open-mind to all new ideas. You have nothing to lose but a closed mind!

Tom Marino, DTM
District Director, 2016 – 2017
Connect, Grow, Achieve