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This evening it was a treat listening to TM Sudhir Menon delivering “MOMENTS OF TRUTH” at Al Nahda TM Club and thereafter eating fish/potato snacks brought in by a member TM was the “Moments of Truth”. 

I was reminded of my Grand Mother – god bless her soul she is no more.  She was a very lively lady running a joint family of 6 sons and a daughter.   It is a big joint family and whenever we visited her I would see a continuous stream of visitors during the day.  And my Grandmother was never tired of being the perfect host.  But sometime it irritated her sons.

If someone appeared on the doorsteps she would gladly invite them inside the house and offer juice or Tea.  Rule # 1 was no visitors casual or otherwise should leave from the door.

And if the visitor was a close acquaintance she would greet her with a mile long smile and invite her inside the house.  If he was a first time visitor he would be given the tour of the house and then made comfortable on bed made of jute rope (In Punjabi this bed is called Manjee) spread in the verandah. He would be served Tea, juice followed by the meal of the day.  The kitchen was a 24 hours routine with Tea on the fire.

She would listen intently to the guest and enquire about guest’s kins by name. Narrate them the stories and when it was time to leave she would pack few parathas or achar for the guest and entreat them to visit sooner.    She did not go to school but by the current standards she had a Phd in the “Art of Hospitality.”   And when I look back I am not surprised that people loved to visit my Grandmother’s house. And perhaps that was one of the reason that she kept the joint family together.

She was a perfect embodiment of “Moments of Truth.”   When I dissect her routine, it reflects the secret recipe of winning and retaining members in toastmasters Program.  And if I may dissect it into a “10”  point program; it will reflect…

  1. No Guest should leave your meeting without getting the VIP treatment.  Guests are the life line of club because they reflect membership growth.
  2. When Guest walks in he is greeted with a mile long smile and welcomed.
  3. Guest is taken around and introduced to the Excom and other members of the club and left in the company of a senior member to take care.  Guest is never left unattended and offered Tea/Coffee first.
  4. Give a patient hearing to the Guest conversation.
  5. Guest is made comfortable by asking questions of his interest.
  6. Guest is narrated success stories of the members’ growth.
  7. Guest is given the snap shot of Toastmasters program
  8. Guest is asked to join or asked to return for the next meeting and his contact details taken.
  9. Guest feedback is requested, formal or informal and documented.
  10. Create a guest kit and hand it over to him after the meeting.

The ultimate objective is to make your guest feel at HOME; after all Toastmasters are a BIG JOINT FAMILY.

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