This was my 4th speech from the Toastmasters International Competent Communication manual. This particular speech is all about “feedback.” Related: Toastmasters Speech #1, Toastmasters Speech #2, Toastmasters Speech #3.

My objectives were:

  • Select the right words and sentence structure to communicate your ideas clearly, accurately, and vividly.
  • Use rhetorical devices to enhance and emphasize ideas.
  • Eliminate jargon and unnecessary words. Use correct grammar.
  • Time: 5-7 minutes.

At Toastmasters, everyone is given 2-3 comment cards to fill out for each prepared speech for the day. These cards allow the audience to provide feedback for the speaker. Each audience member is allowed to provide whatever feedback they deem necessary.

As I was reading the feedback comments from my last speech, and the idea for this speech dawned on me.

I realized, that I greatly enjoy feedback. It’s necessary for growth, it helps me improve, and enables me to focus on objective ways to be better at public speaking.

Feedback is technically spelled with one “A,” however, by spelling it with three “A’s,” it helps me ensure that the feedback I receive is useful.

Mentally, I spell feedback like this: “feedbAAAck.” The three A’s are – Acceptance, Action, and Assessment

  • Acceptance – for feedback to be useful, I must accept that I have areas of improvement as a speaker
  • Action – implementing and executing on the feedback turns the advice into real improvement. Taking action is the only way to test, or assess, whether the feedback was fruitful or not.
  • Assess – Now I can evaluate whether or not the feedback was conducive to my growth as a speaker. If it was, great. Now I can focus on improving something else. If it was not, that’s okay, too. Not all feedback is going to be helpful. It’s important to assess how the feedback made a difference then adjust accordingly.

While this speech was catered towards my experience as a public speaker at Toastmasters, I promise you that feedback is useful in every aspect of life. Feedback is path to accelerated growth.

Instead of continuously trying to figure out whether or not something works, you can obtain feedback from a trusted source. That adviser can leverage their wisdom and experience to point you in the right direction.

Whether you enjoyed the speech, or hated it, please feel free to comment your thoughts…or feedback on this speech.