A Typical Rostrum Club 19 Meeting

We are the best Rostrum breakfast club in Perth!  Yes, we are the only breakfast club!

We meet on Friday mornings, and every meeting is different. This is the office.


That said, they basically have a familiar structure.

Here is a typical agenda, that is sent out to members before the meeting:

Typical Club Agenda

The Place and Time

You see, we meet in Queen Street, in the city at 7:15AM on Fridays.  This doesn’t change.

The Chairperson

We have a chairperson who runs the meeting. This gives them practice chairing a meeting. To be a good chairperson there’s a number of skills to learn.  Not only that, in the old days, meetings were formal, and people raised motions and they were seconded, there were speakers for and against and there was amendments etc.  Local government council meetings still operate in this manor.  We do practice this type of meeting sometimes at our club, but usually our meetings are run in a contemporary fashion.  Believe it or not – this actually makes things slightly trickier, because there are kind of no rules.  There is however a lot of best practices. You’ve probably been to a lot of meetings and know a good one from a bad one.  There’s skill in consistently running good meetings.

The Coach

We have a coach who will take notes during the meeting and deliver a review of the meeting speech towards the end.  The coach has been accredited, is generally from another club, talks about what has happened in the meeting, how each person’s speech was delivered, what they did well, what could be improved, and demonstrates how that could be done.

The Speeches

Vocal Warmup

On the above agenda, Mathew is doing a Vocal Warmup speech.  It is up do Mathew what he wants to do.  Typically the group will do an activity together, like:

1) A tongue twister – like peter piper picked a pepper…
2) Some poetry verses –  like row, row your boat…
3) vocal exercises etc  (There’s lot of these on the Internet…)

Bright Spot

Mitchell is doing a Bright Spot.  This is usually a story, about what has happened recently to the speaker, that has “made their day”.  Something nice that’s happened.  It’s just a light speech.

Meeting Procedure Exercise

Clinton is doing a motion as part of a “Meeting Procedure Exercise” activity.  This is what I was talking about above where there are motions, seconders, amendments etc.  It is up to the Chairperson to know the rules, and be able to make sure that everyone is able to express their views without someone dominating the debate etc  (like might happen in Parliament…).  The motion is usually topical, and is not binding on the club.  So, for example the motion could be “That Club 19 hold a raffle next week to raise funds for our Clinton’s daughter’s primary school.”.  So, the idea is that the motion is a bit whimsical, so people don’t take it too seriously.  Some may agree with the motion, saying we should help out the school and Clinton’s daughter.  Others may say that it’s not rally relevant to club members, and there are better causes to donate to, and try to amend the motion to that effect.  Anyway, it can be a lot of fun if it’s not taken too seriously.  But, at the same time everyone is practicing the meeting procedure rules.

Club Business

The club has a committee who have various role to manage the affairs of the club.  They briefly report how these activities are going.

Practical Demonstration

You might notice that the agenda has Practical Demonstration (OP11).  The OP11 is referring to the Orbit Program.  It is the eleventh speech in the Orbit program.  At Rostrum we have a framework for learning public speaking.  It’s called Frontiers.  It currently consists of 3 levels:

  1. Launchpad
  2. Orbit
  3. Galactic

In each of these levels there are a number of speeches, that teach various skills and give confidence.

Anyway, Practical Demonstration (OP11) is a speech who’s aim is “To give a sequenced practical demonstration of how to do something physical”.  6 to 8 minutes.

Informative Presentation

This is a Launchpad speech, LP6, with the aim: “Inform the audience with a presentation which emphasises design and structure with a focus on sequencing”.  It’s a bit complicated to go into the detail here, but each of these speeches has a detailed description of how to go about the planning and delivery of the speech.

Ask a Topical Question

This is a Launchpad speech, LP4, with the aim: “Present a question with enough supporting material to enable the audience to form an opinion and to give an answer”.  The Launchpad document talks about “In meetings, conversations and when discussing issues, there are many occasions when you need to ask (or answer) a question; it’s important to be articulate and clear so as to build trust and rapport with your colleagues, business associates and professional networks”.  I goes into a lot more detail, but the idea is that a question is asked, and then club embers are randomly chosen to answer the question.

Answer a Topical Question

This is an activity of impromptu speaking, where you need to give your audience an understanding of your point of view in relation to the topical question. Basically you need to:

  1. Form an opinion
  2. Prepare and provide two supporting arguments
  3. Give an answer to the question

Impact of the Day

This is another impromptu exercise, in this case John knows that he is giving this speech, so he will be taking note of phrases and anecdotes etc, that he can use in this light speech, that caps off the meeting.

Meeting Close

The Chairperson closes the meeting and thanks visitors and members for attending.


So, this is a basic explanation of a typical meeting.  Why not come along and see what it’s all about?

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