MBA: Workshop on Public Speaking Skills in collaboration with the Port Town Advanced Toastmasters

Mar 21, 2017 - Mar 28, 2017

A half-day workshop on Public Speaking, organised by the Department of Business Administration at SJEC, in collaboration with the Port Town Advanced Toastmasters was held on 21st and 28th March 2017 in Bishop Aloysius Paul Conference Hall. The purpose of the workshop was to hone and enhance the communication and Public Speaking skills of the students and develop innovative ideas, and enable them to speak confidently in front of live audience consisting of their own peer group.

The workshop began sharp at 9:20 am and Dr Anjali Ganesh welcomed the gathering and introduced the guests of Port Town Advanced Toastmasters in the presence of Dr Prakash Pinto, Dean of the Department of Business Administration. The resource persons were, Mr Brian Fernandes, President of Port Town Advanced Toastmasters and CEO of NewsKarnataka, Dr Malini Hebbar, Distinguished Toastmaster and Co-ordinator of Port Town Advanced Toastmasters, and Ms Bharathi Shevgur, Distinguished Toastmaster.

Dr Malini Hebbar conducted the first session. She asked seven students to come forward voluntarily. She told us that the ‘best way of learning is through participation’. The following students of 1st year MBA volunteered: Bhanu Prakash, Arwin,Vinay, Swetha, Likitha, Shareen and Supriya. Each one of the students had to choose a numbered cardboard, which held names of animals on the other side. Next, she asked for two more volunteers, a boy and a girl. Rahul and Suraksha came forward. The activity was to arrange the animals in the order of their usefulness i.e. from the most useful animal to the least useful one. Rahul and Suraksha acted as the mediators and the boys and girls instructed the right order to them separately. The learning outcomes of this activity were:

 • Try to make a good judgement

• Taking the first step i.e. going forward voluntarily as the saying goes, “Make hay while the sun shines”

 • Teamwork and co-ordination

• To be perpetual learners

This marked the end of first session.

Ms Bharathi Shevgur conducted the second session at 9:50 am. She signified the importance of various behavioural aspects of group discussion. There were three different group activities conducted. The first activity was an unguided group discussion. She divided the students into eight groups of six members each and the time and place of discussion was clearly stated. While interacting with the students Ms Bharathi Shevgur said that one has to be active and assertive while responding to a question or opinion. The topic for discussion was, “Is Cricket destroying the sports in India?” and the time allotted was 8 minutes. The purpose of this activity was to encourage participation of all, co-ordination and co-operation among the members and to build team spirit. It was more than knowing about Cricket. Later, Ms Bharathi Shevgur explained about the ‘ability to ask and answer questions’. This was taken up solely to make students excel in facing the questions asked in interviews and to make them actively indulge in the group discussions which are also an important part of the recruitment process. The activity was to form the same group as before and the group discussion called ‘Face It’. It had two phases. First phase was where each person of the group had to stand in front, facing the question asked by the group.

The second phase was Mock Press and some famous controversial profiles given were Virat Kohli, Vijay Mallya, Arvind Kejriwal, Alia Bhat, Mukesh Ambani and Rahul Gandhi. The learning outcome of this activity was to be proactive and speak confidently. She told us that while facing a discussion or an audience, one should have a proper posture. She also gave us some tips on how to refuse a question, in a professional way. This concluded Ms Bharathi Shevgur’s session.

Mr Brian Fernandes conducted the 3rd session of Public Speaking Workshop. He is the CEO of NewsKarnataka, a news publishing company in Mangaluru. This session was all about storytelling. He divided the students into six groups and gave each group two keywords. Based on the keywords one person would start the story, the other members of the group would continue it and the last person would give the conclusion. Thus, storytelling session enabled us to know the importance of listening to our team members and understand what they are trying to say. It also helped us to be more creative. This marked the end of third session. Arwin, Shareen and Likitha expressed their views and gave their feedback on the workshop. Suraksha of 1st year MBA delivered the vote of thanks and settled the program.

The next workshop was on 28th March 2017 in Bishop Aloysius Paul Conference Hall. Dr Anjali Ganesh welcomed the toastmasters. The resource persons were, Dr Malini Hebbar, Distinguished Toastmaster and Co-ordinator of Port Town Advanced Toastmasters. Ms Vidya Shenoy, Toastmaster of Port Town Advanced Toastmasters. Ms Preetham Kamath, Toastmaster of Port Town Advanced Toastmasters. Dr Malini Hebbar conducted the first session. She asked eight students to come forward voluntarily. The following students of 1st year MBA volunteered: Vinay, Likitha, Shareen, Rahul, Suraksha, Apoorva, Karthik and Priyanka. She gave each of them a piece of newspaper and told them to close their eyes. She asked the students to fold the paper in such a way that all the four corners of the paper would meet at a point. Later she told them to tear the corners of the paper. Finally, she asked them to open their eyes and look at their own newspapers. All the students did it differently. This showed that each one’s perception and understanding was different. The learning from this activity was, though the instructions, the physical environment was the same for all, their listening, and understanding capability was different.

Later, Dr Malini Hebbar gave a presentation on Murphy’s Law of Communication and Johari Window. Ms Vidya Shenoy conducted the second session. She presented about the three V’s of Communication (Visual, Voice and Verbal). She also showed videos of great speakers like Kiran Bedi and Barack Obama. Ms Preetham Kamath conducted the third session on listening skills. In order to understand the importance of listening skills, she began with a small activity where she asked the students to sit in a circle and made one student stand in the centre to start the round. According to the instruction given by the starter, students had to vacate their seats and occupy others. One who left without seat had to continue the game in order to arrange seats for themselves. The purpose of this activity was to enhance the listening skills of the students and act according to the instructions given. She briefed the students on how well one can improve their listening skills. One who is a good listener can become a good communicator too, whom the people like the most and respect.

The learning outcomes of this activity were:

• Improving attention and listening skills

• Paraphrasing

• Clarity

She concluded her session by informing students about good listening skills, communication and barriers to communication. After this session, the toastmasters divided the students into three groups. Ms Vidya Shenoy headed Group 1, Ms Preetham Kamath headed Group 2 and Dr Malini Hebbar headed Group 3. Students had to speak on different topics and the heads of their group judged them. In addition, the toastmasters had to choose two best speakers from their team. The main intention of this activity was to improve the communication skills and boost the confidence of the students. The toastmasters congratulated the students on their active participation and mentioned their good points as well as the areas requiring improvement. Before winding up the session, Dr Malini Hebbar displayed two slides containing six words each and asked the students to pronounce them. AWRY, YACHT, GIGANTIC, ZEALOUS, DEBRIS, ELITE, FAÇADE, JEOPARDY, QUAY, CHASM, ONION and NICHE were the words taught to pronounce. Then she announced the winners from each group: Apoorva and Suraksha (Group1), Likitha and Vanessa (Group2), Bhavan and Shareen (Group3).

Ms Priyanka B. Rao proposed the vote of thanks and with this, the session ended.          

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