All of us wanted to improve some area of our life through Toastmasters. Clubs also strive to improve every year. Toastmasters provides a road map called the Distinguished Club Program (the DCP). Following it makes DCP as easy to understand as 1, 2, 3!
Begin with DCP
As a nearly 100-year old organization Toastmasters International has experience in studying successful clubs. Subsequently, TI created a set of goals that every successful club has in common. Club executives need to understand the DCP as they are responsible for meeting those goals. However, every member plays a part.
YOU are the reason the club exists.
YOU are not only the key to your own success but also the key to your club’s success. Hence, it important every member understand the DCP.
An Annual Program
What do strong clubs do well? What should ALL clubs try to do? Clubs take care of every single member by achieving administration goals, training goals, membership goals and education goals. The Distinguished Club Program runs from July 1 through June 30. After June 30 clubs that have achieved their membership goals AND have at least 5 DCP points are designated a Distinguished club, Select Distinguished club or a President’s Distinguished club. It is an honour to be a distinguished club. Clubs proudly display a DCP ribbon on their banner for every year they become a distinguished club.
Membership and DCP
To be distinguished a club must meet their annual club membership goal. Every club officer can go onto Toastmasters.org, leadership central, club central, Distinguished Performance Reports and open their DCP report that will show the club goals for the year. At the top is a box for membership with the base number, the required number and the to date member numbers.
The base number is the number of members at the beginning of the year, the required is how many members are needed by June 30 (small clubs base + 5 members, big clubs minimum 20) and the to date number is the number of members the club currently has. Every club must meet the required number of members by June 30 to become a distinguished club. You have until June 30 to meet or exceed the required number. Toastmasters sets realistic, achievable goals for every club every year but ALL clubs should try to be a minimum of 20 members or charter strength. And the most vibrant, healthy clubs usually have 30 members or more!
Finally, every club must get 5 DCP points or more to be Distinguished, 7 or more points to be Select Distinguished and 9 points or more to be President’s Distinguished. Successful clubs will tell you that it’s FUN to have everyone excited about playing their part in becoming a President’s Distinguished Club.
President’s Distinguished clubs have
- new and experienced members,
- variety at their meetings, and
- several members who have achieved different levels on the Pathways education program.