This was my after-dinner speech made at the European Speechwriter Network conference banquet at Westminster College, Cambridge on 16 April 2015
I’m afraid to say that my worst speechwriting experience happens on a regular basis.
I’m a member of Toastmasters International – I don’t know if you’re familiar with the organisation. It’s a programme where people can practise making speeches in front of a sympathetic audience – it started in America and now there are branches all over Europe.
We meet twice a month. It’s an organisation that promotes competition – every meeting they hand out awards for best speaker – and although I’m supposed to be the professional speechwriter – they’re all amateurs – every time I make a speech I always lose.
A few weeks ago I entered the international speech competition – winners go through to the final in America.
I wanted to win. My speech title was What I learnt in the Great Recession.