Roles and Responsibilities for Zoom Meetings

Meeting Roles and Responsibilities

  1. Being a Good Club Member
  2. Sergeant at Arms
  3. Warmup
  4. Timekeeper
  5. Zoommaster
  6. Grammarian
  7. Speakers
  8. Evaluators
  9. Topics Master
  10. Topics Evaluator
  11. General Evaluator
  12. Toastmaster

Being a Good Club Member

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  • Join every Zoom meeting you can.
  • Be ready to take a last minute role if someone can’t make it.
  • Respond to emails as soon as you can.
  • If you have said you will do something it is important to the club to do it.
  • When you are in the audience, concentrate on the speaker – the greatest gift we can give is our attention – and feedback oon the Zoom chat with encouraging comments and recommendations. You can give them to anyone with a role, not just the speakers!
  • Please ensure you identify yourself fully on your zoom profile – not everyone knows who you are
  • You can use the speeches to practice your evaluations? Write down what you would say and compare it with what the evaluator says.
  • When you have a role, please keep to the timings (keep an eye on the lights) – if you go over time, you are taking time from others.

Sergeant at Arms

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The SAA’s role is to setup the meeting correctly.

  • Call the meeting to order at the appointed start time (usually 1930)
  • In your opening introduction you need to cover
    • Use of Zoom platform
    • Phones, tablets etc
    • Having fun
  • Finally pass the meeting on to the President to perform the welcomes


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  • Let the Toastmaster know that you will be available.
  • Find out if there is a theme to the evening.
  • Prepare a short one-minute introduction.
  • Choose a topic that everyone will be able to speak about.
  • Arrive early for the meeting.
  • Explain to visitors that they may pass.
  • Explain your topic and give an example.
  • When calling people to speak make sure you identify them correctly – there may be more than one Mark or Jill
  • At the end, thank everyone and pass back to the Toastmaster.


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  • Let the Toastmaster know that you will be available
  • Don’t forget a pen and note-pad or a an electronic nate taker such as Word, OneNote or  Evernote
  • Join the meeting early and ensure that the you have a timer, a visual indicator and hopefully an audio indicator
  • If you use backgrounds on Zoom, test them before the meeting starts showing the Toastmaster what you intend doing
  • You will be asked to briefly explain your role
  • Everyone in Toastmasters has a time limit that is listed on the agenda. You show the green indicator when they hit the minimum time, the amber indicator half way and the red indicator when they hit the maximum time. The red indicator should stay on display until they finish
  • It is helpful to make an ausio indcation too. This can be as simple as unmuting and saying “Green light” at the required time. This will have the effect on Zoom of bringing your screen to focus for everyone temporarily
  • In the warm up, if they speak for over 10 /15 seconds, use an audio signal
  • For voting, the minimum time is 30 seconds less than minimum time and the maximum time is 30 seconds more than the maximum time, so for a 5-7 minute speech, they can be voted on so long as they speak between 4.30 and 7.30
  • When asked to provide a timekeeper’s report just state the exact times of each performance in minutes and seconds. It is the Toastmaster’s decision on whether he/she is eligible for voting
  • Topics – ensure you give the name and description of each topic as well as the time

Also see the TMI Guidance on the role.


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  • Let the Toastmaster know that you will be available
  • Arrive early and familiarise yourself with the meeting controls
  • Recordings: You should record all speeches and any other roles that you feel comfortable doing or any roles where the role performer asks you to record them
  • Do a trial recording before the meeting. Any queries, ask the Toastmaster
  • Ensure you know how to setup the Polls for Best Speaker, Evaluator and Topics Speaker
  • Show the relevant Poll when asked by the Toastmaster
  • Once tthe polling is complete, advise the President privately on Chat of the winner
  • You will be asked to briefly explain your role


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  • Let the Toastmaster know that you will be available.
  • You may select a “Word of the Day”. A word that can be incorporated easily into everyday conversation but may be different from the way people usually express themselves works well.
  • An adjective/adverb is more adaptable than a noun or verb.
  • Try to make a Zoom background with your Word of the Day
  • Include the phonetic spelling of the word.
  • Prepare a sentence showing how the word is used.
  • You will be asked to briefly explain your role and “Word of the Day”.
  • Don’t forget a pen and note-pad or a an electronic nate taker such as Word, OneNote or  Evernote

During the meeting

  • When introduced announce the “Word of the Day”, state its part of speech, define it, use it in a sentence and ask everyone to use it when possible.
  • Throughout the meeting, listen to everyone’s word usage. Write down any awkward or misuse of language (incomplete sentences, sentences that change direction in midstream, incorrect grammar, malapropisms, etc) with a note of who erred. Note who used the “Word of the Day” (or a derivative of it).
  • Look out for “filler” words such as “ah”, “um”, “er”. If you like, make notes of how often they are used, when and by whom.
  • When called on by the Toastmaster to give your report, try to offer correct usage in every instance where there was misuse. Report on creative language usage, use of “filler” words and announce who used the “Word of the Day” if there is one.

Also see the TMI Guidance on the role.


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  • Let the TM know that you will be available to speak and as soon as you can let her/him know the title and Pathways assignment.
  • Liaise with the TM and Zoommaster if you need to share slides BEFORE the meeting
  • Email your evaluator to let them know of any particular aspects you would like them to focus on and send them a copy of the Pathways evaluation form.
  • Read your Pathways assignment and learning material and prepare your speech in accordance with it
  • Turn up early on the night ready to WOW your audience

Also see the TMI Guidance on the role.


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  • The speaker should contact you but if not, follow them up
  • Find out the speech title and what they would like you to focus on
  • Ask the speaker for a copy of the Pathways Evaluation form
  • Arrive early to the meeting.
  • Use one of the evaluation methods explained in the Toastmasters Evaluation Handbook or discovered from the web – sandwich is the most common using the format of Commend, Recommend and Commend.
  • Focus on the good things about the speech and one or maybe two things which if done would make the most positive difference to the speaker’s performance.
  • Give specific advice – This could be done better and this is how.
  • Remember, you have 3 minutes to give your evaluation.
  • It is good practice to start by thanking the speaker.
  • Ensure you speak to the whole club not to the speaker.
  • Email your speaker afterwards to explain your feedback in more detail.
  • Complete the evaluation form and return it to the speaker

Also see the TMI Guidance on the role.

Topics Master

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  • Aside from putting together a list of topics for the speakers to deliver, the most difficult part of the Topics master role is to select appropriate participants.
  • the priority order for selection should be as follows:
    1. Those paid-up members that are in attendance but have not had an appointed role
      1. Of those, the VPE may be able to advise which ones have not had a chance to speak to a topic for some time.
    2. Potential new members (guests) who are happy to try and do a topic. Ask guests at the break if they would be happy to speak.
    3. Other TM guests
  • When introducing the topic, explain what the person has to do before you tell us whom you are choosing to perform – then everyone pays more attention!
  • Remember to lead the applause when the speaker finishes.
  • At the end, thank everyone and pass back to the Toastmaster.

Also see the TMI Guidance on the role.

Topics Evaluator

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  • Don’t forget a pen and note-pad or a an electronic nate taker such as Word, OneNote or  Evernote
  • If 2 Topics Evaluators are on the agenda, they need to agree between them how they will divide up the task. Suggest the following
    • First evaluator evaluates the Topicsmaster and the subject
    • Second evaluator evaluates the 1st Topic Speaker
    • First evaluator evaluates 2nd Speaker
    • and then in turn
  • As the topics speakers are called make a brief note of the topic and the speaker
  • Tip: Choose one thing to focus on such as eye contact, body language, use of words or speech structure.
  • Be specific and illustrate/demonstrate your findings. Illustrate/demonstrate what you could do to improve.
  • To keep within your time limit, you will need to make this snappy and focus on giving each performer only one commendation and one recommendation.
  • If you find, while you are writing your notes, that you cannot spot enough things or if the speaker is particularly brilliant, you can evaluate them by explaining why they were so brilliant, something like “Bob did a brilliant topic because he did xxx, this is something we can all learn from”.

General Evaluator

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  • Let the Toastmaster know that you will be available.
  • Check any special arrangements/events taking place at the meeting.
  • Contact the evaluators and check that they have discussed the speech objectives and requirements with the speaker. Check if they would like any specific feedback on their evaluations.
  • Arrive early and don’t forget a pen and note-pad or a an electronic nate taker such as Word, OneNote or Evernote
  • Spend the evening focusing on what has not been evaluated, e.g.:
    • Evaluators,
    • Toastmaster,
    • Meeting time-keeping,
    • Warm up,
    • Timekeeper,
    • Anything you’d like to see done differently,
    • Any other suggestions you would like the club to hear.


this is only your opinion and it is not necessary to mention everyone individually. You should try to draw attention to the things that were done well, maybe one or two things that can be changed, and encouragement to continue doing the good things.

Also see the TMI Guidance on the role.


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Please Note:

We will try to arrange a mutually convenient date for you to undertake the role well in advance. Please confirm with the VPE that you are willing to undertake the role (a great deal of the work is done in advance of the meeting) – if, for whatever reason, you cannot, or do not wish to take on the responsibility for the organisation of the evening let the VPE know as soon as possible. Equally, if you think that it is likely to be a problem with the date, arrange with the VPE to change it to a more convenient one. Should your circumstances change (life happens!) try and find someone who is scheduled to do the role in the future to swap with you. (Keep the VPE advised.) Your mentor may also be of assistance. If you have any questions please contact the President or VPE.

Prior to the Meeting

  • Immediately after the previous meeting the VPE should send the agenda to everyone with a role and ask them to confirm their role back to you.
  • Ensure that all role players for the meeting confirm their intention to attend, if they don’t answer the email, phone or WhatsApp them.
  • You also need to find out speech titles, confirm their speech number (and manual if they are advanced speakers) and whether they want to share their screen. Remind them to share the evaluation forms with tehir speech evaluator
  • Any cancellations need to be replaced, usually by sending out an email asking for volunteers. Smaller roles can usually be filled on the night, but it is better to have them arranged in advance. If you need to replace speakers, ask the VPE if they have a speech waiting list, as there may be members waiting for a a speech slot to complete a manual or to perform their Icebreaker.
  • Send out the agenda a couple of days before the meeting to ALL members with a short message encouraging them to attend.
  • Put together a list for yourself of everything you will need to announce that isn’t on the agenda (e.g., changes to the speeches, evaluators etc).
  • If you need advice, contact the VPE, your mentor, or the President (or any other member that you think may be able to help!).
  • There is lots of Pathways stuff available here

At the meeting

  • Join at about 19:00hrs, and liaise with the VPE and President about any late changes or additional information to be presented.
  • Ensure speakers and Zoommaster have slide sharing all ready and working
  • Check that everyone with a role is present ready to conjure up replacements.
  • Check that the Zoommaster and timekeeper are happy with their roles
  • After being introduced by the President, make a brief opening address to include:
    • Any changes to the agenda.
    • Introducing the timekeeper, videographer, grammarian and warm-up. Give them time to explain their role.

In general

  • Lead the applause to help keep the meeting dynamic.
  • Keep to the times on the agenda.
  • Be decisive! It may feel “bossy” to you but will appear as being properly in control, to the audience.
  • The meeting participants look to you to set the tone of the proceedings so project good humour and enthusiasm.
  • It can be helpful to tick off each agenda line item as it happens so you don’t miss any. It is particularly easy to forget to allow one minute after each speech for comments and the timer’s report prior to the vote.

Introducing speakers

  • Have a small thing to say about them such as “Xxx has been a toastmaster for two years. They really like squirrels, etc.”.
  • Explain the Pathways assignment and the goals for that assignment
  • Introduce the speaker – the usual format is “and now we have Jane Bloggs with her speech entitled ‘Why I love squirrels’, with ‘Why I love squirrels’, Jane Bloggs”.
  • Lead the applause as the speaker unmutes themselves and takes control of the meeting


  • Explain that everyone in the room is entitled to vote, including guests, (if there are at least three candidates).
  • At the toastmaster’s discretion, you should disqualify from the voting, any speeches under 30 seconds below the minimum time or more than 30 seconds over the maximum time. Only allow speeches overtime in exceptional circumstances (e.g. if a very new member). If it means there is no vote, so be it.
  • Check the Zoommaster is ready to show the polls and advise the President of the result

Comments and feedback

  • Make it clear to everyone how to use chat and give feedback to the role performers

Your final job is to return control to the President.

Also see the TMI Guidance on the role.