Prepare your questions before the meeting, if possible using the theme of that meeting. Seat in the first row. When the Toastmaster calls you, take over that part of the meeting.
* Briefly state the purpose of Table Topics and mention any theme.
* Be certain everyone understands the maximum time they have for their response.
* Give each speaker a different topic or question, call on speakers at random.
* State the question briefly – then call on a respondent.
* Don’t ask two people the same thing unless you specify that each must give opposing viewpoints.
* You may wish to invite visitors and guests to participate after they have seen one or two members’ responses. But let them know they are free to decline.
During each short speech, sit down, give the floor, then lead the applause and begin the next one.
Watch your total time. You may need to adjust the number of questions so your segment ends on time. Even if your portion started late, try to end on time to avoid the total meeting running overtime.
If your club presents a best Table Topics speaker award:
* Ask the timer at the end of the Table Topics session to report those eligible for the award. Though the times vary among clubs, generally a participant is disqualified for stopping 15 seconds prior to the minimum time or speaking 15 seconds beyond the maximum.
* Ask members to vote for best Table Topics speaker and pass their votes to the sergeant at arms or vote counter.
If your club has a Table Topics evaluator, ask for his or her report and then return control of the meeting to the Toastmaster.