Ask District Finance: December 2020

By Linda Patten, District Finance Officer

Happy Holidays to you and yours.  May the days be merry and bright even during these challenging times.  I find it most interesting that when I do a TLI or a DECM,  I get a series of questions about gift cards, how to sign up for Concur and such.  If those are topics of interest, then go into the archives as I have written about them before (and probably will do so again).

What I would like to do here is to promote three videos that Michelle Peticolas, Chris Scrivani and I created–videos designed for Club Treasurers and other officers if they are curious about the financial workings of the Club.  Take a look at them. If they raise questions, please let me know at

We are six months into the 2020-2021 Toastmasters year.  What I want to ask you all is: “Do you have a strategy for your Club?”  This is not only a budget for where you want to spend your money and what you want to buy with it, but rather a financial strategy of what incentives the Club will work towards and how much money the Club would like in their savings account to pay for the items the Club wishes to purchase.

I have talked in the past about the items that might be on your wish list such as cameras, microphones, projectors, Facebook Ads, other paid advertising of events, certificates from Toastmasters International and such.  The strategy that I want you to consider is what incentives you want to shoot for to fund this wish list. 

  • Is your Club going for the maximum number of Open Houses to build the Club members? Don’t forget the open house incentive.
  • Do you want to ensure that all the Club Officers are trained and ensure that all 7 and maybe even the shadow officers attend TLI?  Then the 7 of 7 is the incentive for you.
  • Do you want to get the maximum number of renewals for the 6-month term starting April 1 and as early as possible so that you are not chasing your members as the deadline looms? Then the incentive for that is to be one of the first 20 clubs to have 8 renewals. 
  • Have you created a dynamite video or have members who have done a “My Why” video that you have not promoted?  Then send them forward as there is an incentive for all of these.

January starts a new calendar year. This is a great time for strategic planning.  Without a plan, the year will run and you will wonder “What happened? Why didn’t we get any of those incentives the District offered?”  Don’t be left without showing off the excellence of YOUR club.  I look forward to seeing your submissions.

Linda Patten
District Finance Officer