When Diane and I first started working at IBM Boca Raton, Thursdays were special days. The cafeteria offered a “gourmet” meal and really good chocolate chip cookies every Thursday, and that was also the day when promotions and pay increases happened (not as often as the cookies, unfortunately). Even after IBM started telling us about raises on other days of the week, Diane and I would let the other know of a raise or promotion by saying “It’s Thursday”.
Today, I can say “It’s Thursday” as a Toastmaster. I’d finished all but one requirement for my second Distinguished Toastmaster award more than a year ago – the only thing left to do was coach, found, or mentor a club before June 30, 2020, when the old educational program ended. I didn’t think it would happen – I was traveling too much to commit to attending most meetings of a new club. But last October, I was asked if I could mentor a new club at Citrix in Santa Clara – the timing of the meetings worked for me and the club was willing to accept my schedule, so I was appointed (in theory, the club had been operational too long to have a formal mentor, but an exception was made).
I attended as many meetings as I could; then COVID-19 came, and my travel schedule disappeared, so I’ve been to every meeting since mid-February. I’ve even attended some officer meetings, which wouldn’t have happened if I would have had to drive up to Santa Clara. And yesterday, the club submitted the paperwork to formally grant me credit for my mentorship. Today, the Vice President Education of Silicon Valley Storytellers submitted the application to make me a DTM again, and the system worked – I was notified of the award this evening.
I’m still working with the club at Citrix and expect to continue for a while longer. I would think about joining officially, but the club is limited to Citrix employees – and I definitely don’t want to go work at Citrix (or anywhere else).
Now, if I could find some good chocolate chip cookies….