1 Week Before The Meeting

  • Check the theme for the meeting on the meeting roster page.
  • Prepare 8 table topics around the theme.  Depending on timing and length of speeches that day – all 8 may not be used. Usually we have 5-7 table topics.

Just Before The Meeting

  • Bring your table topics to the meeting and hand them to selected participants (it is recommended that you select participants who are not speaking or taking a significant role in the meeting).
  • You may wish to use the following schedule to make your job easier.  Chart for speakers / Topics

During the Meeting

  • After being introduced by the Chairperson, you are in control
  • Go to the lecturn, and use this script as a guideline. 
  • Remember, put your style and personality into the script


The Table Topics portion of the meeting is usually 10 minutes in length.


Thank you Mr./Madam Chairperson for this kind introduction.

Now we come to the impromptu speaking portion of the evening, Table Topics.

For the benefit of our guests [if guests are present], the objective of Table Topics is to acquire the ability to speak well when called upon and do so with only little prior preparation.

Speaking “off the cuff” is something we are often asked to do at work or in social situations. Learning to “think on your feet” is important during interviews, discussions, debates and seminars.

The benefits of impromptu speaking are many and 3 of the most important are:

  • You learn to remain cool under pressure,
  • You gain self-confidence, and
  • You learn to develop readiness of the wits.

The format we will use is to have the next sequential speaker open their envelope as the current individual speaks.

May I ask the first speaker to open his/her envelope now?

[Give information or instructions on your chosen subject related to the theme while the first speaker is getting ready.] 

The timing for each speech is 1 minute. Mr./Madame Timekeeper: Green at 0:30, Amber at 0:45, Red at 1:00. [Explain the reasons for timing speakers and the fact that speakers who do not speak within the assigned time will not be eligible to the vote for “Best Table Topic”.]

May I ask Speaker #1 to begin and Speaker # 2 please open your envelope.
[Thank the speaker and lead the applause]

[Repeat this process for each speaker.]
You have just heard ……speakers expressing their feelings about a variety of subjects: Mr./Madame Timekeeper could I have the time duration of all speakers please?
[At your discretion, exclude from the vote any speakers with timing infractions]

Please use the ballot in front of you to vote for the Best Table Topics speaker. Wrap-up
That concludes my function as your Table Topics Master and thank you for your active participation.

I will now return the control to our Chairperson of the evening