Many of you would have heard about Mrs Fields. I think many more of you would have tasted her cookies instead! Yet, I don’t think many of you would know that she’s a classical Toastmasters success story!
Here it is:
“The idea of getting in front of a group, not as Mrs. Fields but really as Debbi, made my knees shake…” – Debbi Fields Rose as Debbi
In 1977, Debbi Fields was a young homemaker with a love of cookies and a desire to make herself into a success story. Though her business ideas were novel for their time, she managed to win bank support and baked her dreams into reality.
On August 16, 1977, Mrs. Fields Chocolate Chippery opened its doors to the public in Palo Alto, California. Twenty-plus years later, Debbi Fields’ role had expanded from managing one shop to supervising operations, brand name management, public relations and product development of her company’s 600+ company-owned and franchise stores in the United States and 10 foreign nations – a business valued at $450 million. She changed the name of her company to Mrs. Fields’ Cookies in order to expand her product line to other types of cookies.
Her motto of “Good Enough Never Is,” continues to guide the company’s policies, and as a result, Mrs. Fields’ Cookies earned a reputation for providing the best in product quality and customer service. In 1989, she streamlined operations and production schedules by introducing a state-of-the-art computer system.
Remarried and now known as Mrs. Fields Rose, she sold her business and has been writing books in recent years. Her first, 100 Recipes from the Kitchen of Debbi Fields, was the first cookbook to top The New York Times bestseller list. In order to feel comfortable in her many public speaking engagements, she joined Toastmasters and credits her training with helping her gain poise in front of an audience.
(On the Toastmasters:)
“Here’s a place where you can learn, grow, develop – and where other people are doing and feeling the same thing.”
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I think one of the key lessons we can all learn here is (no… it’s not about learning how to bake cookies and become millionaire!) the learning spirit and determination of Mrs Fields, aka Debbi Fields Rose.
Think about it, here’s a multi-millionaire, a highly successful individual by many of our standards who sees the value in personal development and public speaking! Now how often do you see that happening!
Now I know that there’re some books who preach and recommend people carry huge wads of cash in their wallet as a way to boost one’s self esteem and confidence. But how sustainable (and safe) is that?! Personally, I find the the concept of having our personal confidence linked by the amount of cash we have in our wallets intriguing, if not dangerous. One moment I may have $5000 in my wallet and feeling like Bruce Lee / Mike Tyson, the next moment I might just be feeling like Milhouse (from the Simpsons) when I get mugged or robbed!
Now how’s that for speaking confidence! And think about the how inconvenient (not to mention… “IMPRESSIVE”) it would be for you to carry a big bulge around in your pocket whilst you’re up on stage speaking!
Ladies and Gentlemen, there’s no substitute for competency. I believe that, one of the best ways to achieving what we want in life is through training. Training, training and training!
Confidence is a result of competency and preparedness. And the both of them may be derived with lots and lots of training and practice.
Do not let fear and lack of ability stop you from going on stage. Instead, I believe it’s exactly because we’re afraid that we should step up to speak.
We cannot defeat fear by running away from it!
Face up to fear. You need not eradicate it to begin speaking… because at the end of the day, fear is here to protect us… not paralyze us.
It’s time to start speaking TODAY!
A Platform for Falling, Practicing and Growing