by Dave Gilman
Colored signals are commonly used in Toastmasters clubs to show speakers when they have reached minimum time, an in between time, and when they have reached maximum time. In addition, the signals help keep the meeting running on time.
Just like traffic lights, green, yellow, and red indicators are shown to indicate a particular signal. While some clubs have electronic lights similar to a traffic light, most clubs use colored hand held devices made from paper.
A green indicator will be shown to the speaker when a speaker has reached the minimum time, a yellow indicator will be shown when the speaker is in between the minimum time and the maximum time, and a red indicator will be shown when the speaker has reached the maximum time. In some instances the red can also suggest that the speaker has 30 seconds to conclude.
To give you an example, if you are delivering a typical prepared speech which is 5 to 7 minutes, a green indicator will be shown at 5 minutes, a yellow indicator will be shown at 6 minutes, and a red indicator will be shown at 7 minutes.
If a speaker needs additional or less time in the case of a non-standard speech, speak with the Timer, explain your timing requirements and have it adjusted accordingly.
Now that you know the meaning behind the colored signals, plan and practice accordingly.