As Timer of the meeting, you help the meeting participants to be aware of the timing of their functions. You help keep the meeting on schedule.


Before the meeting…

  • Check with VP Education, the individual speakers, or the Toastmaster of the meeting for any special timing requirements.
  • Make sure you have a functioning stopwatch, the list of timing procedures, and the green, yellow and red cards.

During the meeting…

  • When asked to explain the timing procedures, stand up, address the Toastmaster and announce the applicable timing rules.
  • Time each participant according to the timing rules even if you have not been specifically asked to do so.
  • Once a speaker hits the limit of their allotted time, there is always a “grace period” of 15-30sec, depending on the role.  However, at the end of the grace period, if the speaker is still speaking, the Timer is expected to begin clapping.
  • Keep track of the times of Table Topics Speakers, Prepared Speakers and Evaluators. When asked by the Toastmaster if any Speakers are disqualified, rise and state their names only (no other comments are needed).

Read the timing rules loudly and clearly so there are no misunderstandings. (Use your own words so that your delivery comes across in a more natural manner.)

Try to use your judgment about when to applaud someone who speaks beyond the grace period.  For example, an exception may be made for a Non-Toastmaster guest who may not know the rule and may be in the process of wrapping up their speech.

Begin the timing as soon as the Speaker first starts speaking or makes any non-verbal communication whatsoever. Do not wait until the Speaker has addressed the Toastmaster and audience.