Officer Tools

Video Clips



Course Intro


  Module Four: Student Leadership  
  Officer Tools    

Bringing Greetings/Thought for the Day

  Being asked to bring greetings as a state officer or presenting a "Thought for the Day" is like being asked to give a short speech. This type of presentation is necessary and important, therefore requires the same care and consideration you would give to any speech.

Your remarks should be limited to two-three minutes unless you are told otherwise. Try to find a quotation or story you can build your remarks around. Also be sure to: 

  1. Express your appreciation for being invited.
  2. Let the audience know you appreciate the good work they are doing, and your recognition of some of their achievements. If you have something in common with the audience, let them know that from the beginning.
  3. When bringing greetings, challenge your audience to achieve the goals of their meeting/organization.
  4. Be enthusiastic and sincere.
  5. Be sure your "thought" is free of bias (example: gender bias).
  6. Get right to the point of what you wish to say and avoid small talk.
  7. Conclude effectively. Use a quote, story, or recommend a course of action.

The most valuable of all talents is never using two words when one will do.

        - Thomas Jefferson


Introducing a Speaker

  An introduction is a very short speech, usually no longer than one minute in length. Officers should prepare an introduction as carefully as they would any other speech.

In advance, obtain the following information about the speaker you are going to introduce:

  • Name, title or profession, place of employment (if important), and other significant facts
  • Exact title of the speech
  • Why the speaker is qualified to speak on the topic
  • The significance of the topic for the audience
  Your goal in the introduction is to make the speaker feel welcome and important; and make your audience want to listen to what the speaker has to say. It is best to make the introduction short, complimentary and informative.
  1. Be enthusiastic and sincere.
  2. Be absolutely sure you are pronouncing the speaker's name correctly. It is acceptable to ask your speaker to help you with the proper pronunciation.
  3. Some speakers have a prepared introduction they wish to haveread, and will usually let you know if that is the case. If so, read the introduction exactly as written.
  4. Create suspense in your introduction so that your audience is waiting for the speaker.
  5. Begin the applause after your introduction and wait at the podium until your speaker has taken his or her place. Then be seated as appropriate, generally in the audience.
  6. Be alert to return to the podium after the speaker has finished, during the applause.
  7. Be prepared to sincerely thank your speaker, comment briefly on the speech, and if appropriate, present a gift/plaque.

Sample Introductions


Introduction of a HOSA Officer

  The HOSA, HOSA, is one of many career and technical student organizations across the United States. HOSA helps to develop leadership skills and a sense of responsibility in students enrolled at the secondary, postsecondary and collegiate levels.

As members of HOSA, we are very honored to have one of our elected state officers here with us today to talk about "Becoming a State Officer". From _________________________________ school in ______________________, please welcome HOSA State ____________________________, _______________________.


Introduction of a Keynote Speaker

  Our speaker this evening is a man who is a leader in the true sense of the word. While in college, he served as the president of Phi Beta Kappa, and graduated from Texas State University with honors.

After 9 years as a classroom teacher, he attended UCLA and completed his master's degree in Educational Administration. After serving as a middle school principal for 12 years, he attended Princeton University, this time to finish his doctorate in Occupational Development.

Considered one of the top educational leaders in the state, our speaker continues to serve the needs of junior high students through his position as the state advisor of the Career Exploration Clubs of America. Here to talk about "Becoming the Leaders of Tomorrow", it is my pleasure to introduce to you - Dr. David Edwards.

It is never too late to be what you might have been.
                  - George Eliot

Telephone Communication

  HOSA leaders frequently communicate by using the telephone. The first 15 seconds of any telephone call are crucial. One key to success is knowing how to make your voice work for you. Here are some suggestions:
  • Warm up your voice before placing your phone calls. Talk to yourself if necessary, or make calls later in the day.
  • Record your voice and play it back. Be your own voice coach by using a simple cassette recorder. Since most people don't like the sound of their own voice, practice enough with the recorder to get used to the sound.
  • Use your natural pitch. Changing your voice to create another image is not only artificial but can be harmful to your voice over time.
  • Sit up straight when you talk on the phone. It creates a more alert tone in your voice.
  • Be sure you have the correct number when you place a call, and that you know the name of the person and location you are calling.
  • Identify yourself and the reason for your call. If your call is going to last more than a minute, ask the person if they have time to talk. For example, "I'm calling to discuss your presentation at our state conference. Do you have a few minutes to talk?"
  • Notice how the listener reacts to your voice. Do people often mistake who you are or ask you to repeat yourself? Do they hesitate when you expect them to speak? Chances are they may not be hearing you very well.
  • Listen actively. Let the person on the other end know you're listening. Use response signs such as "Yes," "I understand," or "Certainly."
  • Smile. People will "hear" your smile over the telephone. One symptom of not smiling is when people who know you ask if you're feeling all right. They can hear stress and fatigue in your voice.

Sitting, Standing and Posture

  HOSA officers are frequently required to sit, stand, or move about in front of large groups of people. When people in the audience are looking at YOU, you'll want to look your best. Proper poise and posture is as important as the HOSA uniform when looking like a leader. In order to make stage movements as graceful and natural as possible, the HOSA officer must PRACTICE these professional stage behaviors.
  Women A female officer stands up straight and tall with the left foot facing front and at a slight angle, and the right heel placed in the instep of the left foot and at a 90 degree angle to the left foot.

The right leg may be slightly bent to prevent a stiff looking pose. (This leg/foot position helps to slim the hips.)

  Men A male officer stands up straight with feet spaced comfortably apart (no more than shoulder-width) and facing forward.
  All officers Eyes forward, chin up. (Don't look at your feet!) Hands comfortably relaxed at the sides with shoulders back. Elbows may be slightly bent and should be close to the body, but not stiff. (Males may clasp their hands together in front if they prefer.)
  HOW TO SIT... 
  1. Approach the chair, turn, and locate the edge of the chair with the back of your leg/calf.
  2. Men may pull up pant legs slightly before sitting. Females should not arrange their skirts by smoothing the back of the skirt before sitting.
  3. Looking straight ahead with the back straight and keeping your hands at your sides, sit on the front half of the chair with body weight forward.
  4. Slide to the back of the chair. Females upper backs should not touch the backs of their chairs.
  5. Females should sit with feet crossed at the ankles. (If legs are long or the chair is short, feet are under the chair and still crossed at the ankles.) Men should sit with feet flat on the floor. Both should keep their hands comfortably relaxed on either side of their laps.
  1. Shift torso weight forward and, using leg muscles and keeping your back straight, stand straight up - gracefully. Don't use your hands to push up off the chair.
  2. Walk away gracefully.

REMEMBER...when sitting on stage, try to sit as still as possible. Don't wiggle around or play with any parts of your clothing. ALWAYS keep your eyes focused on the stage action, such as a speaker. Keep a positive expression on your face, and remember that someone in the audience is watching YOU!

  1. Establish eye contact with the person at the podium as you approach, and courteously take command of the podium. Watch the other person leave and then direct your eyesight to the audience before you start to speak.
  2. Stand up straight, feet slightly apart and flat on the floor, hands gently holding on to the top sides of the podium.
  3. DO NOT swing, sway, bounce up and down, or wiggle. DO NOT hold the podium in a death grip. Relax!
  4. To exit the podium, open the podium to the next speaker and wait until that person takes over the podium before you leave.
Life is made up of small pleasures. Happiness is made up of those tiny successes. The big ones come too infrequently. And if you do not collect all those tiny successes, the big ones do not really mean anything.
           - Norman Lear

Shaking Hands

  HOSA officers meet and greet all kinds of people. A good firm handshake is a professional greeting that begins your contact with another person.

A good hand shake is firm, brief, and at elbow length. It should convey a positive attitude. Be sure to establish eye contact - and smile.

  1. Bring your right hand from the side of your body to the waistline.
  2. Place your palm firmly in the other person's hand for one or two shakes.
  3. Your left hand should remain at your side.
  4. Say "Hello" or "How do you do."
  5. Maintain eye contact and a sincere smile.


Rules for introductions and hand shakes:

  1. A younger person is presented to an older person.
  2. A male is presented to a female.
  3. Regardless of age or gender, always present to a person in a high position.

Generally, a female offers her hand first in a hand shake, although that is not a rigid rule. When you are in HOSA uniform and are being introduced to anyone, offer your hand in a hand shake.


Presenting Awards

  HOSA officers are often in a position to present awards, or recognize others for their achievements in or contributions to HOSA.

When asked to present an award, the HOSA officer should be sure to find out WHERE, WHEN, and the PURPOSE of the award.

Prior to the actual award presentation, the HOSA officer should determine the location of the award to be presented. (Is it on a table? Under the podium? Is it in a box? etc.) Preparing ahead of time could prevent an uncomfortable experience at the podium.

At the podium during the award presentation, the HOSA officer should be prepared to:

  1. Explain the purpose and importance of the award. Show sincere enthusiasm and appreciation for the award recipient's achievements.
  2. Introduce the recipient while discussing that person's accomplishments.
  3. Present the award with your left hand while shaking the recipient's hand with your right hand.
  4. Position yourself and the recipient so that the recipient is holding his/her award so that it can be seen while facing the audience. Expect a picture to be taken at this point - and smile!
  5. Lead the applause.

For your award recipient, this could be an important moment in recognition of their outstanding efforts to support the HOSA. Take the time and care necessary to honor that person's achievements when preparing to present an award.


Writing Skills

  The spoken word is appreciated; however, when a person takes the time to write "the words," impact is forever. The spoken word can be forgotten but the written word may likely be kept in a file or scrapbook forever.

Your investment of time in saying "thanks" will build others because they know you have their best interest in mind.

  Helpful Hints
  1. Write regularly.
  2. Avoid the use of "I" - Never use it at the beginning of the paragraph and limit it in the rest of the body.
  1. Use inclusive pronouns -- the use of "we,""our,""you,""yours," and "us" include the reader in the letter. The more involved the reader becomes, the more effective the letter is.
  2. Make your messages personal -- no one really enjoys a form letter or note. Refer to something that applies to the reader if possible.
  3. Use correct grammar and spelling. A dictionary, thesaurus, and English grammar books are necessary for the effective leader. Use them!
  4. Use a professional grade of stationary for letters. White stationary with black is OK. HOSA stationary is preferred. HOSA note cards can also be used.
  5. Practice good handwriting. Make your handwriting neat, clear, and easy to read. Use a black or blue ink pen.
  6. Be timely. Respond within a few days after the project, visit or accomplishment. Follow-up is important.

  ** Use HOSA Letterhead



Mr. First Last
321 Something Street
Town, TX 72777-8889

Dear Mr. Last:

Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to visit with the members of the Town Lion's Club to talk about the HOSA last week. It was a pleasure to share with you HOSA's efforts in community service and in supporting the health care community.

Your generous contribution of $1000 to sponsor the Researched Persuasive Speaking event at our State Leadership Conference in Austin is very much appreciated. I will be forwarding the names of those Lion's Club members who have agreed to serve as judges for this event to John Doe, our HOSA State Advisor. He will follow-up with additional information in the near future.

On behalf of the over 8000 members across Texas, thank you for your support and participation with our organization.


Your Name
(State) HOSA Officer

c: HOSA State Advisor