In 1922, when 25 Army officers met in San Antonio and decided to insure each other's vehicles, they couldn't have imagined that their tiny organization would one day serve millions of members and become one of the only fully integrated financial services organizations in America.
The San Antonio campus, which opened in the mid-1970s, is USAA headquarters. They also have offices across the United States and worldwide.
The diversified companies that make up USAA are leading providers of financial planning, insurance, investments and banking for the military community.
Details around how USAA promotes Toastmasters internally:
How would you describe the strength of the USAA clubs?
The strength of our clubs, like many clubs in District 55, lie within the members who continue to keep Toastmasters as a priority in their self-development and leadership growth despite the increasing demands of work and personal life. The energy is contagious. Our members feed off each other and encourage each other to deliver speeches and volunteer to serve in meeting roles.
How does USAA promote Toastmasters within the company?
All clubs in the enterprise are provided SharePoint space on the company intranet to promote their club. We also have a presence our internal social media platform that works a lot like Twitter. We’ve also recently setup a channel called “Toastmasters TV” on the company’s video sharing platform that works a lot like YouTube. We still have an opportunity to promote the program using traditional print media, such as posters in break areas, or table tents in cafeterias.
How does USAA support your club week to week?
This is where being a corporate club really pays off. The company provides us conference rooms that seat up to 20 or more people to conduct our club meetings. Many of these rooms are equipped with projectors or HD monitors, internet access, web cams, and teleconferencing technology. Booking a room is as easy as setting up a meeting in Outlook. Some clubs have lockable storage cabinets in their rooms where they can store their supplies, ribbons, and swag. In addition to this, USAA pays our $45 membership dues every six months as an employee benefit.
Are you communicating your successes and challenges back to management or a corporate sponsor?
Sharing your Toastmasters progress with management is not a requirement of being a Toastmaster at a USAA club. At their discretion, some of our members have chosen to incorporate their Pathways progress into their official professional development conversations with management with great success. Not only does this practice keep our members accountable for their Pathways progress, but it’s a great way to increase management awareness of the program.
Since USAA Toastmasters “Club 181” was chartered back in June of 1972, USAA has chartered over a dozen clubs with hundreds of members across the country. Area G34 contains all five San Antonio clubs. USAA also has clubs in Addison/Plano, Colorado Springs, Phoenix, and Tampa.