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One commonality among association volunteer leaders is the nature of the teams they lead: distributed. Leading a distributed team presents challenges that many of us don’t have in our day-to-day jobs (although this is increasingly changing) so it’s a skill we need to help volunteers build. In a training for volunteer leaders on the topic, I offer a key ingredient for success: a commitment to communications.
July is a month of turnovers in association volunteering. This is the time we greet new volunteers to committees, chapters and boards. It’s the time we welcome new committee chairs. Whether it’s July for your association or another month, the question is always “where do we start?” when it comes to preparing our members to take on volunteer roles.
“It’s an embarrassment of riches” is how National Museum of African American History and Culture’s Director of Education Esther Washington described their volunteer pool. As the museum readies for its September 24 opening, Washington is busily preparing their 300-vounteer workforce. There are many amazing elements of this story which offer insight for associations.
On the final day of May with one signature Maryland Governor Larry Hogan rescinded 72 executive orders issued by previous administrations over the last 46 years. My response was “say what?” so I kept reading.
I just wrapped up another great session with chapter leaders – Financial Executives International this time. As I do at each of these, I come back with great ideas to try. Two that really resonated with me.
PRSA, the Public Relations Society of America, is the PR central for some 22,000 professionals around the globe. And when they set the standards and share the effective practices for many PR issues, they are speaking for the profession at large. But every issue has a local twist or a local story. And that's where the chapter comes in. At PRSA Maryland, we don't duplicate PRSA, we add to it, we highlight the local story.
<p>I recently spoke with a chapter volunteer leader who’s willing to give it a try but about ready to throw it all in. Do you want to know why? Well it seems that the bar for getting on the chapter leadership is how many years you’ve put in not performance. When she looks around the table, she sees low performance and hears all about how there’s this issue and that issue.</p>
What can you learn from a dozen very different associations evaluating and re-imagining their geographic components in the U.S. and globally? We're knee-deep in work with seven associations and have in the past four years walked alongside five others on this journey from where we are seeing four key trends or observations about chapters that are urging us to break out of the mold.
There is a paradox of growth which occurs when a chapter reaches the size where incorporation is required to create an entity which can open a bank account.
The value of attending a conference or any educational program can feel a bit intangible. Sort of like dining in a restaurant. #Ideas16 was different.
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