The STC-SM member showcase and volunteer appreciation dinner meeting held on June 25 at Little Daddy’s in Livonia was a great opportunity to recognize and reflect on the contributions of our members both in the workplace and in our chapter. And it also gave me the opportunity to reflect on the past program year as my year of serving as your chapter president draws to a close. In reflecting, we can both celebrate what we have achieved and think about where we want to go as a chapter.
As a manager, I was taught not only to set goals and the plans to achieve them but also to define the metrics for measuring performance against those goals. With that in mind, I spoke at our dinner meeting about the five goals for our chapter that I had outlined at our September 2013, council meeting and our success to date in achieving them. These five goals, and our achievements to date, are:
- Complete and submit a financially sound 2014 budget on time. We did produce a budget that was realistic and meaningful and, although we didn’t quite get it done by the self-imposed deadline of October 31, it was submitted prior to STC’s deadline of November 18. So, overall, I was happy with this result.
- Increase our membership by 15 percent (from 57 to 65 members). Despite our best efforts, we did not increase our membership by any amount this year, although the program and networking events that we held helped hold us steady financially. I even saw a few new faces in the crowd at some events. Given similar stories we’ve heard from other chapters regarding member retention and recruiting, I’m pleased with our membership efforts to date.
- Conduct seven program meeting, events or seminars/workshops. This was an area in which we really did well, in my opinion. I counted a total of nine program meetings or events throughout the year, and a couple of them were joint events with organizations that have interests similar to our own, such as Michigan CHI and UxPA. In addition, Mary Jo David spearheaded a new effort to offer networking events at various locations and times of the day. A total of eight such events were held, and they appeared to be enjoyed by all who attended. This has to be, in my mind, one of our best efforts as a chapter this year.
- Complete the launch of our redesigned website. Thanks to the tireless efforts of Pat Martz, our webmaster and vice president (and therefore incoming president), along with many members who volunteered their ideas and support, we have a website that serves our interests even better than it did before. In fact, the improvements made and features added were so successful that this effort earned our chapter a Pacesetter Award from STC, thanks to a superb effort by Mary Jo in researching and submitting our application. This was without a doubt a crowning achievement for all involved and one that brings well-deserved attention to our chapter.
- Formulate and execute a scholarship competition program. This is a goal that we spent a lot of time discussing in our council meetings. Despite our efforts, however, we just did not come up with a practical, value-added solution. But as a result of our discussions, I believe that we are on the cusp of defining some other programs for both students and members that would be even more meaningful. These alternative programs could include workshops, seminars or possibly even chapter-sponsored student STC memberships. I’d really like to see us continue to investigate alternative programs such as these in the coming year.
So that’s how I see the past year shaking out – some wins, some losses and a lot of good effort and conversation, with the potential to build upon these ideas and produce an even stronger chapter in the future. I encourage every member to be a part of these efforts and make a contribution.
We have a strong team of elected officers coming on board for the 2014-2015 program year, including:
- Pat Martz, president
- Sharon McDonnell, vice president
- Alison Phillips, secretary
- Maryann Bowen, treasurer
Best wishes to our incoming team of officers! Let’s all get behind our officers and help them lead us in new directions and achieve new heights. As my 10th-grade chemistry teacher used to say, “You only get out of something what you put into it.”
What are you putting into STC-SM? And what do you want to get out of it?
Have a happy, safe summer.