Anyone here ever volunteered to be on a board or sit as an executive for an organization? ☝🏻
If you have, you are going to resonate with the words I write. 👋🏻
If you haven’t, imagine a group of people drawn to an organization for altruistic or personal reasons. Imagine a place where you are trying to keep an organization going or move it forward in some way. And each person might have their own way!
I have been fortunate to serve on two distinct and diverse boards the last few years. One with strong leadership and one that blows in the wind (Ha, another wind comment!). It’s been a great opportunity for me to use my gifts of organization, listening and help bring people together. I have loved 95% of it.
The 5% that I haven’t loved is my wish for 2023.
“If you are going to complain about how someone is volunteering or what’s happening in a volunteer organization, make suggestions for change and PERSONALLY volunteer to be part of the change!”
I have read emails, often lengthy emails, and heard complaints about very interesting things in the world of volunteering. The deliverer of the complaint rarely wants to do anything about their complaint and this baffles me.
I recently wrote a letter to a board with a complaint, yes, I complain too. But with my complaint came suggestions for change that I would be invested in as a volunteer. You make see me reading books at a Okanagan Regional Library Storytime soon.
My complaint came in the form of a children’s story time that was led by an entertainer that 95% of the time performs in bars, wineries and lounges. I simply looked at the person’s resume, as I don’t know them personally. I learned that the process is that anyone in our community can sign-up to read to children. The library doesn’t look at the person’s resume or even ask for a criminal record check. After learning this, I offered to help the library find others in our community that can perform and inspire children. Random fact: I discovered that the “adult entertainer” performing during the children’s library story time was a personal acquaintance of the marketing manager. As people in leadership know it is sometimes easier to “go with what we know”. I am going to help the library get to know some amazing people in the community that I know.
Complaint + time investment in change = movement forward
Complaint + nothing = resounding GONG!
Yup, a GONG! The complaints I have read and have heard have been nothing but a gong. I didn’t see any good come from them, nor did I see any change happening afterwards.
For this one year, let’s all agree to celebrate with JOY and complain with ideas that include ACTION, not just a GONG that doesn’t go anywhere!
Have an epic Sunday folks and love what you do.