By Julie Deering, Issues Ink
Early tomorrow morning, I’ll walk outside to the sound of guns shooting and hunters trying to take home the “big one,” as it’s the opening weekend of deer season here in Missouri. I didn’t grow up hunting; in fact, I’d never touched a gun until I met Mike and he sent me through Washington Dulles International Airport with a rifle (30-06).
Anyways, through the years, I’ve learned that for me, I’ve got to aim higher than the bull’s-eye to actually hit the target. The same can be said for next week’s AAEA Board Meeting to be held Wednesday in Montgomery, Ala., in conjunction with the southeast regional workshop. Your elected leaders and lots of volunteers have been hard at work pushing our strategic plan forward with the aim of hitting the bull’s-eye.
During next week’s meeting, the board will have its sight set squarely on the following:
Target 1: Better Understand AAEA Members. The special membership taskforce met to discuss membership categories and a path forward. It was determined that we need to know more about our members. Who are they? What are their job responsibilities? How much time do they spend doing certain job functions? As such, the board will review a member survey that you will receive in the coming weeks. On behalf of the board, I encourage you to take the time to answer the survey. Your answers will help provide direction for the taskforce and Membership Committee.
Target 2: Launch a New Membership Campaign. It’s time to get competitive and show your support of the organization by spreading the word, and good work, of AAEA. Our membership goal this year is to have 400 paying members. More details to come on the competition, but if you haven’t already renewed your membership, go ahead and do it now at http://agcommnetwork.com/membership/.
Target 3: Expand the Sponsor Pipeline. Each board member will be asked to connect the members of the Sponsorship Committee with three to five potential sponsors who are not currently on the prospect list. If you have any suggestions or know someone or a company that we should reach out to, please connect with Samantha Kilgore, our executive director, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Target 4: Donate to PIF. The Professional Improvement Foundation (PIF) funds a number of professional development opportunities, as well as scholarships. For more on PIF, check out Kelly Schwalbe’s article in last week’s Byline at http://agcommnetwork.com/why-does-pif-exist-and-why-should-i-care/. We are encouraging each board member to make a $10 to $15 contribution to PIF — every little bit helps.
Target 5: Change the Fiscal Year. The association’s membership year is different from its fiscal year, which is a source of confusion when it comes to membership renewals and some of our campaigns and promotions. It’s been mentioned several times in the past few years that we look to align these to help streamline processes and avoid confusion. There are no fees associated with this change, but the board would be required to develop a budget for half a year during the transition period with the full change in place starting January 1, 2019.
With a great deal of practice, and any luck, we aim to hit the bull’s-eye next week.