BOARD OF GOVERNORSLeading change
During the most recent Board of Governors (BOG) audit of state and local societies, we found that member organizations enjoy varying degrees of involvement. And, as a former state society president and a current representative to my local organization, I have come to appreciate the energy and effort necessary to create and maintain a healthy society.
By Stacey L. Ishman, MD, MPH, Chair, BOG Rules and Regulations Committee
During the most recent Board of Governors (BOG) audit of state and local societies, we found that member organizations enjoy varying degrees of involvement. And, as a former state society president and a current representative to my local organization, I have come to appreciate the energy and effort necessary to create and maintain a healthy society. Whether we are reinvigorating an otolaryngology society or reenergizing our hospital boards, there is often a need for us to create the change that we want to see.
I turned to the book The Heart of Change, by John Kotter and Dan Cohen, which suggests that creating change is best accomplished by:
- Creating a sense of urgency to “do something”
- Building a guiding team with the characteristics and power to drive change
- Communicating to maximize buy-in
- Empowering action by removing barriers
- Creating short-term wins
- Continuing to drive the need for change and make it stick
The need to create a change needs to be appreciated by the people who can effect change and result in a sentiment that it has to happen right now. Although this may be accomplished by listing facts and figures, personal stories and appeals to our emotion can be the most powerful tools to create a call to “do something.”
Build a guiding team
In addition, the leadership must include individuals who listen, work together, create a plan, and remain energized to effect change. At the local society level, there may be a history of nominating the person who skipped the meeting, but the recruitment of individuals who are excited and regular participants will serve the organization better and engender greater trust in your members.
Dissemination of your new vision or work plan (or commitment to better dinner meetings) is also critical to engage members and recruit like-minded peers to leadership. It may be as simple as an email, phone call, or Bulletin article, but make sure that your words and actions match your goals.
As you begin to work your way through the impediments to participation, active elimination of barriers is critical to empowering action. This may require rotating meeting locations or finding dinner sponsorship or negotiating with staff to facilitate the work plan.
Creating short-term wins
Once the decision is made to make a change, creating some quick, visible changes to the areas that matter most to members will keep the momentum going and assist with motivation. This may mean that you take the lead on the achievable and most obvious areas needing change to build excitement.
Don’t let up
Keep necessary changes coming and eliminate needless work that does not add value.
2015 AAO-HNS/F Leadership Forum March 14-16
We will be addressing BOG issues such as these on Sunday, March 15, and Monday, March 16. The BOG Rules and Regulations Committee is also working to maximize society engagement in the BOG and assure that we are providing the tools that are most useful to our Members. Please join us or send your ideas and questions (firstname.lastname@example.org). I hope to see you there.