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Leadership Series: Congratulations,
You are Elected: Part 2

by the Mississippi Cooperative Extension Service


President

Helpful aids

Know the objectives or purposes of your organization and keep them in mind as you plan and direct the programs.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Plan year's program and work the plan.
How you might do the job
Study situation and needs of your community.

Helpful aid

Study time schedule of a successful organization.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Start meetings on time and close them on time.
How you might do the job
Be on time yourself and start meeting if there is only one person present. Allow time for each part on program and keep to that allotted time.

Helpful aid

Keep in touch with whole group. Avoid giving too much work to special friends. Learn parliamentary procedures.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Conduct meeting properly.
How you might do the job
Follow parliamentary procedures. Don't be afraid to call on the parliamentarian for help. Have a written agenda.

Helpful aids

Be humble, ask advice of others; respect ideas of others. Be willing to stay in office long enough to do a good job, but not long enough to keep others from having a term.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Keep membership active. Encourage all officers and members to attend all meetings, and have parts on program ready. Learn the interests and capabilities of membership and assign duties accordingly.
How you might do the job
Rotate club meetings so that every member is hostess or co-hostess in the year or two years. Have every club member participate at least once during the year. Rotate officers and committee work. Use membership committee to remind members of meeting. Use program chair to remind those on program to be ready. Watch members' reactions at meetings and how well they come up with assignments. Visit homes.

Helpful aid

Study other programs and strive constantly to improve your programs.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Have a well-rounded program.
How you might do the job
Plan programs that fit the needs of your group. Each program should include inspirational, educational, and recreational features. Adapt programs to age levels of group.

Helpful aids

Study how to get along with people. Remember the basic needs of every individual include: new experience, recognition, response, and security.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Delegate responsibilities.
How you might do the job
Assign all work to committees. Some committees will be temporary and some permanent. Give every member some job before the year is over. Once assigned, have faith enough to believe they will do a good job. Don't expect every job to be done as you would do it. Make every member feel important and that each member belongs. Recognize achievement.

Helpful aid

Seek every method, help, and advice in officer training.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
See that each person assigned a job has specific instructions or training in the assigned task.
How you might do the job
Help plan officer and committee training meetings.

Helpful aid

Learn how to evaluate yourself and programs.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Summarize and evaluate year's work.
How you might do the job
Check results with goals set. Have committees to check on progress of work.

Helpful aids

When you have stepped out of office, be willing to help new officers, but stay in the background. Your group already knows you can lead. Be a good follower.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Assist incoming officers.
How you might do the job
Give file of material to incoming officer and explain duties.

Vice President

Helpful aids

Know the objectives of the organization and types of programs held in the past.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Assume president's responsibility when necessary.
How you might do the job
Constantly be on the alert for new ideas for programs. Be aware of the program at all times.

Helpful aids

Understand the president, the plans for the organization, and the president's strengths and weaknesses. Know duties of president. You should know all committee members and the jobs they are doing. Know the program so well you can take over for the president.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
As coworker with the president, be responsible to see that planned programs are implemented.
How you might do the job
Keep in close touch with president. Check carefully with each one on the program beforehand to see if he or she is ready and will be on time. Check with facilitator for any materials needed for those on the program.

Secretary

Helpful aid

Know how to keep accurate records that are legible and complete.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Understand your organization and the duties of each officer.
How you might do the job
Be a part of program planning, and immediately write plans in Secretary's Book.

Helpful aid

Understand the purpose and procedures of Secretary's Book you are to use.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Record all goals of club immediately after they made, and write up accomplishments as soon as work is done.

Helpful aid

Learn how to be systematic in keeping valuable papers and in keeping records.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Keep up-to-date records. Select most important points of program. Be sure to include all details.
Give president a list of any unfinished business before meeting. Keep an account of all accomplishments of all committees. Complete Secretary's Book and urge each member to study it. At meetings, stand to read minutes, but sit for roll call.
How you might do the job
Take notes during meeting, and write up as soon as possible.
Make list and call president's attention to it before date of meeting.
Ask for written report of all temporary and permanent committees.

Treasurer

Helpful aids

Use simple bookkeeping methods. Know the organization's plans for all disbursements. Also, know how to raise funds and how to be chair of finance committee.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Accept, keep, and pay out all funds belonging to your organization.
Keep organization informed on its financial status. Serve as chair of budget committee.
How you might do the job
Pay everything by check, or keep a signed receipt for all money spent. Receive money from all regular and special funds. Keep bank account of organization's funds. Pay out money only upon authorization of membership or according to budget setup. Make brief oral report, and give written report to secretary. Make plans with committee for organization's way of financing. After studying requests of different committees for funds, help make budget.

Reporter

Helpful aids

Know your media editors and seek advice and help. Find out deadlines for news.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Announce each meeting through newspaper. Start with the most important feature of the meeting and include objective of each major activity -- give time, place, date. Get news to the media in plenty of time for your story to come out before the program/meeting.
How you might do the job
Work with president and vice president and others on the program so you will give correct information.

Helpful aid

Know what is going on in your organization.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Write a follow-up of the meeting.
How you might do the job
Take notes at meetings.

Helpful aids

Learn the basic rules for writing.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Keep local radio stations informed of the meeting.
How you might do the job
Be accurate in quoting. Be sure the person whose name you use knows how you will use it before printing.

Helpful aids

Study your local situation and find out channels you have for reporting.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Take advantage of any sponsorship for your organization on TV and radio.

Helpful aids

Attend training meetings for reporters.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Write articles on unusual activity or organization or outstanding accomplishments of individuals.
How you might do the job
Send information to magazines interested in the type of work your organization is doing.

Helpful aid

Learn by doing.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Understand editor's point of view. The editor may not be able to print all your news.
How you might do the job
Visit your editor and seek advice. Accept changes in your story as the editor's privilege. Study these changes to improve your writing.

Parliamentarian

Helpful aids

Know rules of order and parliamentary procedures.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Be ready to rule when president asks for a ruling.
How you might do the job
Keep a pocket-sized book of parliamentary procedures with you for all meetings. Be familiar with the general rules.

Helpful aids

Keep on hand a pocket-sized, simple parliamentary procedures booklet.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Arrange for teaching all officers some general parliamentary procedures. Teach all members of your group some rudiments of parliamentary procedure. Time the business session of your meetings, and study ways to shorten without sacrificing the quality. Show the group its accomplishments at close of year. Assist your successor.
How you might do the job
Select time after they are elected and before they take office. Ask for help from trained personnel to help with this training. Give each officer a bulletin on parliamentary procedures. (You may obtain these from your county Extension office.) Ask for a time on program. Present in skit form, true and false, contest, illustrative talk, or a demonstration. Work with your president, and be certain that this is desired. The president is the executive officer, and your plans should always be discussed with the president before proceeding. Make a report showing your goals, what you did to reach the goals, and some specific results your group accomplished. Give the new parliamentarian your folder showing what you did and how you did things. Also provide a copy of the year's report.

Project Leader

(The project leader's job is different from that of the president or other officers. Instead of having organization duties, the project leader is responsible for getting subject matter across to the people.)


Helpful aid

Keep abreast of resource material available in helping with work.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Make a study of the need for your particular subject matter in your community or area.
How you might do the job
Make your group aware of the needs for improvement in your subject matter.

Helpful aids

Find out the number of meetings you are expected to assist with, according to year's plan of work
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Get all available training for your job. Plan your procedure for meetings in advance and do it carefully. Check with your president.
How you might do the job
Give demonstrations or illustrative talks, depending on ideas you have to put across.

Helpful aid

Study the problems and needs of people in community.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Have some teaching objectives or targets to shoot at -- and stick to them.
How you might do the job
Expand your audience by giving the demonstrations to your club, other organized groups, unorganized groups, and individuals.

Helpful aid

Make sure of the type of program you are expected to promote in your subject matter.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Find out what your group is doing about the project. Get the members to tell some of their experiences. This creates interest, gives new ideas, and gives group participation. Visualize your main items -- colored crayons on large white or brown paper can be used. Teach only the main things. Don't try to cover everything. Give reasons why the project and the ideas you want to teach are important. Don't read your lesson. Develop a plan for teaching. Believe in the subject yourself and it will be easier to teach.
How you might do the job
Give timely information during the year. Be source of information in your area. Be enthusiastic, and show interest in the program you promote. At the end of year, collect data and compile a report on work accomplished. Make recommendations for continuing program if problems have not been solved. Assist successor in understanding what has been done. Summarize. At close of session, give the group a chance to make personal commitments. If you have a follow-up demonstration, review previous lesson.

Committee Chairs

There are two types of committees: organizational and subject matter. The organizational committees are to keep the organization oiled and parts running smoothly so the goals and objectives of the organization can be met. The subject matter committees are responsible for making people aware of their needs, arousing enough interest in a group to make the members want to do something about the situation...and to furnish information that points toward a solution.

There is also a difference in the time of service of a committee. The organizational and subject matter committees usually are standing committees.

Sometimes temporary committees are assigned a definite job to be finished at a given time. When the task is completed, the committee is dissolved. Whatever type of committee you belong to, you will need a plan of work.

Suggested outline for committee work

Step 1 State problem
One-half of mothers with young children work away from home.

Step 2 Establish goal
To make a day nursery available for the children of working mothers.

Step 3 Decide what will be done
Committee will make a survey to see how many women would use day nursery in _____________ Community; will study cost and see how it would operate.

Step 4 Set deadline
Survey to be made by November 1. Mrs. Jones will contact nursery and make appointment. Members will know by October 1. Call meeting of all working mothers November 15.

Step 5 State results expected
A nursery available for all children of working mothers.


Committee Chairs

Helpful aids

Find out from president what is expected of the committee. Get information from state, county, or area chairs if your organization is affiliated.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Define committee's job.
How you might do the job
Give the committee members the committee's assignment. Work with the group to define committee's job.

Helpful aid

Know all you can about the members' interests, abilities, and needs.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Organize the committee to get best job done with the least effort.
How you might do the job
Delegate responsibilities to each committee member.

Helpful aid

Study program planning.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Get the committees to function efficiently.
How you might do the job
Make a plan of work. Decide on jobs needing first attention.

Helpful aid

Learn how to lead a discussion group.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Call as many committee meetings as necessary to carry out the assignment.
How you might do the job
Call meeting at the convenience of most committee members. Give members every possible opportunity to express themselves. Arrange seating to encourage discussion.

Helpful aid

Study situations and what groups might be helpful.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Get outside help.
How you might do the job
Ask other organizations, agencies, business firms -- anyone whose work relates to your subject -- for help.

Helpful aid

Study situations and what groups might be helpful.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Get committee's job done well and on or before scheduled time.
How you might do the job
Keep committee working. Supply the inspiration necessary to motivate each member to do a quality job. Be enthusiastic and maintain a high degree of optimism.

Helpful aids

Study report forms if furnished. If not, make forms.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Keep membership informed on progress.
How you might do the job
Make regular reports to membership. At each meeting, ask each member for a progress report.

Helpful aid

Study other reports to help make your reports interesting.
Duties experienced leaders recommend
Report your year's work.
How you might do the job
Make reports interesting by giving special feature skits or placards.

Ten Commandments for Successful Leadership

  1. Believe wholeheartedly in what you are doing if you would inspire the desired spirit in others.
  2. Do not get so far ahead of the people in your group they cannot follow you.
  3. Look in the mirror each morning to see the person who is to blame for your previous failures. Do not alibi.
  4. Strive to be one of the best authorities in your field of labor, and tell what you know convincingly and effectively.
  5. Make friends by being a friend and by observing the rules of friendship.
  6. Do not get bitter toward those who would defeat your program or who are to you personally unfriendly. "Whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad."
  7. Beware of too much personal publicity. Permit your name to be associated only with important matters if you would be highly regarded by the public.
  8. Be content with getting the job done; do not be concerned with personal credit...credit will be recognized and given where credit is due.
  9. Put service above self. It pays dividends.
  10. Do not get into a rut -- change jobs or locations if necessary, but do not dissipate your precious time and talent.


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About the Author:

This document has been produced by the Extension Service of Mississippi State University in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and is reprinted with permission.



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