President of Beta Alpha Psi (UTS Chapter)
“Take the time to talk with each committee member and get to know what they like, what they hope to get out of their role and what they would like to achieve throughout the year.”
Insight #1 – Be part of a family
Being president of a society doesn't mean just putting a fancy title onto your resume, it means leading your team and knowing how everyone works. Take the time to talk with each committee member and get to know what they like, what they hope to get out of their role and what they would like to achieve throughout the year. From this, you not only create a strong team, but you create a family of people who you can trust to organise events, talk to sponsors and put forward brilliant ideas. The culture of your team is so important for people to feel valued and to enjoy this extracurricular work. Go out for dinners or drinks, create a non-serious work chat, you'll also come out of the society with (hopefully) an amazing group of friends.
Insight #2 – Communicate
During busy seasons such as exam periods or assessment periods, it's easy to put your society commitments to the side. This is A-OK because you are first and foremost still a student studying a degree. But, as a president or anyone on a committee really, it is important that you *communicate* what you're doing with everyone else.
If you need some time off to do a 50% weighted essay and you know planning for an event is coming up, let your team know and see if anyone else can fill in for you during a meeting, or see if anyone can take minutes and relay them back to you (this is also a really important skill to build up in your exec committees - succession planning!).
Insight #3 - Delegate
It is also A-OK to delegate work and not take on too much for yourself personally. Even though it feels like you have sole responsibility of making events go smoothly, it is the team's responsibility as well. I know that I have a habit of taking on too much work than I should - but that is because I am a perfectionist and I want to see work done to a high consistent level. However, your team are there because they are capable individuals themselves. Don't be scared to delegate and always communicate if you feel overwhelmed.
Make your work-load transparent
Consider utilizing an online platform (e.g. Trello, Google Sheets) or establishing a system to track work-flow to maximise communication.
Being able to see at any time what every member of the team is working on is valuable for many reasons, including:
(1) Your team knows what you’re spending your time on and can ‘manage up’ if needed.
You know what your team is working on and can refocus or redirect to ensure the whole team is working on the biggest projects.