Attending my first ASTD Chapter Leader Day

What a great day! It started with the Chapter Leader Day, and ended with a report out by Tony Bingham, the President and CEO of ASTD. In between, I attended three great learning sessions. I plan to share what I learned.

The meeting began by describing the theme for this year’s conference: Achieving New Heights. It is a focus on Networking, Sharing, and Learning. There was a tremendous amount of emphasis on social media and communities of practice. They were displaying a Tweetchat of the meeting using the hashtag of #ASTD2012CLD. This was definitely an example of the Networking part of the conference.

Tweetchat of Chapter Leader Day
Tweetchat of Chapter Leader Day

The next part of the meeting addressed the idea of Sharing, specifically, sharing our successes. In fact, they introduced the Sharing Our Success (SOS) stories portion of the ASTD Web site.

Next, chapter leaders by briefed on the “new” Next Level Tool. As the ASTD Website explains, “Find out if your chapter is an emerging, solid, or high performing chapter. See what resources are available to help move your chapter to the next level. Take this assessment now as part of your board planning and build a stronger chapter today!” It looks like a promising tool to help me get my feet under me as I take on my new role. The tool  addresses six dimensions: communication, community outreach, financial, governance, membership, and professional development. The tool can be found in the chapter leadership section of the ASTD site.

Next, we broke up into groups to brainstorm ideas on various topics. There were three different sessions, and you had to find a new session each round. I focused on membership, professional development, and the southwest region. Lots of great ideas were shared. I will be bring back  a number of them to the Northern Rockies Chapter board to discuss. Here are some of the ideas that resonated with me:

  • Increase volunteerism within chapter by soliciting  for specific help.
  • Create VP of Human Resources to manage volunteers.
  • Conduct a regional conference with chapters along the Front Range.
  • Recognizing volunteers with free or discounted meeting
  • Publish annual report.
  • Recognize the volunteer of the month with certificates and web recognition
  • Create a wish list for projects that could be handled by volunteers.
  • Establish or publicize open door policy for board meetings.
  • Conduct virtual training meetings for learning CPLP.
  • Show how meeting presentations are linked back to core competences.
  • Allow new members to sign up and pay for both ASTD and NRC membership through the chapter website and have chapter pay for ASTD membership.
  • Explore the use of Google Voice as phone capability for the chapter; it could result in money saved.
  • For volunteer opportunities, play to our skills, e.g., conduct train the trainer course for habitat for humanities.

For the first time working with this group, I was pleased with the product and results. The rest of the day went equally well.

I am excited for the rest of the session. I will let you know how it goes.