Friday, September 25, 2015

Division Leaders Workshop held at IASB

Twenty-seven IASB division leaders recently completed a workshop designed to help attendees strengthen their leadership skills, understand their roles and responsibilities, and network with their peers. Division officers in attendance included division directors, division chairs, vice-chairs, and resolutions chairs.

Each of IASB’s 21 geographic divisions identifies and elects its own officers. All elect a director to serve on the Association’s board and to report regularly back to their division on IASB Board of Directors’ activities.

During the workshop, which was held Sep. 12 at the IASB offices in Springfield, facilitators stressed that everyone has the ability to develop the many leadership skills and competencies that make for a good leader. Attendees were told of two areas of personal growth and development that are essential to leadership success: self-confidence and a positive attitude.

The workshop, which will be repeated in Lisle in January, featured detailed presentations about the Association’s history and understanding the roles and responsibilities of the various division officers. For example, the role of the division chair is to preside at meetings of the division and become involved with its committee work by serving as an ex-officio member or by appointing committee members.

Reatha Owen, IASB field services director, facilitated the program. She was joined by Larry Dirks, Laura Martinez, and Patrick Rice, field services directors; Sandra Kwasa, director of board development; and Deanna Sullivan, governmental relations director.

Kwasa led table exercises on “how good are your leadership skills” that pointed attendees to a leadership development website where they could learn more about the main topic of her presentation. She touched on the importance of developing empathy and listening, and described “transformational leadership,” a leadership style that involves creating an inspiring vision of the future, motivating followers to reach for it, managing implementation, and developing the ability of the members of their teams to become more effective.

Rice led table discussions on planning division meetings to encourage the leaders to share new ideas on what to offer at division events and how to increase attendance and networking.

Owen explained the training opportunity was developed not just to enable the division leaders to develop greater leadership skills and association understanding, but also to recognize them for their service to the Association.