Search icon Looking for something?

Managing STC's Transformation
2006, Q1 (March 05, 2007)
by Suzanna Laurent, STC President and Associate Fellow
(Editor’s note: Reprinted with permission from the March 2006 issue of Intercom.)

Change is the name of the game today, and organizations that can’t change quickly aren’t going to be around for long,” says William Bridges in Managing Transitions. He also says, “Making changes has never been more important than it is today. Industries are consolidating, and the last one in is a loser. Technology is transforming how business is done, and holding on to the familiar old ways will leave an organization out in the cold.”

Rob Moran, STC’s interim executive director and an experienced transition management specialist, recommended that the board read Managing Transitions. Bridges stresses that when people resist change, they are struggling to protect their comfortable world and the meaning and identity they get from it. As we transition, we realize that the results we are seeking will depend on having our members stop doing things the old way and start doing things a new way. Here are some important improvements we are making.

New Executive Director

The search is progressing well. The committee, managed by Deirdre Murr, has an organizational description and a job description. It has interviewed and hired a search firm to help us find the right person by May.

In the meantime, we are improving our policies and procedures. The board and staff are working collaboratively on ways to be of greater service and value to our members. One exciting initiative will be to add new leadership at the staff level. We are currently searching for a membership director who will bring not only a comprehensive knowledge of membership development programs but also marketing, product development, and branding. This person will be expected to strengthen our relationship with our chapters and special interest groups. In addition, we are exploring the creation of a new position—educational initiatives director—who would spearhead our efforts to develop new educational offerings, bolster our corporate sponsorship programs, and position STC as an educational leader.

New Communication Techniques

One way we are communicating with members is by asking for your input. We sought your ideas on developing the STC Forum, localized dues, leadership community, board discussion items, committees, and more. We will soon seek your input on a new strategic plan and vision and a communication strategy. Comprehensive board meeting reports and our 2005 IRS Form 990 are posted on the Web site (http://www.stc.org). We are particularly interested in stimulating thought and generating constructive solutions.

We are providing new ways for members to get the information they seek. If you cannot find an answer to a question about STC, submit your question to Ask STC on our Web site. You can go to Current Initiatives to learn what’s new. I am sending frequent messages from the President to all members.

Previously, the Administrative Directory has been available only to community leaders, but that information will soon be available on our Web site. The approximately fifty Society-level committees will also be listed, with links to their managers’ e-mail adresses.

New Programs

A pilot educational program held in Crystal City, Virginia, offering several two-day courses was extremely well received. The post-session feedback revealed that 96 percent of the attendees would return for another similar program, and 89 percent said they received outstanding value for their dollars spent.

A localized dues program is in place. We used the World Bank model and criteria from similar organizations to develop the program. Although it currently will affect the dues received from only 2 percent of our members, it allows us to take another step toward becoming a truly global organization.

Our new Corporate Value program is also being piloted. We know that making it more attractive for companies to pay their employees’ STC dues will add more value for members.

The details have been finalized for a zero-based budgeting program for community funding. By the time you read this message, the pilot should already be under way by several communities. We hope to approve the new model for some communities by May, so that more funds will be available to those communities that need them the most.

Here’s How You Can Help

To make the greatest gain during this period, we need your help. Please send us your input when requested so we can work toward providing the new services and programs that you feel are the most beneficial. It’s an exciting time, so let’s work together to grow STC and ensure an organization that is essential in the careers of technical communicators.

Suzanna can be reached at slaurent@prodigy.net. End of article.

More articles like this...
Comments powered by Disqus.