EXECUTIVE COUNCIL: WHAT I WISH I KNEW
Serving on Executive Council can be extremely rewarding, but it can also come with its challenges. As new officers begin to fill their roles for 2022, we asked former Executive Council officers what they wish they would have known before taking office:
ASKING FOR HELP IS THE BEST THING YOU CAN DO.
“I initially thought asking for help would make it seem like I wasn’t able to do anything myself. Through my years on Executive Council, I’ve realized that asking for help doesn’t change your ability to do something—it just makes it easier to handle.”
Lexi Harrison, Zeta Zeta–Worchester Polytechnic Institute
2020-22 Vice President–Recruitment, 2020-21 Vice President–Philanthropy
YOU WILL LEARN LESSONS YOU CARRY WITH YOU FOREVER.
“I’ve learned so many interpersonal skills and gotten better at navigating tough conversations. Grades are a sensitive topic, and this position has helped me grow so much as a leader and communicator. I’ve had conversations with my sisters about hardships in their lives—both academic and personal—and found ways to support them and meet them where they were. This position has helped me understand that nothing is one size fits all.”
Sydney Crims, Delta Rho–Sonoma State University
2020-21 Vice President–Academic Excellence
BEING AN OFFICER CAN COMPLICATE YOUR FRIENDSHIPS.
“It can be hard knowing your friends might be upset about decisions you help make during Executive Council. I found that many members do not know how Executive Council decisions are made, so I’ve set up information sessions and resources to educate our members about the voting process and why we sometimes have to make hard decisions for the overall benefit of the chapter.”
Natalie Roberts, Epsilon Chi–Kansas State University
2019-20 Director of Property
SOME PROGRESS IS BETTER THAN NO PROGRESS.
“What I’ve learned from my experiences as Vice President–Recruitment and Chapter President is sometimes we don’t hit the big goals— and that’s okay. I have come to realize sometimes we just need to make progress. It’s not always about hitting those large goals, but it’s about creating the momentum for the next officer or officer team to complete the goal. Big goals take time, and it’s okay if it doesn’t occur during your term. Success is not achieved overnight, and small steps in the right direction are better than large steps in the wrong one.”
Cammy Park, Gamma Beta–Florida State University
2020-21 Chapter President, 2019-20 Vice President–Recruitment
YOUR DECISIONS ARE NO LONGER ONLY ABOUT YOURSELF.
“I’ve always loved expressing myself through my social media and editing pictures, so Vice President–Marketing felt like the perfect starting point in my leadership journey with Alpha Gam. When it came time for me to start posting, I had no idea how to adequately represent my chapter. I was used to only having to represent myself on social media, but now my posts represented my entire chapter, and I wanted to represent it well. This was a constant struggle with posting nearly every day, but more time came with more confidence.”
Malori Butler, Theta Beta–Auburn University at Montgomery
2022-23 Chapter President, 2020-21 Vice President–Administration, 2020-21 Vice President–Philanthropy and 2019-20 Vice President–Marketing
ORGANIZATION IS KEY.
“I was fairly organized before serving in my position, but I soon realized I needed to be extremely organized to manage all the tasks and requirements. I still use the organization and time management skills I learned during my time as VP–Marketing, and it has made me an even more organized and detail-oriented person. I loved my time serving my chapter as VP–Marketing and wouldn’t trade it for the world! I suggest getting a planner—it will be your lifesaver.”
Caitlin Brewer, Theta Omicron–Western Carolina University
2019-20 Vice President–Marketing
MINOR PROBLEMS DO NOT DEFINE YOUR SUCCESS AS A LEADER.
“Being Chapter President has taught me how to problem-solve. I tend to get frustrated when there are numerous issues, and I begin to think, what am I doing wrong? A few minor issues within your chapter do NOT define your success as a leader. Adapt and overcome, and your chapter will be better because of you!”
Riley Echtenkamp, Theta Psi–Austin Peay State University
2020-21 Chapter President, 2018-2020 Vice President–Administration
ANYTHING CAN BECOME YOUR JOB, AND YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO JUMP IN.
“Though many people think of Vice President–Administration as behind-the-scenes work, I have often been called upon to assist in various other ways. I look for patterns in member attendance and engagement, and I frequently collaborate with the Vice President–Chapter Wellness to help members who may be feeling disconnected. Additionally, I work closely with the Vice President–New Member Experience to help communicate membership expectations to new members and ease in their transition into the chapter. I originally did not expect these roles to be connected to my office.”
Keren Bard, Gamma Beta–Florida State University
2020-21 Vice President–Administration
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