It’s February. Do you know where your new GSA leadership is?
Here at GSA Network, we hear and see what happens when current graduating GSA leaders don’t have an action plan for when they leave. One of the most frustrating things that could happen to your GSA is to do some amazing work and then not have anyone in place to keep it going next year.
So, young grasshopper, what do you do?
You start building the younger leaders, of course!
Yes, it’s “only” February but it’s super important to start training the younger members to take your place as a leader. Is someone really interested in running meetings? Does a member have art skills? Is there a younger student who sparkles at speaking to folks and getting them interested in joining the club? Look for qualities in your members that will help to keep your GSA going for next year and start training them now. Be sure to get help from your advisor, too, as they can help you target those who are showing leadership potential!
Here are some things you can do:
- Train new members in the rules, history and projects of your GSA.
- Spread out responsibility to all members throughout the school year, not just at the end.
- Take turns facilitating meetings so everyone (especially younger GSA members) knows what it feels like to be up front.
- This will prepare them for a possible leadership role next year!
- Network, Network, Network! Network with other organizations on and off campus.
- Create a “Co” leadership structure in which one upper-class person and one lower class person share leadership for the last semester.
- Schedule annual club elections in January when you are back from winter break, that way you will always know who will lead your club into the new school year.
- Re-Register with GSA Network! If your club advisor or leader changes, re-register your club so we can make sure your club gets GSA Network resources.
- Create your “GSA Survival Guide,” a binder passed on from one GSA leader to the next. Include all of the challenges and highlights of the GSA over the years. This is a great way to keep your history and see how other students handled challenges and it will inspire your members for years.
The buddy system works wonders, too. Have a younger student “shadow” you and the other leaders so they can see exactly what you do in order to lead your GSA. That way, they’ll already be prepared for the next year and will know the ropes! Also, keep those bonding activities going for your club members. Meet up over the summer, eat lunch together, get to know your members on a personal level.
For more ideas, be sure to check out our resource sheet on transitioning leadership.
And don’t forget that your lovely and super knowledgeable Program Coordinators can help you with ideas, gathering resources, and even with a transition plan. Why? Because that’s what we do! Be sure to contact us for anything regarding your GSA needs.
So don’t leave your GSA hangin’! Get on the ball and make sure the hard work you’ve done this year with your club does not go to waste. Make it work!