Serving in a president role of a student organization is a great learning experience for students. While some students may do it for the title, there are many more students who do it to gain value experience and life skills. I’m fortunate that I work with the students who want the opportunity to grow as leaders. They use the presidency role to make a difference on campus.
At Ithaca College, there are three programming boards:
After Dark (late night programing)
Bureau of Concerts (BOC, concert programming board)
Student Activities Board (SAB, hosts at least one program a week from comedy, music, special events and films)
I have the pleasure of advising these three amazing student organizations and working with very talented students. This year, I wanted to understand the learning that actually occurred while serving as the Executive Chair of the programming boards. Most importantly, I wanted to understand how I could assist them more in this role and prepare them to be successful. Hence, I developed an assessment model to assess the three executive chairs. There are three learning outcomes in this assessment.
By serving as presidents of a programming board students will be able to:
Identify and plan all aspects of an event/program including, budgeting, marketing and evaluating the event.
Demonstrates the necessary competencies to manage groups, including but not limited to meeting management, member recruitment, retention and motivation, etc.
Provide support and guidance to the members of the group.
After using a few different tools of measurement, I identified what each student learned from serving as the executive chair of their student organization. (If you would like to see the full assessment, please email firstname.lastname@example.org).
Based on the feedback received from their peers and themselves, it was evident that all three executive chairs needed to delegate more. Learning how to delegate was something all three of them hoped to learn from this experience. Although they did delegate a little, they, as well as their peers, believed they could delegate more.
This evidence made me think more about delegation and why so many people struggle with this task. I know that even in my own experience I struggle with delegating. So why is it difficult for us to delegate? For many it is the fear of letting go of the control and trusting someone else to complete the task. For others it is the belief that asking for help is a sign of weakness.
Whatever reason you do not delegate, I wanted to share three important benefits of delegating tasks:
1. Save Time
When you delegate you free up time to work on other things. Imagine being able to leave at 5pm or having more time to work on those work things you always wanted to do.
2. Achieve More/Better Results
With having more time you can accomplish other tasks and be more productive. Getting a fresh and different perspective will allow you to try a different approach or learn something.
3. Build Team
Delegating a task to someone means you are ensuring trust in your members. It increases trust and communication between your colleagues.
As a student affairs professional, how often do you delegate? Who do you delegate to? I challenge you to delegate one of your tasks to someone. You’ll set an example to students of the value and importance of delegating. The more we delegate the more time we have to focus on tasks with a purpose that will allow us to achieve more and build a better community. Happy Delegating!