We discussed what an appropriate topic could be for a CIPS Saskatchewan blog and somehow came to the conclusion ‘CIPS Saskatchewan’ itself may be a good one. Some members are unaware that we now have a CIPS Saskatchewan Executive Director. Our ED, Maria Galati has been instrumental in getting the quality and quantity of the CIPS Saskatchewan events to historical levels of professionalism and attendance. We have had amazing speakers at our luncheons, and the Spring Seminar had world class keynotes such as Larry DeBoever and Mark Saltzman. More speaker information and presentations can be found at http://sk.cips.ca/
Another person who has pushed the current board to improve local governance is our current President and Chair of the Board, Dean Hartley. Dean has been a great driver for documentation of the board position mandates and a clearer definition of the portfolios. Through strategic planning sessions and many board meetings the board has newly drafted strengths and weakness lists, mission and values statements, and strategic and tactical goals for the future. I would recommend at least one annual retreat for all provincial boards. For the last 2 years ours has been in Craik, SK at the EcoCenter. Since we have some board members from Regina and some from Saskatoon, Craik is a great half way point.
The last item I did want to mention is the latest tool in the board’s tool kit, which are the social media tools so available to us. During the last OEC (CIPS Office of the Executive Council) conference call I attended, there was a question posed to the group about the looming deficit budget handling for CIPS, at a National level. The discussion of course was one of concern and pondering on how it should be dealt with. It was mentioned that the national executive should pose some of these types of decisions back to the membership. Greg Lane’s (current Chair of the OEC) question was, but how do we engage the membership in a timely manner to provide feedback on the decisions we need to make. Some of us recommended the social media tools, such as blogs, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn. I believe this is the future for connecting with our membership old and new ones. This is the discussion point I posted on the LinkedIn CIPS Group last week:
“I'm posting a discussion point after the CIPS OEC (Office of Executive Council) call. We had a discussion on the deficit budget and how to get membership & provinces involved in the decision making. There are many questions as to the best way to get the membership involved in the strategic planning of the organization. Any comments or ideas?”
There were a lot of great comments, but one in particular I want to share is from CIPS Saskatchewan’s own Dean Hartley:
“I would like to see CIPS National priorities to be as follows:
1. Maintain the elements of the I.S.P. designation, which includes the Body of Knowledge and the Code of Conduct. This is absolutely core to CIPS.
2. Generate, across Canada, public awareness of the I.S.P. Existing I.S.P. holders will see more value in their I.S.P. designation if more people have a general awareness of it. If CIPS National focuses on I.S.P. awareness, this will make it easier for Provincial and local CIPS sections to ask employers in their geographical area to put “I.S.P. Preferred” in their job ads. That in turn, will create more I.S.P. holders.
3. Continue to offer the provinces centralized services for membership registration services.
4. In a real distant 4th, expand the International Recognition of the I.S.P. and ITCP designations. If budgets don’t allow all four priorities, drop #4. The top 3 are critical. Once there is more public awareness, there will be more members and I.S.P. holders. In time, there will be more funds to pursue international recognition.”
I still want more discussion and feedback from YOU the membership. If you have a linkedin, twitter or facebook account connect to the CIPS groups and get talking to other members, potential members and get reconnected to CIPS which is you and me, there is no magic here folks! It’s just plain old (and young) IT professionals sharing ideas and engaging in an industry we love.