There Are No Bosses In Kiwanis
Kiwanis should be (and is) filled with incredible servant-leaders. After all, Kiwanis teaches students how to become servant-leaders. Kiwanis is an organization of member-volunteers. It’s been shown that volunteers cooperate and work best when they know why they are doing things. Leaders explain WHY. Bosses tend to tell workers what to do without explanation. “Do it, ‘cuz I said so.” Check out the video HERE to understand the other differences between bosses and leaders.
Leadership has another problem, sometimes ego gets in the way. TED.com has a video that explains why “The Rarest Commodity Is Leadership Without Ego”.
Have you ever tried to push a chain (or a rope)? Doesn’t work too well, does it? It’s a lot better to lead a chain (of command) to get it to where you want it to be. Adding more management doesn’t make it any better. More layers of management may not agree with or understand the goal. Or the managers have ego too and may believe they have a better method to arrive at the goal.
So I find it curious when Kiwanis rolls out these grand plans without explaining to the volunteer membership the “Why” or listening to the members’ thoughts and concerns on whether the plan is feasible or desirable.
- The membership must donate/raise an average of $500 per member for a great cause that you have never heard of. There will be numerous levels of management to encourage you to meet this goal.
- Districts will increase the number of clubs within the district by the number of divisions in the district. (17 divisions = 17 new clubs) All clubs will all have net gains in members for the next 5 years. Again, we will add layers of volunteer-management to assure our goals are met.
I question whether either of these initiatives is attainable without the best efforts of almost every member. Last year, a third of the clubs didn’t agree with the first goal and are not participating. This puts a further burden on clubs who are trying to meet the goal. The second goal may be out of reach for some districts. Trying to meet an unattainable goal leads to frustration and possibly ill feelings, which could create the opposite response than the one hoped for.
The organization does not need any more bosses or management. But rather it needs more leaders who will work with the membership to make better outcomes a reality. Local leaders need to be inspired not managed. We need the facts! There needs a to be a reality check. Post the latest membership numbers, no matter how awful. There should be real discussions with members, online, about the State of the Organization. Or if we are $10+ million behind where we should be, in Eliminate pledges, how are we going to reach our goal? No great company would maintain the same goal in the same timeframe when it was slipping further away. Why would a great organization do that?
Has anyone noticed, the specifics of board meetings are no longer available for download? Perhaps because, they were being discussed online.
As a reminder, transparency is a trait of servant leaders because they trust those whom they lead. And a open discussion of ideas isn’t to be feared because it could just lead to better ideas.