What made you take on this role?
The opportunity to make a difference in JCI United Kingdom. When I joined JCI I did not expect to be elected Deputy National President less than 3 years later. When I first joined I remember looking up to Sofie and Marco as semi-gods as Local Presidents, and the National President I didn’t dare talk to at all! I don’t think the opportunity to take on the leadership of a national organisation comes everyday, and when opportunity knocks, I answer!
What are your plans for JCI UK in 2011 and 2012
In 2011 my plans are to support National President Allison Cowell and also to plan and prepare for 2012. I want to involve the current and future local presidents and active members as much as I can in this planning so that everyone can contribute and feel they have a stake and ownership in how our organisation is developing.
JCI is a leadership development organisation and we need to not only give leadership development opportunities to our members but also provide active leadership support. As National board our role is to support the local chambers. JCI is first and foremost local. If we don’t make a difference in our local communities, if we don’t contribute, if no-one were to miss us if we went away, then JCI is loosing its relevance and that is what I want to work on as National President in 2012. Support our local presidents make a difference in their local communities and be the best leaders they can be.
Has JCI presented any unusual/interesting opportunities?
Unusual and interesting? For sure! Let me think which ones are appropriate for general consumption…
Is there anything you have done as a JCI member that you never would have thought possible before you joined?
I’m an optimist, so I wouldn’t say that anything before seemed impossible. However there are lots of things I’ve done through JCI that I didn’t expect to do. I didn’t expect to be the National President or Local President of JCI London, or even get as active as I have become, neither did I expect to speak in the House of Lords, compete in the World Public Speaking Championship, see Ban Ki-Moon, build a float in a Swedish forest, become a trainer…and the list goes on… (and I think that should answer the question before too…)
What do you enjoy most about being a JCI member?
The people. I love that everyone in JCI are engaged in the world around them. We say that our motto is “Be Better” and that is so true about JCI members. We’re always looking at how we can make something be better, how we can be better, how we can make the world around us better for us and everyone else. With JCI members around there’s always a good conversation lurking somewhere.
Anything you want to say to end with?
Yes! If you are interested in the strategic development of our organisation, join Future Forum this year! We’ll look at membership trends and how we can make the membership experience better.
Categorised in: Charity
This post was written by Sarah Beckwith