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Five Pathways for Leadership Development at the Chapter Level

One - Assist with planning and hosting your chapter’s annual meeting

a. Your Governor would like to establish a planning committee that represents a wide array of geographic, ethnic, gender, subspecialty, training, and practice differences. Participation by program directors, chiefs of medicine, faculty members and practitioners is important for successful meeting planning. Offer to help your Governor fill in any gaps in the committee.

b. If you have attended your chapter meeting several times, offer to take an active role as faculty, moderator, panelist, or workshop organizer.

c. If the chapter meeting is being held in your city, offer to serve as greeter at the registration desk. You can also give “insider tips” on where to eat and what to see in the area.

d. Bring colleagues, students, or residents to the chapter meeting and introduce them to other members.

e. Work with others selected by your Governor to set goals for the meeting, and establish strategies to meet the goals.

f. Offer to help with planning and implementing logistical aspects of the chapter meeting, such as venue selection, meeting promotion, extending invitations, communicating with meeting site management team, planning social events, seeking industry support, or hosting speakers.

g. Identify newcomers or “loners” at the meeting and make them feel welcome.

h. Talk with non-member physician attendees regarding the benefits of membership in the College.

Two - Actively participate on the chapter council

a. Your Governor would like the chapter council to represent a wide array of geographic, ethnic, gender, subspecialty, training, and practice differences. Different levels of membership (Resident/Fellow Members, students, early career physicians, etc.) should also be represented. Offer to represent one of these groups.

b. If your council is elected by the members, find out when the next election will be held and volunteer to have your name placed on the ballot, or offer to serve on the nominations committee.

c. When serving on the council, ask your Governor for specific responsibilities with deliverables and deadlines.

d. Provide brief progress reports to the Governor and others on the council.

e. Seek opportunities to engage the membership in council activities, as appropriate, by forming task-oriented teams or work-groups.

f. Offer to write articles for the chapter newsletter or website, updating members on council activity.

g. Clear your schedule to attend regular meetings of your council and come prepared to collaborate with others on strategies for moving the chapter’s agenda forward.

Three - Join the Chapter Leader Network

a. Each chapter employs a network of leaders to manage chapter committees such as Health and Public Policy, Chapter Meeting Program Planning, Resident/Fellow Members and Students, and Early Career Physicians. Let your Governor know if you would like to serve on one of these.

b. Attend the Chapter Leader Networking Session, the State Health Policy Networking Session, or leadership development courses held at the College’s Internal Medicine meeting every year.

c. Work with your Governor to clearly define expectations and deliverables, and set deadlines for your committee.

d. Get other members engaged in completing committee work. Consider creating workgroups or teams to move the chapter committee agenda forward.

e. Look for opportunities to gain public speaking experience in committee work.

f. Offer to arrange quarterly or bi-annual conference calls with other chapter leaders to discuss specific activities and collaborate on strategies to meet chapter goals.

g. Read the Governor’s newsletters, emails, and chapter website postings on a routine basis. Respond to inquiries and solicitations whenever you see an opportunity to help out.

h. If you are not a Fellow of the College, begin the process for advancement.

Four - Share your national interest and expertise with the local chapter

If you have:

Served on a national committee or council,
received a national award,
attended national leadership development courses or networking sessions,
held leadership positions in other national IM organizations, task forces, or work groups, or
attended Leadership Day on Capitol Hill:

a. Contact your local Governor and ask how you can use your national experience to benefit members at the local level.

b. Offer to serve as faculty for your chapter meeting, or to participate on the chapter meeting planning committee.

c. Ask the Governor if it would be helpful for you to sit on the chapter council or attend some of its meetings to discuss local aspects of the issues with which you have national experience.

d. Offer to become part of a chapter committee with interests similar to those in which you are active at the national level.

e. Offer to write an article in the chapter newsletter, or post information on the chapter website to help other members gain from your national experience.

f. Offer to help mobilize the local members to initiate chapter activity that would support the national effort in which you were/are engaged.

Five - Help your Governor implement social inclusion strategies to identify and cultivate potential leaders in diverse groups

a. Offer to assist your Governor in reviewing your chapter profile to assess the gender, ethnic, and age distribution of the chapter membership.

b. Compare your chapter demographics to the demographics of your current committees and councils to decide if the diversity of your membership is reflected in your leadership.

c. Identify areas where a specific group of members is not adequately represented in your chapter leadership.

d. If you belong to a group of members you feel may not be represented in chapter leadership, offer to serve on the chapter council or a chapter committee that could benefit from your viewpoint and experience.

e. Assist the Governor in reviewing your Chapter Leader Network, previous chapter meeting faculty lists, chapter meeting registration lists to see if some members from the diverse group you want to focus on have participated in any of these venues.

f. Offer to work with the Governor to contact these active members to determine what their local interests are.

g. Work with the Governor to identify ways to engage diverse members in already established chapter committee or council activities


h. Offer to write an article for the Governor’s newsletter or post something on the chapter website articulating the special background, skills, interests, or needs of a diverse group in your area.

i. Engage in a dialog with the Governor about the needs of a specific group of your membership, i.e., Asian Americans, African Americans, women in practice, early career physicians, etc., and collaborate on ways in which the chapter might meet some of these needs.

j. If you belong to a diverse group, talk to your Governor about identifying a mentor to help you understand or engage in the local chapter or medical community.

k. Offer to help plan a special event for a targeted diverse group at the next chapter meeting.

l. Participate in one of the College’s national leadership development sessions. Encourage others in diverse groups to do the same.

m. Discuss with your Governor the possibility of establishing a new standing committee to address the needs of a diverse group in the chapter.

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