There are several folks who claim credit for it, but one of the things I have been heard to say from time to time that I didn’t make up is that “90% of life is just showing up.” (Okay, perhaps it is only 89%. Whatever!)
As we begin the months of the well respected summer doldrums, I would ask all of you who are around when meetings are taking place of our various chapters and special interest groups to make a special effort to show up, especially if you RSVP for a meeting.
I have to tell you that setting up a meeting requires a lot of hours on behalf of our many hard working chapter and SIG chairs, and it can be discouraging to think you are going to have a crowd and end up having a speaker talking to an empty room. All this and you don’t get paid for it either!
Now I know that I will never be able to beat anyone into attending a meeting they don’t feel will bring them value. But, I can’t think of a better thing to do than getting out and meeting your fellow members of The FENG. Sure, none of them are movie stars, and some of them can quite honestly be rather boring when they are doing their 90-second announcements, but I have found that this is part of their charm.
As a group, we are by and large cut from the same cloth. (A frightening thought!) I have been holding meetings since January of 1997, and I try very hard never to miss. I’m sure I could find someone to step in from time to time, but I actually enjoy meeting our many members, some of whom are attending their first meeting. It can be a little scary going to your first meeting, and I am delighted to be there to help them through it. My guess is that our many chapter and SIG chairs feel the same way.
We devote a lot of resources to making meetings better attended. We have for many years been emailing meeting notices to chapter and SIG members to remind them of these important events. Several years ago we completed a major website updating (at no small expense) to ensure that if you miss the meeting notice in the newsletter, you can still check somewhere without having to call anyone. (Are you empowered, or what?)
So, even if “showing up” is only 80% or even only 75% of life, (a little sensitivity analysis for all of us analytical types), it still pays.
See you at the next meeting. I’ll be the one wearing the red rose in my lapel. (I also have a name badge for the visually impaired.)