Sunday, April 14, 2013

Sunday, April 07, 2013

A little bit mangled


 I am feeling mangled today.

Later this evening I will call a woman, who is running the nominating committee of the non-profit organization I'm working with ....to tell her I'm not going to permanently accept the 6 year path for my life they have chosen for me.

Last weekend, I was told, nonchalantly, they I was nominated to be Vice President next year of this organization which of course leads to a two year Presidency plus a two year post Presidency.  "We need your skills."  

Unfortunately, I volunteered to run the Transition Team of this organization to find an interim director for the next year and now because they feel I'm doing a good job....they've decided to offer me this 6 year path.  Trouble is....I don't want it.

I woke up this morning...knowing I would have to call this woman tonight and say...."no."  I realize I'm uncomfortable saying no...(but need to)....but I also realized....this has been extremely one-sided.....no one asked me if I was even interested in the position...if I had a life and other obligations. 

We need your skill set so hence you will devote the next 6 years of your life to us.  I knew right away....I would not take on this challenge....the only thing I've been trying to decide is to whether to agree to this position for one year in order to stablize the  organization and then move off.  I would consider a one year stabilization but absolutely no more.

I am not a selfish person....I devote my time to charity and good causes and I open my wallet  to causes I believe in....but I learned from my parents' sudden death almost 4 years ago...that there are things that are not replaceable.  

If I get hit by a bus tomorrow...since I'm an only child....so much family history is just blown away.  If I don't write it down ...no one will know.  Maybe my children are only mildly interested but perhaps their children (if they have any) will be interested to know their background or perhaps one of my cousins will have a burning desire to put the pieces together of our family.  So much would be lost....and then you weigh it against an organization that wants to do good for a group of people and you say...which do I choose?  

Well...I decided to choose a path that let's me begin my family history organization after October and also keep my finger in the pot of doing good in the community. In other words...I will help this organization for a year on it's executive committee (if they accept that) in a lower level executive job but I will not let the path consume my life.  

I also feel mangled because they put this information out to several people in the organization...and now I will also be seen as "refusing" to help the organization.  I've helped...alot...already but what a very strange way to do business.  How much better the organization would be as whole if it doesn't "eat up" people...but learns to strategize.  How much better would it have been to invite me for coffee find out my needs and see if they could piece together another plan....how about you for a year then we'll see if so and so might take it...and then we'll see if.....etc etc.

This isn't a good way to run an organization....you shouldn't make helpful people feel mangled. And I'm going to have to tell this very bossy....direct....woman...that no I'm not accepting their choice for my life...and perhaps a more collaborative approach to filling positions might be considered in the future. Strong-arming folks...ignoring their needs may get you some folks who volunteer out of guilt and pressure...but it doesn't gain you a positive following.