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Leadership Building, Lifelong Friendships

by Sherri Souza, PMN


Each year as summer approaches, preparations for Women's Council's Leadership Academy are in full swing. In August, incoming Women's Council leaders will travel to Chicago to prepare for the year ahead, with training on chapter management topics and much, much more.

I am reminded of the special memories I have of serving my local chapter. My year as president-elect was a period that solidified my commitment in Women's Council. That May, I met other presidents-elect at my first national meeting in Washington, D.C., and we made plans to arrive in Chicago early to see the sights before attending Academy.

Excited for our first trip to Chicago and eager to make the most of it, we spent three days together sightseeing, dining and getting to know our peers in Women's Council. By the time the Academy started, we were inseparable. We shared our industry insights and future plans, as well as our challenges and successes in association leadership. I can truly say it was the start of some friendships that would last for many years to come.

The Academy is such a crucial building block in leadership. I have also heard it described as a "fire hose" of information for incoming chapter presidents. Attendance at Academy provides these leaders with the information to manage their chapters, guide other leaders, provide grassroots member benefits and network with other leaders – all the vital information designed to help them succeed in their year of chapter leadership.

Like any educational opportunity, attendees should come prepared. There will be four modules that all will attend. If you will be attending this year's event, here are some tips on what to expect from your Academy experience:

1. Prepare your mind for an onslaught of information that will enable you to organize your chapter financials, bylaws, standing rules and meeting protocol.

2. Open your mind to the possibility of developing programs that will provide members with valuable, revenue-generating, business-building information.

3. Get ready for new communication resources and technology tools through the national website.

4. Learn how to articulate Women's Council's brand for success in recruitment and retention of members.

Not only will local chapter presidents-elect attend this year's Academy, but also incoming state chapter presidents and regional vice presidents.

Over the years, Women's Council's Leadership Academy has assisted thousands of volunteers with finding their way on to their leadership path. It has prepared many for a complex job and has answered questions and given direction and a plan to incoming leaders. Be sure to come to Academy with an open mind, a kind heart and a zest for learning. We strive to give you everything you need to be successful, because we want you to be able to value your leadership as much as we value you as a leader committed to the success of Women's Council.

When I see my Women's Council "sisters," with whom I traveled my leadership journey, I have a fondness in my heart and an unending connection of friendship with these women. There was a reason we met and a reason we journeyed together. Enjoy your opportunity and make the most out of it!


Souza_thumbnailRecording Secretary
Sherri Souza, CRS, GRI, PMN 
Independent Women Brokers
Livermore, CA

Click here to learn more about Leadership Academy.




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