Well here we are then:
- A new Rotary Year,
- A new Rotary International President,
- A new Rotary International theme, and
- A brand new management team here at Torquay Rotary.
The new Rotary International theme for 2014 / 2015 is “LIGHT UP ROTARY”.
In choosing this theme RI President Gary C. K. Huang was inspired by the teachings of Confucius who said: "It is better to light a single candle, than to sit and curse the darkness."
"There are so many problems in the world, so many people who need help. Many people say, 'There's nothing I can do.' So they sit there doing nothing. Meanwhile everything stays dark," he said.
"The Rotary way is the Confucius way. The Rotary way is to light a candle. I light one, you light one, 1.2 million Rotarians light one. Together, we light up the world," he said.
After announcing his theme Huang urged Rotarians to Light Up Rotary in the coming year by hosting a Rotary Day in their community and including local Rotaract and Interact members in their service projects.
A wise person once said that:
“CHANGE IS A CONSTANT. THOSE WHO RESIST CHANGE RUN THE RISK OF LOSING RELEVANCE IN TODAY’S’ EVER CHANGING WORLD.”
Over the coming weeks there will be changes to the way we operate. Some will be subtle and others less so. Some of these changes will be evident at weekly meetings. However I will leave it up to the members of our new Management Team to tell you all about what is proposed.
In planning for this new Presidential year from an administrative perspective, I have settled on 4 main platforms for the operation of your management team
- Specific ACCOUNTABILITY for our actions and decisions;
- Improved TRANSPARENCY of management team activity for all Rotarians;
- Sound CORPORATE GOVERNANCE practices in accordance with our legal requirements as an incorporated body; and
- Maintenance of the SOCIAL FABRIC that binds us as a group of individuals together as Torquay Rotary.
Please remember that Torquay Rotary does not belong to the President, the management team or any individual Rotarian. It belongs to all of the members collectively. It is our collective responsibility to ensure that it continues to grow and prosper well into the future. In that light I will be outlining some new membership initiatives over the coming weeks.
For the time being the plan is for us to continue using the meeting format that has been in use for the past year with some variations. One such variation will be the reintroduction of retribution time. I am sure that our brand new sergeant can elaborate on what that might entail. J Now don’t expect it will be predictable, because it will happen when you least expect it. So make sure you bring along your coin collection each week just in case you get caught out. J
By now you may be thinking here we go again – more of the same. When do I get a say in all of this?
Well don’t despair. No management team can operate successfully in a vacuum. Later this calendar year I will be asking a “volunteer” to conduct a membership satisfaction survey on behalf of the management team. At that time you will all be asked to answer a series of questions. Your input will remain completely anonymous. All data gathered will be collated and analysed with the results referred to the management team for consideration. Watch this space in that regard.
Also I have been giving some consideration to the possibility of long term planning instead of the current arrangements which are essentially based around a single Rotary year. It is only a thought bubble at this stage but just maybe Torquay Rotary could benefit from having a District representative help us conduct a visioning session some time in the second half of the Rotary year. Such a process is designed to assist in the development of short, medium and long term goals. Once again watch this space. Of course if you have a particular interest in this topic then please let me know.
We all know that the Rotary International motto is Service Above Self. I believe that the legacy of a retiring Rotary Club President is best measured by the state of health of the Rotary Club they leave behind and nothing else. Projects come and go but if the social cohesiveness of the membership is found wanting then the future capacity of that group to continue assisting their community may suffer. We all need to work on this aspect together.
You may find that my management style may well be different from that of my predecessors. But please remember that I will always be available to discuss with you any issues that may arise, be that electronically or over coffee.
Long ago a manager of mine used to say that his door was always open but that if you’re going to bring a problem through that door make sure you also bring some possible solutions to discuss.
President 2014 / 2015