Clarifying Our Values at Eastside Audubon
At its winter retreat the Eastside Audubon Board of Directors worked to clarify the values that it would follow in its work and promote among chapter members.
By Andy McCormick, Eastside Audubon President
The discussion grew out of a six-month effort to revise the Eastside Audubon bylaws and update the Leadership Guide for board members. These chapter documents now allow for more flexibility in how we develop programs to enjoy birds, conserve birds and their habitat, and educate the public about birds.
Eastside Audubon Values
The board is now focused on the following five values:
- Joy We are doing the work of strengthening the chapter and its programs because we love birds and enjoy watching them. We want to share this joy with as many people as we can.
- Respectful Communication Differences of opinion often occur between people who are passionate about their work, as many Audubon people are. We are working to be sure that communication on the board and among chapter volunteers is respectful of others’ points of view.
- Unity and Consistency in Message Our chapter is small by comparison to some of the large urban chapters in the country that have wide-ranging agendas. We need to have a clear, unified, and consistent message about what we want to accomplish for birds and their habitat and incorporate that message into all of our programs.
- Receptiveness Listening is often more important than speaking. We want to be sure that members will be heard by the leadership. We ask all board members, committee chairs, and others in leadership positions to be receptive to the ideas of members who are on their committees, other committees, or at large.
- Self-discipline The board understands that many members are willing to take initiative to support efforts to protect birds. They may also seek formal support from the chapter. The board welcomes these initiatives. We also recognize that our leadership and volunteer resources are finite, and when deciding to commit resources to any proposal, the board will be realistic and will give priority to those ideas that best align with our message to the community.
Board members and committee chairs are open to your thoughts about these values and the direction of the chapter. Your input is needed to help formulate the message that is best for Eastside Audubon. Please contact any board member with your thoughts.