Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Building Team Spirit

Leadership is a privilege

September 1st 2007 goes down as a special day in IABC T&T's short history. That's the date facilitator Garth Thomas led IABC T&T through its first team building session. It wasn't immediately obvious why this workshop was necessary, after all most of us had already served together for the 2006-2007 year. We knew each other socially, through other networks and within the profession. Heck, we had a hell of a terrific year in the trenches (2006-2007) and nothing bonds people better than when they succeed together.

Still we were growing. A doubling of our membership meant we had to increase the workload of our board as well as its size. Plus, Eureka! We had new blood, with the addition of three new members, two of which included males; there was a general feeling that in moving forward our first steps had to be as one unit.

Maria Mc Millan suggested Garth and he didn't disappoint, with a combination of indoor experiential learning exercises and the wisdom "not of a sage on a stage but a guide on a side" Garth got deep into the emotional forces that comprise a team.

I was completing rejuvenated by the session, so was everyone else judging by the 100 % positive feedback at day's end.

Here are my key learning points from Saturday:

1) Leadership is a privilege

2) A team is an emotional force

3) Camaraderie is critical for success

4) Operate at optimum, together

5) Lean on each other

To all other volunteer leaders of the IABC T&T 2007-2008 board. You are a super terrific bunch and I am honoured to lead and serve alongside you.

Here are some pictures taken at our board retreat on Saturday 1st September 2007.

The team is all smiles in t-shirts bearing the IABC theme "Be

Board members engage in a fun team-building exercise.

Garth Thomas, the retreat's facilitator, leads the session with IABCTT board members.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

IABC Connections - Salvo Shoots People

The great thing about being part of the Southern Caribbean region is that we get to access resources and expertise, I knew this of course when questions were asked about whether we'd want to move to the Southern Chapter.

But having the chance to meet Chris and Suzanne Salvo, global trotters and award winning photographers, well, that was the whip cream on top the hot chocolate. A total delight.

Suzanne is a highly rated speaker at IABC International and District Conferences. She has won the Chairman's award this year and she is a past president of IABC/Houston, which named her Volunteer of the Year in 2002.

Both she and her husband/partner Chris are co-owners of Salvo Photography, an international award-winning studio based in Houston, Texas that specialises in corporate and industrial location photography. That's what their web site states but it is ability to capture inner spirits of people that fascinates me.

In San Diego, when I met them for the first time at the Leadership Institute, Suzanne positioned me in this zany, full of life shot that totally captured my spirit. In Trinidad, last July, at the Kapok Hotel, some of our local board members also had the opportunity to get their pictures taken. Take a look. Chris and Suzanne captures Maria's quiet essence, Giselle's natural beauty and Wendy's glamour.

"Salvo shoots people," that's on their web site also, and that's phrase I find most appropriate.

This Salvo shot captures Wendy's glamour perfectly.

Even her own hands can't hide Giselle's natural beauty.

Maria's natural essence shines through.

The team is all smiles as they pose with Suzanne Salvo.