Are you new to the chamber industry and your job as a new chamber Executive Director (ED)?
If so, you’re going to be pleasantly surprised at how congenial and supportive chamber pros are! Part of that is because everyone is in the trenches together and the other part is that they’re not competing with each other. While there can be a lot of politics in running a chamber and being a new chamber executive director, chamber pros are friendly and helpful.
Keep reading to get their valuable advice and suggestions.
Advice for a New Chamber Executive Director from People Who Know
- Schedule time for yourself. ~Linda Christianson
- Don’t take anything personally. Everyone else knows a “better” way to do every aspect of your job and they will judge accordingly. Shower your volunteers with praise (maybe donuts too). Keep track of your milestones and accomplishments- the small and the large- and look at that list often. ~Karen Riley
- People all over the community look up to this organization and it is with great responsibility that you are in this position. With that being said have fun with it too. ~Douglas Wallace
- Be gracious, respectful, kind, compassionate … and empowered! ~Denise Ackley
- Rely on your peers for advice, commiseration, and the occasional stiff drink. ~Mary Ann Miller <There were several mentions of stiff drinks from a variety of chamber pros. Theme?>
- Absorb as much information for the first year before putting in your “two cents.” There can be so much back history that you won’t know until you hear ALL sides of everything. Be helpful, learn from others and make time for you and family. ~Yvette Keast
- The best thing you can do for your career, your chamber, and your community is to attend the US Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Institute for Organization Management! ~Blain Andera
- Always keep a board member between you and any challenging situation. ~Laurel Bumb
- Have a face to face meeting with the top 100 members in the first 100 days. ~Laurette Leagon
And these gems were only the beginning of the advice for a new chamber executive director (ED). Want to hear more or add your own? Join the conversation.