Dear ELGL members,
A number of years ago, city of Beaverton chief administrative officer Randy Ealy gave a talk to a group of ELGL members. He talked about his career and the highlights of his work. He described driving home from a budget hearing, where his proposed budget was adopted, and rolling down the windows, listening to Journey, and pumping his fists in happiness and excitement. It was a truly nerdy moment, but one that all of us in the room completely understood.
I had that same feeling this week as I finished ELGL’s first-ever proposed budget. We’ve also put into place a Finance Committee, and a Board of Directors. These groups will approve and adopt a budget.
For the last few years, we’ve always operated on a cash basis, raising funds and then spending as needed. To have a financial plan for the year in place, including enough funding to pay the executive director position and also a more aggressive approach to raising resources, will ensure that ELGL is a sustainable organization that will continue into the future.
Finalizing and posting our first budget was a fist pumping moment, and I’m excited to see what the next year holds.
Have a great week!
What I’m reading:
Recruiters Explain What the Worst LinkedIn Profiles Have in Common, Fast Company – two reasons I like this article. First, it dovetails nicely with the latest webinar we’ve scheduled – “Rock Your LinkedIn Profile.” We have Emma Nicolle from LinkedIn to share the latest tips and tricks about maximizing the potential of your online resume. Second, item #5, “You Haven’t Written Anything” is a huge reason that ELGL places such an emphasis on blogging for us and using the blogs to showcase your writing abilities. As a reminder, we’re currently looking for guest bloggers for our series on the work of clerks and recorders.
What I’m listening to:
- The ELGL Summer Playlist! We’re crowdsoursing the best songs for Summer 2017 with this Spotify list. Don’t forget to add your favorite songs to it.
What I’m watching:
- Girlboss on Netflix. At first, I found Sophia annoying but she grew on me and the series ended on a strong female empowerment note. Plus, as readers of these updates have probably discerned, I love reading and watching stories about how people take their passion and build it into something sustainable.
We have a busy summer of technology webinars coming up – mark your calendars and tune in for some great opportunities to learn about new tools that your local government could implement to increase efficiency. Special thanks to ELGL member Mike Ekey for managing this program for ELGL.
Sharing GIS Services: AWC’s GIS Consortium Featuring FLO Analytics
Wednesday, June 14 at 10:00 a.m. PDT
Rock Your LinkedIn Profile
Tuesday, July 18 at 9:00 a.m. PDT
Coming up later this summer:
Crowd Funding Public Projects with Patronicity
Online Economic Development and Business Recruitment with Townfolio.co
This week, I shared the fiscal year 2018 proposed budget with the ELGL Finance Committee. It’s our first “real” budget and I’m excited that we’re on a path to long term financial sustainability.
Notable items: I built in a salary for myself (!) and a contingency fund, as well as full funding for two conferences (#ELGL18 in May 2018, and #ELGLPopUps in September 2017) and participation and travel costs for ELGL to visit with our members across the country at local government conferences and events. We will continue to rely on our awesome leadership network to develop and manage programs and events.
We are keeping dues at the low $0/students, $25/individuals, and $250/All-In rates. When putting the budget together, you can see how/why some professional organizations jack up membership dues to cover costs – it’s a pretty passive way to raise resources.
But that’s not the ELGL way – and so we’ll also be aggressively fine tuning and enhancing the ways we raise money as part of sponsorship opportunities, and seeking grants and gifts (our first ever effort to pursue this funding option) to cover our costs.
The Finance Committee will review and approve the budget later this month, and then the Board of Directors will adopt the budget at our retreat on July 7, 2018. I welcome all comments and suggestions about this first budget document. It’s pretty basic at this point, but I anticipate that it will be enhanced and upgraded by FY 2019.
A few months ago, Luke Fretwell, the CEO of ProudCity offered his assistance at enhancing ELGL’s digital services. I’ve been through several web designs and processes, and learned about many more at local government conferences. I assumed that our work with ProudCity would follow the processes I’ve participated in or read about in the past.
Not only was I completely wrong, but each week of our Digital Working Group process, I’m more and more amazed at how perfectly ProudCity has aligned digital services with operational processes. Luke and Kevin Herman are coaching ELGL through an upgrade that won’t just change the look and feel of ELGL.org and our digital tools, they’re making us a more efficient organization. Each week, they charge our group with things like developing our brand, figuring out working agreements for the management team, and changing the structure of how we manage, plan, and execute ELGL affairs.
To be honest – it’s a degree of involvement that I didn’t expect but I’m absolutely in awe of and grateful for. Every organization should have the experience to weave together its digital services with its business and operations plan. The other incredible thing is the volume of work that our team is accomplishing. We’re cranking through work assignments at a pace that you wouldn’t expect from a volunteer team, but it’s due to the inspiration and direction of Luke and Kevin.
What does this mean for ELGL members? Already, many of you have participated in the surveys and questions that we’ve posed on things like brand. And the team of volunteers who write and organize for us have seen us shift project management from Slack to Trello, at the direction of ProudCity. In the coming weeks, we’ll continue to do things like fine tune our membership list and email list, and begin work on bigger topics about what membership means, and the benefits of membership.
Along these lines, I’ll end this update with a question for you:
What does ELGL membership mean to you? What are the benefits of being an ELGL member?
I look forward to hearing from you!