By Deanna Tharpe, DSAIA Executive Director
Connecting leaders…we do it each year at the annual conference. I try to do it on a weekly basis when our members need to talk personally with another group leader on a specific subject. However, it’s hit or miss and it’s the misses that constantly make me lose sleep. “I wish that I had an hour to just talk with others in my position.” If you have said those words, I know that you are going to love DSAIA’s new Leaders Circles. What are Leaders Circles? Leaders Circles are groups of five Down syndrome group leaders from similar-sized organizations and in similar positions who meet monthly to address common challenges, exchange ideas and share solutions. Circles will meet in monthly joint work sessions from October through April.
Leaders Circles can help you:
- Network with colleagues who face similar challenges and opportunities
- Experiment with new ideas before “taking them public”
- Achieve personal goals
- Keep up with developments in your field
- Get support and coaching from peers
- Take action and learn
With the help of Jane Page-Steiner of JPS Nonprofit Strategies, DSAIA’s pilot project will include two Leaders Circles focusing on Board Presidents and Executive Directors. Future plans are to extend circles to other board/staff positions once the pilot programs are completed. The Circles are more than just a chat session…a facilitator works with each group and meetings are focused and productive as well as confidential.
Fees for the program are $250, but DSAIA members are able to take advantage of this valuable tool at no charge. There is an application process for interested organizations, allowing DSAIA to ensure the greatest benefit to each participant. Applications will be accepted through August 31, 2012. DSAIA will assess and contact approved applicants to attend the first meeting/orientation in late September. Regular Peer Circle Meetings will begin in October. Interested? Download the application today by clicking here.