The smooth transition of outgoing and incoming board members and officers is of vital importance and can determine your PTA’s leadership success for years to come. The transition process is the responsibility of both incoming and outgoing officers and board members. It gives closure to those leaving their positions and allows those coming in to be properly prepared. A good process of transition provides an opportunity for outgoing members to evaluate their work and efforts while giving suggestions to new board members on what they wish they had done differently.
KEYS FOR A SMOOTH TRANSITION
Encourage new officers to attend PTA training including the California State PTA Annual Convention. Local district or regional PTAs often hold job-specific workshops and leadership seminars tailored to unit needs. Participating in training connects new leaders to a network of experienced leaders as mentors to call upon during the term.
- Finish the term
- Complete all responsibilities (including updating your procedure book).
- Meet with current board to evaluate the term.
- Send new board contact information to your council or district.
- Meet with successor; introduce successor to key individuals.
- Turn over all PTA materials and resources that relate to position.
- Incoming and outgoing boards meet together.
ACTIVITIES OF THE BOARD-ELECT
An orientation and planning meeting for a new executive board helps a PTA jump start the year right by offering an opportunity to share ideas, review PTA resources and create a working calendar. Agreeing on ground rules for board meetings, priorities in working styles and preferences for types and timeliness of communication will set the stage for a productive PTA team effort.To ensure a successful term of office, certain responsibilities begin as soon as officers are elected.
The board-elect may:
- Register the officers for convention.
- Determine resources and materials needed, and order them.
- Distribute copies of bylaws and job descriptions, if they were not included in procedure books.
- Fill vacancies and ratify appointments.
- Brainstorm to set goals and prepare a master calendar.
- Meet with site administrator.
- Assure that year-end financial report and year-end audit take place so budget committee can begin to plan.
Outgoing officers should give support and information when requested but remember that there is more than one way to do every job. Encourage those who follow to develop their own leadership style. The best reputation a PTA leader can have is to be known as a good mentor who taught their successor well and provided the preparation needed for continued success of the association.
BE SURE TO HOLD ELECTIONS BEFORE THE YEAR ENDS
Bylaws indicate when elections are held; but, WHY is it important to elect new officers before the current school year ends and not when the new school year starts?