November 2018 President’s Message by Sabrina Kidwai | PRSA-NCC
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November 2018 President’s Message by Sabrina Kidwai

November 11, 2018

Dear PRSA-NCC members:

November is one of my favorite months. Football season is in high gear, there's Thanksgiving, and it’s my birthday. There are lots of things to celebrate this month! We have so much to be thankful for in life. When I look back at the past 16 months of my presidency, PRSA-NCC has had many successes this year. We hosted our first PR Day for students in April at GW University. We created a speaker RFP, so members can submit ideas for speakers and programming for the chapter.  

In October, we hosted our 50th Thoth Awards Gala, held elections for the 2019 board, and conducted a membership survey. It’s been a busy year, and we have more great programming coming up. On November 7, we held our last official board meeting for the year. It was bittersweet for many reasons. Sherri Core, our long-time executive director, is retiring. We will definitely miss her and all that she has done for the chapter.

As a board, we had started to look at the results of the membership survey. Thank you to everyone who took time and gave us valuable feedback. Your insights will be instrumental in helping us continue to improve as a chapter. We will share a copy of the Executive Summary to all members early part of next year.  

As I listened to the results, a few things resonated with me. First, networking and programming are some of the key reasons why people join PRSA-NCC. Next, members indicated that our professional development events are done well, but they also provided insights on how we can improve. One area they wished for is more low-cost networking opportunities.  

We discussed how people have different definitions about networking depending on where you are in your career. That’s very true, but it’s critical for us to remember that building networks takes time. Throughout my career, I’ve seen people reach out to me and others only when they want a new job. That’s not the best way to network and sustain a professional relationship.

The key for all of us to remember is not only to build a network, but it’s critical to nurture and maintain these relationships over time. For example, I recently started a new job at the end of October. My PRSA-NCC and ASAE colleagues have been so instrumental in my transition. They gave me great advice and samples of resources that I needed. If I didn’t maintain those relationships over the years, I may not have received that help.  

For 2019, I want to challenge members to develop a plan on how you create a new network, but also how will you maintain it throughout the year. Let’s meet for lunch on Friday, November 30 to discuss how the chapter can better provide networking events for its members. We’ll brainstorm ideas and network, too! If you want to participate, email me and we’ll figure out a time and location.

Have a great Thanksgiving!

Sabrina Kidwai
President, PRSA-NCC