Membership Moment #90 - What Happened Last Year?

Dear League leaders,

Many of you are in the middle of planning your annual meeting. I know we are at LWVUS! At Convention, we'll tell you about what has happened in the last two years and what  the goals are for the next two years. It's interesting to me that at the annual meeting we always are interested in our biggest success.  

Everything your League did this year had one of five things occur at the end: 

1. Great outcome - went way better than planned!
2. Good outcome - went as planned.
3. No outcome - still pending, or dropped.
4. Bad outcome - went wrong, or lost it.
5. Real bad outcome - went way wrong, and died.

And all of those five outcomes carried with them lessons. The combined lessons you've learned up to this point  can be thought of as "your League experience."  Some of that knowledge is very useful. Goals achieved, goals unmet, relationships that succeeded, relationships that failed, all of your emotional encounters, and all of your finances. To each one of those elements big and small, there is tied a lesson that you hold on to for next time. And those lessons will trigger a response in your mind the next time you encounter the same, or a similar, situation. It will trigger a response like: do this, or don't do this, or have other people help me do this. And there's also the desire factor: we want to do this, or we don't want to do this. 

Achievement and non-achievement are just a small part of the learning process. It's not simply the lesson that you learned. Rather, it is the lesson learned combined with your response to that lesson.

What outcome were you expecting?
What outcome did you get?
What did you learn as a result of that?
What did you do about it?
What are you going to do about it next time?

If you achieved something, that is called an event. When you learn a lesson from that achievement, that's called knowledge. And it's knowledge that will carry your League forward. It's okay to celebrate achievement and revel in victory, but that's just a reflection of where you are at this moment. The wisdom you gained and the associated lessons learned are what will get you to tomorrow.