August 30, 2022 Message to the Membership

Posted on August 30, 2022 in

August 30, 2022 Message to the Membership

Thanks to those of you who took the time to respond to our member survey that went out earlier this summer. We had terrific uptake (in fact, I might even describe it as a shocking uptake) and that’s a pretty good thing when you’re wanting to use the results as part of our strategic planning process.  

Although the strategic planning is still underway, it is nearing completion and – are you hanging onto your hats? – you will be given the opportunity to read that plan as soon as it is available. I know it’s likely hard to concentrate on your day-to-day activities with that kind of suspense and anticipation hanging over you, but I trust that you will be able to somehow manage in the interim. 

And to be clear, I’m being facetious as this document will be a wonderful tool for the organization, particularly the Board and the staff, as we navigate our way through this (hopefully) post-pandemic world. But for the rest of you, at least most of the rest of you, I’m assuming this document will make for some good nighttime reading, particularly for you insomniacs out there. 

Until the plan becomes public, however, I thought you might find it as interesting as I did to hear of some of the survey’s responses. For the most part, those that took the time to fill out the survey are generally pleased with the direction of the organization. (OK, maybe that’s not overly earth-shattering.)  

Having said that, there is certainly room for improvement – that’s the whole purpose of a strat plan after all, isn’t it? But by and large (which is a strange phrase isn’t it? It could actually be by enlarge, but I digress) members are relatively pleased with the work of your NSBA. 

Where there is a pretty significant divisive bone of contention, however, is on this whole business of a name change. Should we or shouldn’t we? Sorry Hamlet, but that is the question (of the day). 

As it turns out, we have pretty much a split down the middle on this one. OK, 56 per cent to 44 per cent is not exactly right down the middle, but it’s pretty freaking close on a matter as significant as this one. And would it really matter which side was the 56 per cent and which sentiment made up the 44 per cent? I’m not so sure.  

But just for you curious cats out there, 56 per cent are not in favour of a name change. Even though I may be telling tales out of school (because we’ve yet to tackle this one at the Board/strat planning level) I would be surprised if we came out of this with a radically different name. Sorry to those of you espousing for something along the lines of global domination. I don’t think it’s realistic – this time around anyway. 

But what’s key to this whole process is that we asked you, and you responded. Even more critical is that we heard you, and are listening to what you said. Even if we don’t ultimately agree with what you in particular had to say, don’t kid yourself, we talked about it, debated it and made sure that we were on the path of the wishes of the majority of our membership. 

That, I think is in itself the value of the strategic planning process. Connecting with our members, asking them the important questions, and providing the opportunity to be heard. Hats off to our Member Services Coordinator, Tracy Bitternose, who took it as a mission in life to ensure she talked to as many of you as she could in a few short weeks.  

Indeed while the rest of you were at the lake and enjoying the fruits of your labour, Tracy was on the phone and email machine connecting with as many of you as possible. And thanks to her, we had the largest response rate to a survey that we’ve had – by far – in my time in this role. For those keeping track, the staff wager went to Daniel Afe, who picked the highest number of us all. 

So stay tuned, there will be more exciting news coming. I just can’t guarantee how revolutionary it will be. We may still be in elbows-up competition with the National School Boards Association, Nova Scotia Badminton Association, or my personal favourite, the National Snaffle Bit Association over dominance of the NSBA acronym. But we shall see. 

Until next time, be safe, be smart, be considerate, be well, but most of all, be kind. 

Keith Moen 

Executive Director 


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