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LPV Announces New Program Name

Leadership Pioneer Valley Announces New Program Name: LEAP

SPRINGFIELD, MA-Leadership Pioneer Valley (LPV) announced it’s new name and logo for their signature nine-month leadership development program: LEAP. Although LEAP is not an acronym, it is designed to have members interpret it in their own way. The first LEAP class is challenged to leap to places they have never been before and test their limits. T

“Leaping is different than running, it is leaving the ground with both feet which is risky, and so is leadership,” remarked Lora Wondolowski, Executive Director of Leadership Pioneer Valley.

Each year Leadership Pioneer Valley welcomes new participants who are taking a leap of faith into the program. Nearly 250 other leapers have completed the program landing in amazing new places since graduation and the Class of 2019 will do the same. They are the first LEAP class, but not the first class to leap to higher skills.

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LPV Seeks Program Coordinator

Leadership Pioneer Valley works to identify, develop and connect diverse leaders to strengthen the region.  The core of the organization is a well-regarded 9-month regional leadership development program for existing and emerging leaders from non-profits, businesses and government.  The LEAP Program Coordinator reports to the Executive Director and is responsible for coordinating the LEAP Program and alumni programming.  Accepting applications until December 14th.  See link for full description: Program Coordinator Job Announcement

 

LPV Announces Hiring of Amy Britt as Leaders OnBoard Program Coordinator

Leadership Pioneer Valley Announces Hiring of Amy Britt as New Leaders OnBoard Program Coordinator

 

Springfield, MA– Leadership Pioneer Valley (LPV) is announcing that Amy Britt has joined LPV as the Leaders OnBoard Program Coordinator. In this role, Britt will be responsible for managing LPV’s board development program, Leaders OnBoard. The program aims to increase and strengthen the skills and capacities of boards of directors. This program is intended to recruit and train people who are new to board service as well as seasoned board members, with the goal of inspiring and strengthening the leadership provided to our robust network of nonprofit organizations in the Pioneer Valley.

 

Amy Britt comes to Leadership Pioneer Valley with a background in communications, marketing, and event management. She worked for Tapestry, a major regional public health agency, for over 10 years, most recently as the Director of Communications where she oversaw the communications and marketing for the organization, worked with the Development Department on fundraising campaigns and events, and supported the agency’s state and federal advocacy efforts. Amy graduated from Smith College with a BA in Biology, and was selected as an American Fellow in a U.S. State Department program focused on Women’s Health Leadership in Brazil in 2012. She is a 2014 Leadership Pioneer Valley graduate.

 

 

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Maternal Leadership

From May 1, 2018 African American Point of View

Maternal Leadership

“I am endlessly fascinated that playing football is considered a training ground for leadership, but raising children isn’t. Hey, it made me a better leader: you have to take a lot of people’s needs into account; you have to look down the road. Trying to negotiate getting a couple of kids to watch the same TV show requires serious diplomacy.”–  Dee Dee Myers

This month we will be celebrating the mothers in our lives.  Our parents are often the first people we learn leadership from—both good and bad.  Sometimes we don’t recognize the important leadership skills of mothers that are practiced in the workplace and community.

Patience

By nature, I am not a patient person.  I am often on to the next thing before finishing the last thing or even a sentence.  This can create unreasonable expectations of staff.  It can also mean missing others’ ideas and mistakes.  Being a parent has taught me patience.  It sometimes amazes me how long it can take my daughter to put on her socks or get to the point in a story.  If I try to rush her, she usually has to start all over.  By being patient, I am able to slow down and enjoy the moment.  Parenting is about allowing ourselves to be in the moment so that we don’t miss it.  My daughter probably won’t be singing exuberantly about the dog next year or next month.  The same is true in leadership.  Leaders who have the discipline of patience are able to see what’s in front of them and incorporate the ideas of others.

Blame

In our house, whenever something bad happens or someone gets hurt it is always the others’ fault.  It is so instinctual to blame others and not own our own outcomes.  Brené Brown is a social scientist who has found that “blame is simply the discharging of discomfort and pain.”  She believes that accountability is a vulnerable process that takes courage and time.  We are vulnerable when we admit fault or empathize with someone that we may have hurt.  Shifting away from blame takes time, listening and empathy.  I am working on taking blame out of my vocabulary at home and owning my mistakes to model that behavior for my girls.  I want to show them that mistakes aren’t always someone’s fault.  Similarly, as a leader I hope to be strong enough to be vulnerable enough to admit my mistakes or be empathetic enough to notice when I have wrongly blamed or hurt someone.  Admitting fault is never easy, especially when moms are trying to be Superwoman at home and work.

When you picture a leader, do you picture a mom? Why or why not?  We have been socialized to picture coaches, political leaders, and businessmen.  My mom taught me leadership lessons like showing up and getting involved if you care about something.  That is a value that I carry with me today.  My kids are making me a better leader every day by teaching me to be patient and own my mistakes.  This Mother’s Day let’s hear it for the maternal leaders in our lives.

LPV Now Accepting Applications: Early Bird Specials

MEDIA RELEASE                                       

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                              

 Contact: lwondolowski@leadershippv.org

413/737-3876 or c: 413/695-2038

Leadership Pioneer Valley Now Accepting Applications for Class of 2019

Early-bird discounts available

SPRINGFIELD, MA— Leadership Pioneer Valley (LPV) is now accepting applications for enrollment in the Class of 2019 for their regional leadership development program which begins in September.  LPV’s nine-month regional leadership development program engages the Pioneer Valley’s most promising emerging leaders through learning and exploration. Participants are trained in leadership skills by experts in a classroom setting. They also attend in-depth field experiences across the region where they meet with local leaders and explore the region’s economy and culture. Applied leadership experience is developed through work on projects for local nonprofits and government agencies. To date, nearly 250 individuals representing more than 90 companies, organizations, and municipalities have participated.

LPV is seeking applicants from non-profits, businesses and government that are eager to increase their leadership skills and take action to better the region. Applicants are considered in a competitive application process that prioritizes diversity by employment sector, geography, race, gender and sexual orientation. Emerging leaders, mid-career professionals with leadership potential, and those looking to better the Pioneer Valley should consider applying.   Those who apply by June 15th will be eligible for $100 off of their personal tuition and companies with 3 or more applicants by June 15th will receive 50% off one participant.

In its seven years running, the program has filled a critical need for a leadership program that builds a network of emerging leaders to address the challenges and opportunities of the region.  Fifty-three percent of alumni have a new leadership role at work, 64% have joined a new board of directors, and 99% made new meaningful connections.

The deadline for LPV Class of 2019 applications is July 2nd. Applications and further information can be found at www.leadershippv.org.

Formed in 2010, Leadership Pioneer Valley works to identify, develop, and connect diverse leaders to strengthen the region.

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Just Workplaces and Millennials

Just Workplaces and Millennials

from December 2017 An African American Point of View

All things Millennial continues to be a fascination in the US.  I know my board likes to talk about Millennials and what they think or want.  My Millennial niece hates reading about “what Millenials think or want.”  Managers are trying to figure out how to manage them and retain them.  Non-profits want to know how to get their attention, money, and volunteer time.    Now for the bait and switch, this article is not about Millennials, per se.  The focus is more on just workplaces and corporate social responsibility.  Here’s the Millennial tie-in—Millenials strongly value working for employers that align with their values, but they aren’t the only ones.

According to a recent survey by Just Capital, 79 percent of Americans said they would take a pay cut to work for a just company.  How an organization treats their workers ranked above all issues and stakeholders—like the environment, customers, products, or communities.  With a tightening labor market and continued stagnation of wages, it is telling that today’s workers prioritize working for a “good” business over increased wages.  People want companies to treat people like human beings.

Wait, we don’t have to pay people more, just treat them better?!  Maybe you’re already doing that but not telling anyone.  This is a great opportunity for organizations to tout their corporate social responsibility to attract and retain workers.  Costco was able to distinguish itself early for providing better pay and benefits while Walmart continues to garner negative opinions for its practices.  In a time with increased transparency and sharing through social media, it behooves organizations to be good corporate citizens.  It is much harder to hide unjust practices or poor work environments today.

There are many examples in this region of companies that are just to their employees and the community.  We are seeing more organizations that are aligning their corporate social responsibility efforts with employee values and concerns.  Millennials, in particular, want to bring their whole selves to work and not compartmentalize their community involvement from their workplace.  Yet many organizations have “their causes” that they give to or volunteer at.  These practices are becoming less-attractive to younger workers.  Leading-edge companies are allowing their workers to lead their volunteerism and giving efforts.  This is bad news for the United Way and they are seeing it around the country with flat fundraising when overall giving is increasing.  In alignment with employee-trends, MassMutual recently created an employee-driven philanthropy campaign.  They allow employees to designate the issue focus of their employee-giving campaign.

In an information-rich age where individuals can go-viral and everything is DIY, employees want to be seen as individuals.  Our technology and attitudes have broken down the separation between home and office.  Successful organizations must address their workplace practices, to create just and inclusive places that value their employees and transmit that value out into our communities.  Those that don’t will have trouble attracting younger workers and customers, and might be in the crosshairs of a viral, social media tirade.  Ultimately, we all win when our companies are good neighbors and treat their employees well.

Immigrants: Leaders Among Communities

By Rachel Sousa

As immigration laws begin to tighten and evolve in the United States, many Americans fail to see the positive side in welcoming legal immigrants and instead focus on the negatives emphasis on illegal immigrants in the media. This topic strikes a chord with me personally, given that my own father and his siblings immigrated from the Azores when they were children. I feel the deepest appreciation for him and the rest of his brothers and sisters–my family–for what they have accomplished in the last 40 years after being handed nothing but an American citizenship. This, in itself, is the foundation for success–but success does not come without phenomenal work ethic and the desire for self betterment. Written by Anand Giridharadas, the New York Times article “The Immigrant Advantage” sounds like an oxymoron, but I’ve seen this idea manifested in my closest family members. There is something radically empowering about a self-made person, and immigrants are awarded this opportunity. “The American Dream,” though often a forgotten term, is what makes this country a place people aspire to be, and a term that makes me proud to call myself a second-generation American citizen.

More importantly, the article takes a step back to look more closely at the anger and suspicion felt towards immigrants, and Giridharadas pins this on resentment felt by struggling middle-class citizens who feel trapped–a stark contrast with the expectations for success which immigrants arrive in the United States ready to seize. For immigrants, their heritage is something to motivate them forward, for middle-class Americans it becomes something which holds them back. Ultimately, as Giridharadas recognizes, it is the community which surrounds immigrants which allows for success. Pulling yourself up by your bootstraps only takes you so far–you’ll always need people pushing you from underneath. Without family, without community, struggling middle-class Americans have nothing to hold them up, and without it they fall further into their perceived “lot in life.”

In light of this article, the news of Uber’s new CEO Dara Khosrowshahi becomes that much more important. Khosrowshahi embodies the vision of successful immigrants which Giridharadas paints for his readers as he not only has become successful himself, but alongside his family members–also immigrants–making them “one of the most extensive family networks of anyone working in the technology industry” given that not one, not two, but six of his relatives are highly successful Silicon Valley entrepreneurs or executives. Given this, it’s no wonder Uber turned to Khosrowshahi during such a tumultuous time in their company’s history. Not only does Khosrowshahi seem up for the challenge, but he also has his community of peers and family to back him up. In other words: lean on family, reach out to your community. Without it, there is no hope of ever achieving the dogged mentality of immigrants, and our communities will continue to crumble beneath us.