State of Play : State of Play - Issue 1
18 | FEATURE | Wengel not only has a full-time job in Sydney’s CBD, but is also completing his MBA, as well as starting a family. “The time commitment has been difficult, but I overcome this by being very upfront and communicating to the board when I can be there to do something, and planning ahead so we set our board meetings well in advance or schedule a teleconference,” he says. Apart from the time commitment, introducing technology into a board whose members are not particularly tech-savvy can also be a challenge, says Kirwan. “The older members in our committee have always done things a certain way and this was a challenge for the younger generation, who are tech savvy and may solve an issue during the day over emails instead of waiting for the next meeting to discuss it,” she adds. “So while the younger people are learning about their roles and responsibilities, because not all of us have held roles of this calibre, the older heads are learning these tech tricks. The whole committee is learning and this creates a buzz within the board which is highly positive,” she says. REAPING WHAT IS SOWN Being a board member isn’t just about attending board meetings. It’s so much more than that and, while the role is voluntary, the takeaways from the experience are significant. Mandekic puts it simply: “The more you put into this role, the more you get out of it.” From being privy to the club’s accounts to budgeting, the experience has been fulfilling for Mandekic. The skills he’s developed along the way have helped him in his own profession in the field of finance. The exposure received from being a board member of a club is unique. Whether it’s picking up business or venue management skills, or learning how to manage people, the advantages are considerable. One other important benefit, says Kerwin, is the networking aspect of the role. “You meet people from a myriad of fields and from different age groups, all having different experiences and skills to share. You learn things that help you both professionally and personally,” she adds. Wengel understands the hesitation people may have when coming forward to contribute to a club, but strongly believes they should put their hand up regardless. “My piece of advice: there’s never going to be a perfect time and you just have to throw yourself headfirst and get involved. You will get all the support you need from the other members and your contributions will matter. “If you’re passionate about the club, you’ll make it work,” he adds. ■ THE MORE YOU PUT INTO THIS ROLE, THE MORE YOU GET OUT OF IT.
State of Play - Issue 2 Vic