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Make a Difference Through the YPC Board

Young Professionals Connection Making a Difference

October 16, 2012

It’s hard to believe that autumn is in full swing in Greater Des Moines (DSM), and 2012 is coming quickly to a close. That also means that Young Professionals Connection (YPC) Board applications are being accepted and YPC will begin to strategize and plan for 2013. This is such a fun and exciting time, but also something that we take very seriously. I wanted to take a few minutes to share some of our goals and vision for next year, tell you how I first got involved, and share some insight into my leadership strategies and just recap how the actual nominations will work this year.

When I first got involved with YPC, I didn’t know anybody. I had been receiving the newsletters and had seen many of the YPC events around town, but I didn't know anyone else who was involved and was nervous about attending an event by myself since I was shy. For those of you that know me now, me being shy seems almost impossible!  Then one day I met the former Impact Downtown chair, Shawn Harrington, at a Downtown Chamber morning event. He personally encouraged me to come to events, get involved and eventually think about the upcoming board nominations. I want to publicly say “THANK YOU, SHAWN” for taking a leap of faith and encouraging me to try something new! I did and now I am here today, looking into my presidency for next year. Almost seems unbelievable.

I am sure my situation is not unique; if you are new to the area, or want to get involved, it may seem overwhelming. Where do I start? How do I get involved in a committee? I don’t know anybody! Those are all things that went through my head as well, but I’m so glad that I have taken that leap of faith. Through YPC, I have made some incredible friends, expanded my professional network, and had the chance to go on the Greater Des Moines Partnership’s annual chartered trip to Washington D.C. I could go on and on about the positive experience but, I’ll save that for another post.

2013 Goals

2013 is sure to hold some very exciting things for our city, and knowing YPC plays an integral part of that community means we have plenty of work ahead of us to continue our successes. This year, we’ve rolled out some incredible new things! The YPC Ambassadors program is a great example. Under Laura Michel’s leadership, the membership committee established the program, through which current YPC members attend all our events and look for new faces with the sole purpose of making sure you feel welcome, answer any questions about YPC, and introduce you to new members. We’ve also grown our business relations committee under Megan Ruble’s leadership; she has done a tremendous job of strengthening our business relationships and discounts and establishing unique events like the Bankers Trust “Into the Vault” event. Those are just a few examples of the tremendous leadership within YPC, and the type of creativity we need to continue for a strong 2013.

What happens during the board vote?

I want to assure everyone that the board vote is taken very seriously and we want this to be a positive experience for all. Once all the applications are received, the board will have some time to review the applications (So make sure yours stands out!), make notes, and come prepared to vote. This is all a very confidential process. Whenever we are faced with difficult voting decisions, such as 4-5 excellent candidates for the same board role, the decision is focused only on the positive, and those discussions are kept confidential.

If you are new to the area, new to YPC, or just apprehensive about how the voting actually works — don’t be! Download the application and start thinking about why YOU would be a great fit for our board next year, and how you can help take Des Moines to the next level of awesomeness!

With that, I’ll leave you with one of my favorite leadership quotes from J. Michael Straczynski: “Take care, don’t fight, and remember: if you do not choose to lead, you be forever led by others. Find what scares you and do it. And you can make a difference, if you choose to do so.”

Lindsay Alderman
YPC President-Elect