Many of you will be busy polishing your talks and posters and getting ready for the Brisbane ASM as you read this - assuming it does get read at all of course. Those of you who are not going to the meeting should break off from this right now and either complete a proxy for the Governance special resolutions and pass it on to a colleague who will be there, or make sure the person charged with delivering it has packed it. It would also a good idea to make sure you have their mobile number so you can text a reminder to deliver it for you. Of course all who are going to the ASM will also be attending the AGM to vote in person.
With the change going on within the structure and operation of the Society, it behoves us all to take a few minutes to contemplate where we are heading. Allan Crockett will be presenting a historical session at the meeting and I am sure he will be pondering how his vision for a small group of technologists 30 years ago has panned out. I can only speak for myself when I marvel at where we have come in the twenty plus years I have been part of the Society. Visions with good foundations can take on a life of their own.
At the same time, it behoves us to consider where that vision of 30 years ago is taking us now as we embark on a major makeover of the Society. Growth and development demand fresh ideas, challenging of previously held ideas and energy, lots of energy. Just as children grow up and leave home (?), so us "old timers" need to let go and allow the next generation to take control of their destiny and guide the Society into the future. We may not always like what they decide, but how often, I wonder, did they not like what we decided. Our role should become one of mentoring those who assume the reigns of sharing our experience and corporate knowledge with them. If our egos get in the way and we do not step back, then we are saying that we have failed, that we lack the necessary confidence in what we have created.
If we are to recruit the next generation to lead us forward, then we have to show them that they have our support and that they can come to us for advice. Importantly they should not fear making mistakes. I suspect we have all struggled to get things right and have made mistakes along the way. I know I have and there is no doubt in my mind that I will continue to do so.
The upcoming AGM is where the next chapter in the Society's history will open. We need to ensure that the voice of the next generation is heard and continues to be heard. We need to ensure that new voices and ideas are welcomed into the deliberations of the Society management and its committees. We are already starting to see this with the new crop of regional representatives. This is great, but more of the next generation need to stand up and be counted.
Remember, ALL members have to make sure their voice is heard at this AGM, either directly or through a colleague.
'til next time