Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Gate Keeper

How many times have you had difficulties scheduling a meeting or getting a reply from someone in a position of power? This is an occurrence that happens in all professional fields. Often times people are so concerned with the person or task in question, they forget about the Gate Keeper:

[geyt-kee-per] noun
1. A person in charge of a gate, usually to identify, count,supervise, etc., the traffic or flow through it.

In laymen’s terms, the Gate Keeper is the person in charge of managing information. That information can be in the form of a meeting request, room reservation or anything else that requires action from someone else. Often times these individuals are overlooked and underappreciated. Its amazing how much of a difference small talk, a smile or a Thank-You note* can make. If someone helps out you or your organization, make sure to recognize those Gate Keepers that make it possible…they’ll be much more likely to assist you again in the future.

Take a minute to think of all the Gate Keepers you deal with on a regular basis. I challenge everyone reading this to actively show appreciation in some way shape or form to at least one of the Gate Keepers you just brainstormed. I guarantee you will not be disappointed at the results.

*Words of Wisdom – I highly recommend hand written Thank-You notes for just about anything. Everyone loves getting mail and hearing how much people appreciate them.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Hello Again

Wow, it struck me that I haven't written anything in since the end of November. For those of you who are desperately interested in my life, here's a quick recap of what I've been up to:

- Drove the 11.5 hours from Fayetteville to Oxford, OH
- Spent a day in the office
- Went back to MI for the holidays
- Spent Christmas in Cleveland and NYE in Ann Arbor

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Who doesn't love awkward family photos?

- Returned to the office on Jan 3rd
- Worked conferences in St. Louis, MO
- Drove back to Oxford
- The next day I flew to Los Angeles for a week to work at UCLA - got stuck in the snow in Minn for 5 hours on the way there. I was able to meet up with my Big Brother Kellyn Parker and the legendary Jon Buck and learn about "The Colonial".

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Myself and a couple of the UCLA (CA-G) guys before we played musical chairs at half time of a WBB game in front of all 34 people that were there. Photo courtesy of Tyler Wong (CA-G)

- Flew back to the office
- The next day I drove the 11.5 hours from Oxford to AR.
- 20+ inches of snow cancelled life down here. School was canceled 7 out of 10 days.
- Flew out to Austin, TX for the General Officers Conference to learn about the roll out of Phi Delt 2020. Got a chance to meet a good number of our volunteers as well as see the LBJ Presidential Library and 6th Street. A Special Thank-You to Province President Joe Kohout for his guidance and leadership in the face of adversity.

- The beautiful Christie Low flew in for a weekend and I got a chance to show her the sights.

- Arkansas Alpha was installed. We enjoyed hosting Executive Vice President Bob Biggs (GA-E) as well as President of the General Council Scott Meitchen (UT-A). I also got a chance to talk to John Tyson of Tyson Chicken. Incredible guy - very down to earth. It was also great to have Steve Curtright and his friend Ben Wankum here for the weekend. I couldn't have survived the weekend without them. Photos courtesy of AR-A Sweet Heart Tori Pohlner.
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The remaining Fall '09 guys who waited 542 days for this.
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The entire group post-Installation
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President of the General Council Scott Meitchen presenting the charter to Arkansas Alpha President Tyler McKimmey
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Steve Curtright, Ben Wankum and I

- Started and completed a full "Colony to Chapter Transition Manual" which is the first resource of its kind in the Greek world.

- During Spring break I drove from: Fayetteville to Ann Arbor, Ann Arbor to Oxford, Oxford to Ann Arbor and finally Ann Arbor to Fayetteville (2,300+ miles). It was great to be in the office for a couple days to catch up on things and recharge the batteries. Sometimes I think people at GHQ forget what I look like. I also got a chance to participate in the Bi-Prov conference at the University of Michigan. Shout out to Sigma North for our future win in the Iron Phi Challenge. Four chapters set a goal to raise over $25K for ALS and the PDT Foundation. It was also great to have General Council Member-At-Large Chris Brussalis (PA-D) and Past President of the General Council Mike Scarletelli (MI-D) in attendance. It was also great to be re-united with "The Team", even though it was only for a short while.

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Christie and I watching the Pistons beat up on the Knicks

- Started the month off right with the greatest (read: worst) April Fool's Day prank that has ever been played on me. Thank you Steve Curtright.

- Took a trek up to Springfield, MO to visit the men of Missouri State University (MO-E) for a three day visit. It was great to work with them and together I think we came up with some great ideas for improvement. I look forward to seeing their progress in the future. I was also fortunate enough to stay at the humble abode of Mu South Province President Joe Passanise (MO-E) and for that I am grateful.

- This past weekend was ROW Week, which is a large end of the year music festival where each fraternity hosts a musical act in their front yard. We brought in Big Gigantic, which is a mix of techno and saxophone. Everyone seemed to enjoy it and we had zero issues, which made my life easier.

- At the end of the month, I'll be traveling to Southwest Oklahoma State University (OK-G) to assist with their Installation.

These last couple months have flown by. I feel like the next time I blink I'll be back in Oxford. I also want to give a public congratulations to our new group of consultants that will be joining the Dream Team in June: Andrew "Wally" Cole (IN-E), Alex Stefanic (SC-G) and Mike "Rogo" Rogowski (OH-A).