Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 40

have focused on making a positive
impact within your sphere of influence,
things change. Leadership changes;
funding changes; priorities change;
external mandates appear. Most people
find change to be disquieting, but
true professionals know that change
is inevitable. They hone the skill of
adaptability and reinvention. When
change is happening around us, we are
called upon to neither resist nor insist.
Our role is to participate in the process.
A willingness to be open and bring
possibilities to the forefront increases
the number of tables one is invited to.
True professionals also create change in
the most intentional and inclusive ways
possible, but when the decision is theirs
to make, they are decisive.
The ability to make quick decisions
when the situation warrants is a
necessary skill, but a true professional
knows that quick decisions aren’t
necessarily the same as impulsive ones.
They resist false urgency. One hazard
of being a frequent crisis manager
is that you may be tempted to see
things through that lens when there
is no reason to act immediately. Holly
Shikano, coordinator of residential
academic initiatives at Georgia Tech in
Atlanta, often reminds staff that “Not
everything is urgent. It’s okay to ask
for help or to say, ‘What can wait?’”
Further, if you are in tune to others’
attempts to force a timeline, you can
institute a more moderate approach. An
old adage wisely advises, “The quality of
my decisions is directly proportional to
my level of patience in making them.”
Most of what has been discussed in
this section can be summarized with
this advice: Keep your perspective in the
face of political realities. It’s not about
you; your answer is not necessarily
THE answer; some decisions are
outside of your control. Not everyone
is nice; not everyone likes you; and
not everyone thinks what you do is
valuable. Being understood is a luxury.
Resources in money, time, energy, and
people are finite. True professionals
accept these realities as neither positive
nor negative. They just are.
Coming to terms with the complex
40

Talking STiCk

dynamics of human organizations can
be liberating, making it possible to stay
positive even in the face of difficult
truths. Viewing your work through a
positive lens allows you to assume good
will in all of your interactions. Positive
relationships are integral to success in
any area of life, and we know this to
be especially true in constructing our
campus networks. True professionals
are highly skilled at managing political
situations and at relating to others.
They are respectful and gracious, no
matter the setting.
The process of learning and
growing as a professional is indeed
that: a process. Just as with any type
of learning, the more thoughtful
and intentional the process is, the
more succsssful the result. True
professionals insist on continual
growth and development. Having a
detailed professional development plan
is essential to moving your skills (and
ultimately your career) forward. That
said, too many think that professional
development is a simple matter of
attending conferences. KJ McConnell,
associate director for residence life at
Saint Leo University in Florida, relays
the challenge of getting his staff to “not
see professional development as just
the chance to have reunions with grad
school buddies.” Have a daily, weekly,
and annual plan. Include an honest
assessment of all areas that you wish
to grow in, and plot the steps. Some
professional development is free,
and some has associated costs. Most
departments are able to provide some
level of funding, but you should expect
to fund part of your plan yourself.
Finally, true professionals have
long-term vision, and they trust that
this legacy will take care of itself. The
usual tenure for any given position
on campus is years, not decades.
Opportunities to make large-scale
sweeping changes don’t come every day.
Our legacies are constructed in ways
that aren’t always visible in process.
Torry Brouillard-Bruce, executive
director for housing, residential, and
Greek life at University of the Pacific in
Stockton, California, says, “We groom



Talking Stick - September/October 2013

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Talking Stick - September/October 2013

Talking Stick - September/October 2013
Contents
New Member Highlight
Vision
Just In
Your ACUHO-I
Transitions
Res Life
Business Operations
Facilities
Calendar
Becoming an Assessment Storyteller
The Quintessential Professional
Conversations
First Takes
Reporting Out
New Members
Snapshot
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Talking Stick - September/October 2013
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Cover2
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 1
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 2
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Contents
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - New Member Highlight
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 5
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Vision
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 7
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Just In
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 9
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 10
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 11
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 12
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Your ACUHO-I
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Transitions
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 15
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Res Life
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 17
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 18
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 19
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Business Operations
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 21
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 22
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 23
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Facilities
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 25
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 26
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Calendar
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Becoming an Assessment Storyteller
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 29
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 30
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 31
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 32
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 33
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 34
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 35
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - The Quintessential Professional
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 37
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 38
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 39
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 40
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 41
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 42
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 43
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Conversations
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 45
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 46
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - First Takes
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Reporting Out
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 49
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 50
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 51
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 52
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 53
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - New Members
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - 55
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Snapshot
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Cover3
Talking Stick - September/October 2013 - Cover4
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