A View from Inside
In the past month or so that I’ve been writing at Agent Genius, my employer, NAR, its volunteers and staff have taken a lot of heat. I’ve watched mostly from a distance but this week I thought I’d offer my perspective from the inside. I offer my personal perspective both as NAR staff and as a professional who spends her days as an advocate—someone who endeavors to get a large, tradition-laden, often intractable organization to do what I want them to do. I’m talking of course about Congress, but the lessons can be applied universally.
Most importantly, I want Agent Genius readers to know that there are NAR staff and volunteer leadership who hear what you are saying, mostly agree with you and are working to affect the kind of change that will lead NAR into the future. We offer new ideas, point out when the same old way doesn’t seem to be working and bring your perspective to the table. This work is hard, not always popular and like in any organization, often met with fear and resistance. We do it anyway because we believe that it is the right thing to do. We support each other but we could use your help too.
Help Us Help You
When I arrived at NAR a little over two years ago one of the first things I was told was that NAR is a member driven organization and one of the fastest ways to get yourself in trouble is to have your project or initiative labeled as “staff driven.” So I join the chorus of AG contributors and commenters who have already suggested that being involved is really the best way to solve the problems that you encounter. Having your thoughts and energy channeled in a constructive way inside NAR helps the “game changers” help you. If you don’t have the time or inclination to sit on a committee or attend a meeting, at least get in touch with committee leadership and share your views and concerns. (If you don’t know how to do this, see my offer of assistance below.)
Share your opinions, complain a bit…sure… but try to have a solution to suggest. Then, don’t be offended if it isn’t immediately adopted. Keep at it and savor the small changes that result. Keep your eye on the prize and understand that it’s a marathon not a sprint.
I know that NAR can sometimes be a difficult organization to navigate—so let me offer to be of assistance reach out to me here, on twitter or the old fashioned way…call me at 202.383.1234 and I’ll try to help you get in touch with a “game changer”. Hopefully we can all benefit as a result.