Stepping Outside Your Comfort Zone
By Grace Park, State President
As emerging business leaders, we are often faced with various obstacles. Whether it’s public speaking or running for an officer position, many of these challenges involve being shifted into an “uncomfy” zone. Stepping outside of your safe bubble is understandably scary; there are
feelings of worry, stress, and uncertainty since you’re walking into unknown territory. Although breaking out of your comfort zone can come off risky, taking that initial leap can also provide great measures of success.
First, stepping outside of your comfort zone allows you to grow and develop as an individual. It’s difficult to build new skill sets, gain experience, and extend proficiency if you stay in your enclosed environment. For example, let’s say public speaking is your greatest fear. Many
future employers expect their candidates to speak with clarity and confidence and consider public speaking essential as an employee. Challenging yourself and competing in a presentation event can help you immensely in situations like this. Through FBLA’s competitive
events, you can receive feedback and critique of your performance and use that to improve your dexterity.
Additionally, taking on new heights can broaden your horizons and discover new passions. Running for a local, state, or even national leadership position can sound daunting,but once you’ve launched your campaign and experienced an election, leadership can become
a new area of interest. Although losing an election may sound less than ideal, the experience you receive from the process is what truly counts. So next time you run for an office position,you can build from your past knowledge and aim for success.
It may seem very overwhelming to be pushed outside of your comfort zone and that is totally okay. Make sure to tackle new experiences at your own pace and don’t worry about others. This is your FBLA journey and being open to new experiences can make your expedition
Running for State Office
By Jonah Kramer, State Treasurer
Running for state office can be intimidating, and you might be questioning whether you are up for the challenge or if you would even get elected. The steps to becoming an officer aren’t complicated though.
According to the Illinois FBLA Bylaws, state officer candidates should have experience as either an area or chapter officer. Each chapter can nominate one candidate for either president, secretary, treasurer, or reporter. Talk to your adviser as soon as possible if you wish to run for one of these positions. If you are chosen as your chapter’s candidate, you will receive an application to be completed by February, date TBD. There are two other ways to become an officer. All elected Area presidents are automatically State Vice Presidents. Additionally, the State Parliamentarian is chosen by the highest scoring participant in the Parliamentary Procedure test at State who also applied for the position. Ask Warren High School if you have any questions about the parliamentarian position :)
Elections will be held at the State Conference in Springfield, April 1-2 after all candidates give a speech and answer questions at a Q&A session. Don’t underestimate your chances to earn a position, as two positions were won by uncontested races last year.
Make no mistake, being a state officer is certainly a time commitment. The term begins after the National Leadership conference. Officers are expected to attend a week-long conference in Springfield in late July, which includes ICCCTSO and SLW. Another annual event is the FBLA State Board Meeting, typically held on a Friday-Saturday in September. Throughout the year, officers spend time working on tasks outlined in a Program of Work which is drafted at ICCCTSO. Tasks include sending out emails, finding sponsorships, and creating social media content. Learn more about the specific responsibilities of each position.
All that being said, it is extremely common for state officers to be heavily involved in other activities while still having the time to serve the Illinois FBLA. For example, the majority of officers on this year’s team play a varsity sport and hold other leadership positions.
If you have any questions about the election process and running for state office please reach out to me or any of the state officers!
The Importance of Social Media in Business
By Katie Bach, State Reporter
Social media is a valuable source of communication among friends, family, and even colleagues. In the business world social media is often used for things such as..
- Political Campaigning
- Viewing Stocks
- Sharing Ideas and other information across long distances
- Business Promotion
- Recruitment and selection of new employees
- Yahoo Finance
- And many others
In conclusion the benefits of social media are very broad depending on the business type but I believe that social media makes a huge impact on the business world. The real question is, what would they do without social media in the business place?
Don’t forget to Follow Illinois FBLA on social media for more FBLA updates.
Informal Parliamentary Procedure
By Yash Sharma, State Parliamentarian
Parliamentary procedure does not need to be as scary or boring as it may sound. When most people hear the term they immediately think of boring board meetings of their school’s parents council or local neighborhood board. In reality, Parliamentary procedure is a primary mode by which businesses and organizations expedite business meetings and inquiries around the world. Your FBLA chapter can begin to implement
Have you ever felt like your chapter’s member or board meetings are prolonged and take too much time out of each member's day? Then we have the perfect solution for you. Try implementing some of the following practices into your chapters' next scheduled business meeting.
- Rise/Raise your hand and gain recognition before speaking
- Keep your discussion on topic while discussing an issue
- Do not introduce a new topic until the previous topic is done being discussed
- Request More information from the chair when necessary and appropriate
- Do not discuss a topic beyond what is necessary to complete business
- Allow amendments and adjustments to pending business
- Follow a prescribed agenda or order of business for meetings
- Allow deviation from this prescribed agenda if an urgent matter arises
- Always direct your attention towards the speaker/chair
- Have a chairman/president facilitating meetings
- Have a secretary/member take minutes(notes) of the meeting
- Take votes on questions that will require action
- Votes can be taken by raising hands and counting or even just a simple voice
vote; All those in favor say aye... All those in favor say no
- If a majority of the members want to perform an action then it should generally be
- Allow for recesses(breaks) in meetings
If your chapter implements these simple and easy uses of parliamentary procedure, I
assure you that business meetings will be moving at a faster pace than ever. These
informal applications are a dozen of the hundreds of rules of parliamentary procedure
available. Once these are put into action and familiarized then your chapter can begin to
implement more and more of these practices. With parliamentary procedure, no matter
how informal, it is guaranteed that your chapters’ business will be expedited.
By Halle Smith, State VP, South Western Area
As members of FBLA, we have many reasons to appreciate our organization. FBLA works to change the lives of students everywhere, helping them turn into business leaders, allowing them to gain many experiences, and most importantly, grow and develop as individuals. So what better way is there to show our appreciation of these benefits and allow other students to see them than by recognizing a week dedicated to FBLA and PBL?
Every year during the second week of February our organization recognizes “National FBLA-PBL Week.” This week gives Chapter members everywhere an opportunity to show their community what FBLA and PBL are all about. During this week it is important for Chapter members to plan different activities for each day and encourage all members to participate and complete them. Community service events are a big part of this week, but the activities can range from a variety of different events that specifically appeal to a Chapter.
There are many ways Chapters can utilize this week to get the most out of it. Chapters can spread the word about their organization and show others what it’s like to be involved by posting and sharing the activities that they complete on social media. They can also use this time to show advisor appreciation, because without advisors FBLA-PBL would not be possible. Career Awareness Day can also be recognized by Chapters during this week, they can invite alumni or local businesses to come in and speak.
National FBLA-PBL Week is a great opportunity for Chapters to spread their influence, invite new members, involve the community, participate in fun activities, and also show appreciation for their advisors. Go FBLA-PBL!!
How to Recruit Members
By Lalit Gurrapu , State VP, Central Area
With over 230,000 members, FBLA is an organization that exists solely because of its committed members that contribute to the growth of the organization as a whole. To continue growing this organization, it is imperative that we understand how to recruit new members to your local chapters.
To do this, I want you to brainstorm and think about why you love FBLA. FBLA is more than just a competitive event organization, think of what the organization has provided you with. Is it the opportunity to network, the opportunity to travel, the ability to develop skills through the BAA’s, the ability to compete, or the friendships you build throughout the organization? After you’re done brainstorming, list everything you thought of down. Now communicate your love for FBLA to others! Use your passion and voice to talk to your underclassmen friends and drive the points to why you love FBLA and what they might gain out of it. Use social media, your school’s club fairs, school newspaper, school announcements to push your message for their recruitment. Prospective members can sense how genuine you are when you are either giving your recruiting speech or they read that message in the school’s announcements, so it is important that you stay true to yourself and to why you love the organization, furthering the possibility of expanding your chapter with newer members.
By Callie McAdams, State VP, Western Area
One of the most enjoyable aspects of FBLA is the chapter activities. Each chapter has their own activities and traditions that they do. This means there are a variety of activity ideas that can be implemented into your own chapter. Here are some ideas to try out in your chapter.
● FBLA week is often filled with various festivities. Many chapters designate themes for each day so students can dress up and participate in celebrating FBLA week.
A few theme ideas include:
FBLA shirt day,
blue and gold day,
and sports day.
It’s great to include an activity as well. My chapter has a trivia day during FBLA week.
● Dodgeball tournament- My chapter hosts a dodge ball tournament every November to fundraise for March of Dimes. The majority of the school participates by signing up to play. Not only do FBLA members enjoy the activity but the whole school does.
● Movie night- Multiple chapters host a movie night social event. This is a good way for students to interact with each other.
There are a tremendous amount of possibilities for chapter activities. Take inspiration from other
chapters or get creative and make your own. The key to a successful event is to get members
involved and to be inclusive. Most importantly, have fun!