Monday, May 10, 2010

Why Do I Continue To Be An Active Member in BDPA?

Cecil Jones is the past president of BDPA Columbus chapter. He recently shared his thoughts on joining or renewing your relationship with BDPA.

Why do I continue to be an active member in BDPA?

I just finished a consulting/training gig, using some of my corporate vacation days, that pays MUCH, MUCH more per day than I will EVER earn in corporate america. This gig came from a local BDPA member.

Last month, a BDPA member called me. They have gotten a promotion and needed guidance/support and motivation on a MAJOR corporate wide initiative. I had experience, documentation and templates that they were able to use.

I have always wanted to teach at a university. Immediately after a local chapter BDPA presentation where I was one of the panelists, I received an offer to not only teach but to be on their board. Working through BDPA afforded me this opportunity.

During one of those past recessions, my company where I had received STAR awards and walk on water reviews, started acting 'funny'. I heard from a BDPA sponsor HR rep there that it was being debated to include me in the next management layoff list. I found out that it was true; I was going to be placed on the list. I called yet another BDPA sponsor company HR rep, told them the situation. That HR rep got me into my new spot in their company within two weeks, after a dinner meeting with their leadership.

I have been presenting at national BDPA conferences for a few years. Immediately after one of those presentations, I received a training gig.

I have received a lot of mentoring. I have been able to assist others (BDPA members and HSCC students) helping to fulfill my commission and obligation to help our community.

When I took my technology certifications and PMP test, where did I get information on the exams and how to pass? BDPA!

When I hear members whine about not knowing what BDPA is about or that they receive no value, I think back to the 2000 and before, when we had $0 in the treasury and passed the hat to buy pizza and soda for meetings. Now we have sponsors. I think back to the Dayton and Cincinnati chapters that have been 'rebuilt' by individuals with vision. Ask Wayne Hicks about going from a 3 person chapter to a 300 person chapter in Cincinnati, sometimes. That was lonely but inspirational. When one sees that, you know the power of being on the right mission. You know that you have the ability to manage in anybody's corporation or organization.

I think about the telephoning, the typed and handwritten postcards that we sent to build membership. Now we have a website.

I think about the loneliness of being one of the few Blacks in technology in the department/divison (still occurring). We have BDPA for support and sharing.

BDPA is NOT perfect. It is as perfect as you have made it. Get into the middle of it. If you want to develop a recession proof network, join the Membership Management team. Find out what fellow BDPA members are doing, where they are working and what they are working on.

Why participate in BDPA? I think you know. What have you done for BDPA (or 'What have you given to yourself') lately?

Please feel free to call me at (614) 736-1100.

Cecil Jones, past president
BDPA Columbus Chapter

Cecil shared his reasons for being an active member of BDPA. Why do you support BDPA?

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