2020 is a year that has changed all of our lives. When a dramatic, unforeseen event such as a global pandemic is upon us, we tend to default to what is most natural to us – to our comfort zones. These default behaviors are what form our organization’s culture. If your DECA chapter has experienced a decline in recent months, struggling to cope with virtual meetings and maintain engagement, your chapter culture may need a boost. If your chapter was able to take the past year in stride and maintain productive meetings, strong communication and engaging activities, your culture has most likely adapted well. No matter which of those two categories you fall into, there is always room to improve.
Here are three strategies to strengthen and maintain your chapter’s culture.
1. Member Success Equals Chapter Success
When someone in your chapter does something outstanding, DECA-related or not, that member should be highlighted for all to see in chapter meetings, on social media and around your school.
2. Winning Mindset
Coaching your members to be the ultimate competitors through case study preparation, mock competitions and practice exams will allow them to minimize stress and maximize confidence on competition day.
3. Complacency is the Poison to Progress
If you ever believe your chapter has achieved all that it can achieve, you may have become complacent. Cultivating culture is about continually moving forward and finding the next challenge for your chapter to overcome and master. Whether that is increasing membership, completing all the Leadership Passport Program items, having 50% of your members reach finals at ICDC, or just to keep members engaged, it is imperative that you and your chapter always try to achieve new goals.
Using all of these techniques in unison will help to cultivate a better culture within your chapter. Culture overcomes strategy under pressure. When members are under intense pressure during competition, when chapters are under pressure due to unforeseen circumstances or when other tensions arise; your chapter will fall back on the culture that has been established. We hope that all remains well with you and your chapter. Together, we will emerge from these times as stronger leaders, stronger chapters and a stronger DECA.