In the last issue, I spoke of taking stock and evaluating our programs. Now it’s time to take that information and use it to improve what we do.
For me, the most anticipated season of the year is spring. Spring brings many beautiful changes in the out-of-doors, such as flower blossoms, fresh leaves, new grass, and, my personal favorite, young wildlife. I cherish this time of natural renewal, and find myself gladly anticipating every personal change and new experience I am lucky enough to encounter.
This year I find myself fortunate to be amidst some exciting changes in my work atmosphere. These changes are a direct result of the input that many of you provided concerning GLAHNF and its programs through the surveys you completed this summer. First, thanks to all that took the time to provide feedback. Second, WE LISTENED, and as a result some very exciting changes are beginning to take shape in GLAHNF programs. These changes include gradual reformatting of this newsletter; a new publication that will feature “Success Stories” describing past projects funded by GLAHNF that have had positive results; a new First Nations Hub; and a web-based directory of environmental groups, agencies, technical and legal experts, a “tool box” for aquatic habitat activists, and more covering the entire Great Lakes Basin.
Because of my positive perception of change, probably due to my association with spring, I anticipate these new programs as exciting possibilities. I understand however, that change can also have negative connotations for some people and some organizations—for many reasons. Some of my favorite reasons people cite for keeping things the same include “we’ve always done it that way,” “change takes too much time and energy,” and “we don’t know if it will work any other way.”
While I understand the feelings behind this resistance to change, I encourage you to look at the spring and the possible changes you could make in your organization, as opportunities to renew and make things even better. I believe a positive approach to such changes can make the actual experience much more palatable, if not enjoyable. So get out your fall evaluation notes and start planning. After all, doesn’t it really take more time and energy to do things inefficiently, and to do things just because we always have, even though they might not help us meet our goals?
I hope you enjoy the coming changes to this newsletter and to GLAHNF, and I hope this spring season brings you many welcome changes to benefit you and your organization.