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April 2014 President’s Message

The Wisdom of Flying Geese
Quota International of Grand Rapids
President’s Message
September 2012

When you see geese heading south in the fall, they fly along in “V” formation. You might be interested in knowing what scientists have discovered about why they fly that way.

#1–It has been learned that as each bird flaps its wings, it creates uplift for the bird immediately following. By flying in “V” formation, the whole flock adds at least 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew on its own.

#2–When the lead goose gets tired, he rotates back in the wing and another goose flies point.

#3–The geese honk from behind to encourage those up front to keep up their speed.

#4–Finally, when a goose is sick or wounded and falls out, two geese fall out of formation and follow him down to help and protect him. They stay with him until he is either able to fly or until he is dead, and then they launch out to catch up with their group or fly with another formation.

Basic Truth #1–People who share a common direction can get where they are going more quickly and easily because they are traveling on the thrust of one another.

Basic Truth #2–It pays to take turns doing hard jobs, true with geese or with people!

Basic Truth #3–When we’re not in the lead, it’s important to honk our support from behind.

Basic Truth #4–If we have the sense of a goose, we will stand by each other, protect one another, and sometimes make new friends who are going in our direction.

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March 2014 President’s Message

I have heard one question much more than any other lately: Are we really going to do this, even with the weather like it is?
Just so you know, we will call off a Quota meeting only if the facility we use is closed due to the weather or a power outage. If they do close, we will send out an email to announce that. In addition, we will call all the members to let them know. This is for people (like me) who don’t have instant access to their emails.
Of course, we want our members to use their own judgment and only come to a meeting if they feel comfortable driving.

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February 2014 President’s Message

Well, it’s February.  We are in a deep freeze here.  I’ve “bing”ed what to do in cold weather.

Maybe you’ll find this fun…

If you do, let me know. For now, I’m going back to my hibernation!!

-Kim

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January 2014 President’s Message

January 2014

Take a look at these statistics on New Year’s Resolutions:

Top 10 New Year’s resolutions for 2012
1.Lose Weight
2.Getting Organized
3.Spend Less, Save More
4.Enjoy Life to the Fullest
5.Staying Fit and Healthy
6.Learn Something Exciting
7.Quit Smoking
8.Help Others in Their Dreams
9.Fall in Love
10.Spend More Time with Family

Length of Resolutions Data
Resolution maintained through first week 75%
Past two weeks 71%
Past one month 64%
Past six months 46%

People who explicitly make resolutions are 10 times more likely to attain their goals than people who do not explicitly make resolutions

Source: University of Scranton. Journal of Clinical Psychology
Published: 12.13.2012

Successful or not, this tells me that people have good hearts and want to improve their situation and others’ as well. And the fact of the matter is that we don’t have to wait until the beginning of each new year to focus on that goal; every morning presents an opportunity to begin anew!

ps: check out our club in the news!

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December 2013 President’s Message

As the Holiday season begins, may you and your family be blessed with health, friendship, happiness, and peace of mind. I hope the dawn of the New Year brings fresh possibilities for your future. Take time to reflect on the positive things and people in your life and look for an opportunity to pass something positive onto others.

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November 2013 President’s Message

As a rule, I don’t look forward to the end of the year. The march of time, the coming of winter, the closing out on the opportunity to accomplish yet another year’s goals, these things are not comforting to me.

However, the Barnes & Noble book fair and the excitement that surrounds that day is warm and welcoming. The feeling is like a big, fleece blanket wrapping around you. Kids are at the mall, anticipating some time with Santa to relay their secret wishes, people are shopping for gifts, and books, and special items for their loved ones that can take them out of their everyday world. Shoppers are contemplative and happy, thinking about surprising that special someone. The smell coming from the coffee bar fills the whole store. And smiles are everywhere; there is no sign of the stress that sometimes comes with the last couple of days before Christmas.

Our goal of $10,000 in sales for the duration of the book fair is reachable. That’s just an average of $35 per person for the number of people who have participated in the past—286 buying units. We can talk to everyone we know to make that happen because any sale, at any B&N, or online, using our book fair # of 11195823 will get the job done.

Now the cold, hard numbers is a pretty sterile way of looking at it, but a much better way to realize what this book fair is really about, is to think of the students at Northview schools seeing the play The Miracle Worker and understanding a little better what their deaf peers go through. And what about the deaf students knowing that they are not alone in the world with their disadvantage and it REALLY isn’t a disadvantage after all! It’s the young man going to school to be a pharmacist and who is working part- time as a pharmacy assistant who needs good hearing aids to continue learning and get instructions right at work—so many people are counting on him and we can provide the funds for those oh so expensive aids that insurance doesn’t cover. It’s the business owner who had a health issue that treatment of caused hearing loss, now he’s concerned he may lose his business and have to displace his employees if he can’t get hearing aids. And affording them after losing so much business already due to time away treating the other health issue is a burden but not so much, with the help from Quota International of Grand Rapids.

These are just a couple of examples of the impact we make with our efforts and it’s a really fun and enjoyable day. What a blessing!

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October 2013 President’s Message

In August, we had a Special Guest at our Membership Meeting–District 20 Yvonne Babe. In 2014, District 20 will become Region 4, and Yvonne will be the first Region 4 Director.

Quota International is a dynamic group with years of history behind us, and also a great future in front of us. Barbara Schreiber is the new Executive Director of Quota International and is a forward thinking leader.

Quota International President Laura Layman and President Elect/Treasurer Karen Murphy will both be at the Central Area Meeting in Kenosha WI on October 11-13 to expand on the impactful service projects of Quota. Karen Murphy will visit Grand Rapids on Thursday, October 10. Call Kim at 616-443-6138 for information.

Mark Your Calendars for these fun times: International Convention from July 18-21, 2014 in Cincinnati, OH, and the District 20 Conference from May 16-18, 2014, in Port Huron at the Hilton Double Tree Inn.

Yvonne, and Lisa Kent, the President Elect of the Region, put together The Leap Pad, District 20’s newsletter , sent every two months, sharing what is happening in our District. Recent items include: Quota Cares Walk to End Silence: Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo on Sept. 15; Trivia Night in Flint Sept 21 and Iosco County Sept 28; Festival of Cakes in November in Traverse City visit www.festivalofcakes.com; Younkers Community Days in Traverse City on Nov 15-16; and Port Huron sponsored a Fishing Tournament that netted $10,000.
These are Quota Stats: worldwide members: 5,514, District 20: 179 members, Flint: 35, Grand Rapids: 30, Kalamazoo: 15, Iosco County: 51, Port Huron: 37, & Traverse City: 11.

Yvonne encouraged us to “rev up” our club with these actions:

  • Spice up our service or fund raising projects. Here are some examples from other clubs:
  • Change projects every five years. (Netherlands)
  • Each year have a one-time project (Make comfort blankets for stroke patients)
  • Build a hearing exhibit at the Children’s Museum
  • Sponsor a Tennis Tournament
  • Create a more flexible and simplified club structure. Look at our mission statement and see if it can be simplified. Some examples of simplification include:
    • Simplify operations, such as one meeting a month, as Grand Rapids has done.
    • Reduce the size of the Board to make meetings easier.
  • Make better use of technology. There are some cyber clubs that communicate over the internet and only meet for service or fundraisers.

-Kim

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August 2013 President’s Message

You may know that I’ve been out of commission for a while and am working hard to play catch up. So, rather than come up with my own message for August, I will use the words of one of the Influencers that I follow on LinkedIn–Sallie Krawcheck. I hope you get as much from it as I did. Kim
My (New) Third Very Simple Rule of Networking
August 05, 2013
I recently wrote a post on My Two Very Simple Rules for Networking. They are:
1) Meet one new person in my area of interest every month, or significantly deepen an existing relationship.
2) Do something nice for someone in my network every week.
Based on the comments from LinkedIn readers, I am adding a third rule:
3) Make sure that I am spending time with professionals who are different from me.
At an extreme, if my network is made up solely of female financial services professionals of my generation, who all hail from the south, I will likely feel very comfortable with them. And I will likely enjoy my time with them. And I will no doubt learn from them.
But at some point, this will become an echo chamber of similar-enough experiences and perspectives.
Some of my most meaningful new connections over the past few years have been with professionals from different industries and different parts of the country from me. And my most valuable may have been with entrepreneurs who are a couple of decades younger than me, who possess a significantly different perspective.
Research shows that we are all most comfortable networking with (and working with) people who are like us. But just as the most successful management teams bring complementary strengths to the table, so the most meaningful professional networks do as well….even if it takes a bit more effort.
Sallie Krawcheck

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President’s Message July 2013

Better late than never…

Recently I was reminded of the powerful impact of small kindnesses.  Truly, we have only a cursory awareness of the lasting impact and potential influence of our words and actions.

Today, take that extra five minutes to write a note of appreciation to the person who expressed encouraging thoughts when you were going through a hard time.  Try to tamp down your natural impatience when you have to change your plans to give someone a ride or pick up something because the other person is unable to deliver it.

Spend some time talking to a young person about their plans for the future.  Express your faith in their abilities.  When an older person talks about the way things used to be, agree that maybe there are some good qualities lacking in today’s world, namely an overall ability to recognize blessings.

Hold off getting right to your agenda in order to compliment the other party on their look or a character trait.  When you’re pushing the shopping cart through the grocery store, look everyone you pass in the eye and give them a smile.  Spend the time to call someone you haven’t seen at church, work, a meeting, book club, or exercise class for a while, just to say you’re thinking about them.  It’ll take about 10-15 minutes, but makes a lifetime of difference.

You know what?  I guarantee that these things you give out will come back to you multiplied.

-Kim

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June 2013 President’s Message

June is Commencement Month. I thought I’d pass on some of the wisdom that was shared with this year’s graduates. Sometimes in life, a reminder of an earlier lesson is refreshing and just what is needed to give you perspective.

Charlene Li–Founder Partner at Altimeter Group—(Altimeter Group provides research and advisory for companies challenged by business disruptions, enabling them to pursue new opportunities and business models.)

Never be so faithful to your plan that you are unwilling to consider the unexpected. Never be so faithful to your plan that you are unwilling to entertain the improbable opportunity that comes looking for you. And never be so faithful to your plan that when you hit a bump in the road – or when the bumps hit you – you don’t have the fortitude, grace, and resiliency to rethink and regroup.

But for everyone, plans or no plans, keep a little space in your heart for the improbable. You won’t regret it.

Ben S. Bernanke, Chairman, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System At Bard College at Simon’s Rock, Great Barrington, Massachusetts

The history of technological innovation and economic development teaches us that change is the only constant. During your working lives, you will have to reinvent yourselves many times. Success and satisfaction will not come from mastering a fixed body of knowledge but from constant adaptation and creativity in a rapidly changing world. Engaging with and applying new technologies will be a crucial part of that adaptation. Your work here at Simon’s Rock, and the intellectual skills, creativity, and imagination that that work has fostered, are the best possible preparation for these challenges. And while I have emphasized technological and scientific advances today, it is important to remember that the arts and humanities facilitate new and creative thinking as well, while helping us to draw meaning that goes beyond the purely material aspects of our lives.

-Kim

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