By Carrie Ann Olson, Extension Educator, Associate Extension Professor
Behind every well-functioning team, club or group you will likely find a well-greased and organized leadership team. In the 4-H youth development world this team usually consists of youth and adults working together. These adults often wear the hat or title of club leader(s) and they are vital to a successful club leadership team. On these youth and adult leadership teams, the adults serve as mentors, advisors providing motivation and support to the planning and delivery of 4-H club or group learning opportunities.
Rotational leadership is a recommended strategy for 4-H club adult leaderships. New club leaders bring new ideas, new leadership styles and new perspectives to the club. Having a club leader succession plan in place outlining club leadership is necessary for clubs to be successful and to grow. A succession plan is a planned rotation of club leadership.
To support this succession plan, club leadership teams should regularly (annually) complete a club asset / capital portfolio audit. In regard to capital, think about any resources and wisdom you have about the club/group. Here are a few areas to think about.
Social/Human Capital Who are great contributors & supporters in or outside of this Club, who are willing to support in some way? Please include any individuals, businesses, organizations, etc. who you may have had contact & received support from. (EX: Jim, local hardware manager, approved donation of shop supplies for 4-H project learning).
Natural, Cultural, & Built Capital What are great spaces & places this Club has used for field trips and other off-site learning? (EX: local businesses, area shopping center, state park or wildlife areas).
Financial Capital Where are our financial resources sought & stored?
Inventory Capital Where do all of our valuable things live? List items that are purchased & owned by the club/group. Identify the item’s location, who keeps it and where it is stored along with that location’s contact information.
New volunteers are more willing to step into club/group leadership roles when there is some sort of succession plan with capital inventory or portfolio available. Every club / group leader has their own relationships and networks. By taking the time to collect this information in a central location, we are building long lasting community support for the club/group and helping to ensure its future.