Student Engagement

Officer Transitions

A well-executed officer transition plan is essential for sustainability in you organization.  Assembling officer transition materials can help next year's officers build upon your past successes.  Materials should be as detailed as possible and include information on:  past meetings, programs, events, and future direction for the organization. Be sure to mention any helpful contacts or community resources you’ve worked with.  Any maps, logistical diagrams, publications, or past email communication can be helpful tools for future officers as well.  Having these available to new officers reduce the learning curve and help new officer’s acclimate to their new responsibilities. These materials can be enhanced by adding a transitional meeting to answer questions and provide clarification.

Why is an Officer Transition Manual Needed?

  • Help formalize the end of the executive board's term of service

  • Provide an opportunity for outgoing officers to reflect upon the prior year

  • Allow leadership to share past successes and future goals

  • Prepare incoming officers for the responsibilities of their new positions

  • Diminish the need for incoming officers to "reinvent the wheel" or “start from scratch”

  • Introduce the incoming officers to the Faculty/Staff Adviser

What Materials Should be Exchanged?

  • Past event/program notes and processes

  • Past budget and financial statements

  • Transition Binders and worksheets

  • Important usernames and passwords

  • Combinations to padlocks on any student organization storage units

  • Any other vital information necessary to effectively perform officer duties

Suggestions for an Effective Transition:

  • Utilize checklist to guide the overall transition process

  • Encourage individual meetings between each outgoing and incoming officer.

  • Prepare a binder of information to pass on (this could be a physical or electronic binder).

  • Update your officers in the Student Organization Database.  If incoming officers are not taking over immediately, consider creating positions like "President-Elect" and "Treasurer-Elect" and giving those positions the same access as President or Treasurer.  Doing so allows incoming officers the opportunity to navigate the database while the current officers are around to answer questions.

Topics for Review during Officer Transition Meetings:

  • Officer duties

  • Membership needs

  • Programs and activities

  • Present organizational structure

  • Group's short and long term goals

 

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