Amid all competing priorities in your life, I bet sorority leadership might not rank too high. There is a lot of newness and uncertainty you are probably navigating either as a new member learning what membership means virtually or an upperclassman stressed about what comes after graduation. But for whatever reason, you have found yourself reading this post. I could not be prouder that, despite everything that could cloud the value of sorority, you are seeking to grow or be better equipped to serve your sisters as a leader. Let's talk about three ways I think you can be a rockstar leader in a virtual environment!
Is it just me or does everything in daily life feel a little harder & heavier? Tasks that seemed simple before the pandemic have become major projects to be completed. I can only imagine how that translates to campus life, from online classes to virtual chapter meetings & socially distanced sisterhood.
As leaders on campus, the pressure to maintain a higher standard of work-ethic and progress is unbearable. Despite the culture of unrealistic expectations, we still NEED leaders to provide guidance to our sorority communities! Whether you have been leading all year or looking to take on a leadership in the coming months, I couldn't be prouder of you for your heart for your community. Let's talk what you need to be an inspiring leader to your sisters:
1. Show Up and Support
The best way you can lead right now has nothing to do with a leadership title or position. Leaders are women who are present for their sisters both in private & at chapter events, even when it's not their responsibility. These "title-less" leaders are women we NEED for our chapters to thrive. If our sisters only step up when they have a position requiring them to, we will have pretty average chapter morale.
I understand that "showing up" might seem irrelevant since you are most likely hoping on a video call or replying to a message thread. Even though you might not be supporting in person, the ways you have been given to show up are the ways that your sisters will be watching your example.
2. Adjust to Meet your Sisters' Needs
Want to keep your members engaged in the chapter? Program to meet their present needs! Most organizations and campus communities have removed the specific requirements to be in good standing. While most of those elements are supportive to your members' development and wellbeing, take the opportunity to give your sisters the support, self-care, and grace they are needing right now! Maybe that is through a mental health program or sisterhood activity.
You know your members and what they need better than I do :) I know it can be easier to follow the guidelines and "checklist" given to you by your national organization or Panhellenic community but by taking this opportunity to be flexible and intentional, I promise your members will feel more seen and heard!
3. Give Yourself Grace
In the same way that you are promoting grace for your members, you need to extend that same understanding to yourself. As leaders, we are often encouraged to be intensely devoted to our leadership responsibilities. While I agree that we should take the position we have been elected into or our title-less role seriously, I don't believe that it should come at the cost of our health & well-being.
Being an influential leader comes from first practicing self-care, personal reflection, and responsibility prioritization. Not only will these activities set you up for success as a leader ready to lead your sisters well but it will also serve as an example for your members to care for themselves, too.
This is a unique season for most areas of your live, which includes leadership. Regardless of if you are currently leading your chapter or hope to in the future, this is for you.
You do not need to wait to have an officer role to be an influential leader in your chapter.
I hope putting these three simple steps into practice will help you feel held accountable, relatable, and authentic as a role model in your chapter.
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