Program Planner’s Blues: Blue Sky Thinking

Blue Sky Red Hills.jpg

In every genealogical society, genealogical library, local history society etc., there is some person upon whom the executive has dumped the responsibility to plan future programs, find speakers, arrange events. Often its the same person who complained last year about the third appearance of Joyce the scrap book lady.

Ken profile.jpg I empathize with the program planner. She needs help. After one year she’s got a choice between Joyce Scrapbook and another round of “My Favourite Ancestor”. What very program planner needs is a monthly newsletter with fresh ideas on how to plan, implement and deliver progras; how find new topics, new speakers etc. An of course how to improve the teaching and learning environment of the program. The nice thing about a newsletter is that it comes to you rather than waiting for you to go find it like a wb page or a blog.

The technology is here, now for anyone to set up a website with a newsletter feature. Those who locate the website to sign up for the newsletter which is emailed to them regularly. It puzzles me that groups like the Federation of Genealogical societies, Genealogical Speakers Guild and the Association of Professional Genealogists do not look seriously at this and promote it to their members.

Supposing you were a new program planner and each month you received a newletter by email that had a great idea for a program developed into a working plan on how to set it up; a list of tips on issues like room arrangements, lighting etc, a profile of a speaker and his/her topics, and news on learning opportunities for program planners.. Would this interest you? If you were a speaker would you pay to have your profile sent to hundreds of program planners in genealogy groups across the continent?

So why hasn’t someone figured out how to do this? What do you think?


4 responses to “Program Planner’s Blues: Blue Sky Thinking

  1. Sign me up! Seriously, I am the head of our Education Committee, and we are burning out here! We meet this next week to discuss “mini-classes,” our fall seminar speaker, our Open house, and the spring seminar. We need to find people who have topics of interest for the mini classes that run on Saturday’s or Sunday’s in the fall, and the winter. We also will be discussing speakers for the monthly program we do for the members and the general public. We try to book this a year at a time. So, if you have new ideas, let me know! Education is keeping this society afloat right now, and it’s killing the few of us that are here!

  2. I’m working on this right now! My problem is finding people who want it. The societies up here are a bit slow to adapt to anything but the way things used to be, yet they complain about the 20th showing of “Joyce the Scrapbook Lady.” It’s refreshing to see that there is interest in changing the way things operate.

  3. I, like most “professionals” sit on both sides of the table. We endure Joyce, the Scrapbook Lady, as do you,!
    But we have taken the initiative to provide an alternative, a planned program, with hand-outs, Power Point presentations, and in most cases, publications that round out the presentation and I even stay around and give advice and help.

    I speak general research, LDS topics, and Native American research.

    There are many of us around, and often a major speaker will increase attendance, participation, and membership in your society.

    Robert Vann,

  4. So, Robert, and other speakers, what would you pay to have your photo, your bio sketch and your lectures on one of those monthly tip sheets going free to hundreds of gen society leaders? Before an entrepreneur can put that newsletter into the mail box of hundreds of genealogy leaders and program planners, this entrepreneur needs a reward for the effort.

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