What are you looking for?
Facilitation? Yes, I do those. Boards of directors, corporation boards, executive boards. Chapter members, colony members, governing council leaders. Small groups. Medium-size groups. Large groups. What outcomes do you want? Or, as I sometimes ask, “What do you want people talking about as they leave the meeting?” That’s my job.
Membership Reviews: For Alumni/Alumnae Corporations or advisory groups: Dave can coach and guide alumni or alumnae through the membership review process. He will provide a 25-page outline of the process including a list of over 80 questions to use during interviews. Dave can help with estimating the number of interviewers needed and with the schedule of interviews. He will facilitate a pre-review training session on site and then continue to participate throughout the process as an interviewer or as a “Player coach”–he can sit in on interviews, offer suggestions, or participate as an interviewer. He is also willing to facilitate the decision process after the interviews have been completed. Topics and areas of focus include practical tips to encourage candor and honesty during the interviews, taking notes, allowing facts to surface, asking good follow up questions, and maintaining your perspective during a difficult process. Dave has sample forms for the undergraduates to complete and comment and decision forms for alumni.
Preparation for Show Cause Hearings: Show Cause Hearings are becoming more popular with national organizations and with colleges and universities. While the outcomes are different–an institution may suspend recognition while the national organization may revoke the charter–the purpose of a Show Cause Hearing is the same: A chapter must show cause why it should be allowed to continue to operate as a recognized entity.
Dave participated in over 30 Show Cause hearings as an executive director and he has worked with undergraduates and alumni to prepare for hearings. He now offers a three-hour and a six-hour facilitated presentation to assist the undergraduates and alumni in preparing for and participating in these hearings.
Areas of focus include “17 terms, words and phrases not to use during the hearing and 14 terms, words and phrases to use”; answering the rhetorical question of “Why are we here?” and helping undergraduates prepare their presentation so that excuses, blame-gaming and finger-pointing are eliminated while emphasizing responsibility and the need for change. Dave is a Sherpa in these sessions–he will guide you through National Land or assist in explaining the process with colleges and universities.
Forty Ways to Detect Hazing
It’s right there. Hiding in plain sight. One of the great ironies of hazing is that those who support and practice hazing talk in whispers, use code words and terms, oblique references and then practice the hazing right in front of the rest of us. This session is often requested for volunteers, consultants, law enforcement officers, RAs and others who may see and hear what may be hazing–we’ll help you connect the dots. From midnight runs and entering through a particular door to shouting a creed or wearing a pin 24/7, the hazing is apparent. The session is divided into Probable hazing and No Doubt About It hazing and includes 23 standard arguments posed by those who believe in hazing with snappy answers that you can use in response. Those who believe in hazing do not like this session…which is exactly why I do it.
Is Brotherhood a value? Is Sisterhood an ideal? Time for Truth.
So often these days we tell each other that life isn’t fair because “Everyone picks on us (Greeks)…we are stereotyped…we are categorized…the media is unfair…people think that what they see on TV and in the movies is reality”
In this facilitated session we’ll look at our histories, our values and ideals and most importantly why we exist and whether we are in fact unfairly portrayed. If you like “Truth” then you’ll like this session. We’ll publish our creeds and sayings and examine our community from the outside in. You will tell us whether we are being unfairly portrayed…and if so, what we can do about that.
Leading from the Front and from the back
Is leadership really about having the loudest voice, the most ideas and the ability to shut off discussion? We’ll examine three styles of leadership in groups, consider what leading from the front really means and review how leaders are not necessarily officers and officers are sometimes not leaders. We’ll help you divide your chapter into three or four groups for purposes of evaluating motivation and involvement and what we can do to bring more members on board. Bring your complaints about lack of respect and trust… you won’t be leaving with them.
Risk Management & Harm Reduction
Times and teaching and educational techniques have changed. Lectures, the time-honored “scared straight” approach and black and white choices are not my style. I use case studies to start the conversation and ask our undergraduates to dissect the issues, including chapter culture. And I am pragmatic. The most carefully planned event involves people who may make bad choices. What leaders and members can do to plan for “safe” while being prepared for a different outcome…why do we have these policies and rules…basic legal liability concepts such as negligence, foreseeability and mens rea…are part of the presentation. In the final analysis risk management is a series of choices and that is one of the themes that I emphasize.
When good chapters/members make bad choices
The bystander effect has become part of fraternity and sorority life as much as recruitment or social events. How can a chapter that has good leaders and members engage in conduct that runs counter to everything we say is important—our values, our Ritual, our ideals? Upstanders—those who are will to stand up and speak and act—are needed. In this session we will examine why we don’t speak or act and how we can change that dynamic.
“When things were black and white”
A historical review of membership restrictions in some—not all—men’s and women’s fraternities and sororities with modern applications including theme parties. Presented at NGLA, AFLV, and SEPC. Or, “Frat versus First Amendment: Who Wins?” If you want an animated discussion, ask the question–is inappropriate speech, including costumes, signs and shirts, protected speech?
“Who is really making the decisions in your chapter?”
We know about the elected officers—what about the unofficial EC—the junta or cabal–that is influencing if not controlling chapter culture? Acknowledgement of the second leadership group and changing officers to leaders are two outcomes for this session which encourages members to look at how things work in their chapter. And why.
“When we close a chapter: Do we really?”
Unrecognized or underground groups are becoming more prevalent and more assertive as more chapters are closed—women’s as well as men’s. We’ll review 17 things that national organizations and institutions can do to address or discourage the formation of these groups. I am often asked to present this to administrators at the higher pay grade range who question whether a public institution “Can do anything” about unrecognized groups. The answer: Yes, you can…but it takes courage.
“Leadership & Officiating: Shared Values from gavel to whistle”
From the way officials get out of the Loser Cruiser (van) at the game site to not allowing the crowd to make the call, football officials share much in common with chapter and national leaders. This is a fast-paced and entertaining look into officiating and leadership. When we arrive at the final whistle you will know how MIBT, GTBO, skinny rabbits and Super Bowl calls translate into effective leadership. Bonus: We’ll have a contest between women and men as to who knows the signals used by officials.
“Status Quo: The Real Difference between Leaders and Officers”
Being elected and sitting at the front of the meeting doesn’t make you a leader. Are you leading, supporting change or simply perpetuating chapter culture and “That’s just how we are”? Be prepared to be challenged, perhaps uncomfortable…and to start the process of becoming a leader. If you are a human speed bump who thinks first of why an idea or concept won’t work, then come to this session prepared to change.
“We didn’t think…”
Spring semester 2015 was arguably the worst semester for men’s fraternity chapters in terms of negative publicity, headline grabbing incidents and bad choices…ever. Why? We’ll look at ten things undergraduates can talk about and more importantly that they can change. This isn’t a lecture—it is a factual recounting of choices with audience interaction.
“Leadership Reps: The 10,000 = Excellence Theory”
Quarterbacks are told that bad habits begin changing after 1,000 reps (repetitions) and that excellence can be gained after 10,000 reps. Does that theory apply in principle to leadership? The time that you arrive for a meeting and the tenor you establish are reps, as is the manner in which you cope with disruptions and encourage dialogue. Excellence in leadership starts with practice…and we will practice leadership techniques in this session.
Hazing: What it is, what it isn’t, how it works, how to detect it, and why it fails to meet the ROI
Return On Investment index is among the seven different approaches that I can use. You tell me your outcomes—I will do the rest. One of the sessions I present is entitled, “Fifteen Things I Know About Hazing” which gives me the flexibility to address common arguments in favor of hazing.