News

I Killed A Snake...I Think

Thu, July 13, 2017 7:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


By: Deanna Tharpe, Executive Director, DSAIA

I just moved back to Texas and guess what I did tonight!  

I killed a snake.

Ok, I ran over a snake with my car.

Ok, I'm pretty sure I killed it.

I mean, I think I killed it. It looked pretty dead in my rearview mirror.

And what does that have to do with DSA leadership?  Just give me a few minutes. I promise, I do have the navigation on. Plus, I told Catherine McDonnell-Forney of DSA of Minnesota I could write a blog post on this topic.

Think of the snake as that part of your job that is scary, repulsive, and maybe sometimes even can sneak up on you. You totally just run over that task with your "car" and leave it writhing on that Texas country road, hoping that it really is "dead" or completed to a point that it won't be bothering you again anytime soon. Hey, maybe it just slithered off and now it's someone else's problem.

So, is it wrong to run over that snake and cross your fingers it is out of your life? No, we all face issues or job duties that we just have to address quickly and move on. But we can't go through our days in our organization doing this every time a task rears its ugly head...hissing at us.

I know - you think I'm just talking to staff. Oh no! Board members are guilty of this as well. For every time a staff member doesn't update a database completely or hastily codes the bookkeeping entries for the accountant, there is a board member who only tried to make that member call one time or really only talked to that potential donor or board member once (and then drove off hoping that snake was dead).

So, I ran over a snake. I think it's dead. But to be honest, I'm really not sure.

But our duties as DSA leaders are NOT copperheads or rattlesnakes or water moccasins (Catherine stops me at this point and asks again why I moved back here). No, they are not. So no matter how badly we want to wipe our forehead and drive on to a more enjoyable activity, it's worth it to take the time to do it right.

This is the craziest blog post I have ever written. I hope you are both appalled and impressed by it. 

I want to tell you what WONDERFUL time I had at the conference. I learned so much and came away with lots of ideas for our organization. -Barb Waddle, The Upside of Downs of Northeast Ohio

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Down Syndrome Affiliates in Action started as a conference bringing together outstanding leadership from Down syndrome organizations around the country. Learn More

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