Dos and Don’ts for Student Organization Advisors
Advice taken directly from Macalester student leaders
- Is there to guide members and oversee the organization, but doesn’t exactly ‘create’.
- Is flexible and expects org members to reciprocate that flexibility.
- Knows how their org has functioned in the past and provides insight to new leaders, executive boards, and members, especially at the being of the year.
- Helps to make the org better, but doesn’t feel the need to change it’s core goals and values.
- Knows that they won’t always be needed.
- Understands they’re just as important to the organization as its members.
- Ask questions and get clarification from the org members.
- Attend the orgs events (for at least part of the time) to show your support.
- Have a clear line of contact with the executive board via email, phone, office hours, or scheduled meeting times.
- Let the org know what kind of time commitment you can make and share your schedule with them at the beginning of each semester.
- Work closely with the executive board to give insight and feedback.
- Let students take the more active role in your relationship. The org is primarily their responsibility.
- Use the contacts you already have on and off campus to the benefit of the org.
- Hold members accountable for their own goals.
- Stand up for the ideas of the organization even if you don’t agree with them.
- Do know, understand, and inform on college policies.
- Make goals, decisions, or agreements for the org without their prior consent.
- Forget students are students! They have class, homework, and maybe even a social life.
- Tell the org how they should run their meetings or events. Instead, you can occasionally offer suggestions.
- Be the first person org members go to for questions/decisions.
- Keep the group from making mistakes. (That’s part of working as a group.)
- Fail to hold members accountable if they don’t keep promises or fail to show up for meetings.
- Plan events and run them.
- Expect a meeting every week at the same time.
- Be a stickler for rules (find loopholes when appropriate).
- Make assumptions about the org or its members
- Be a gatekeeper when it comes to financial decisions.
If you are interested in becoming an org advisor or have questions, please contact Allison Greenlee, email@example.com