President’s Message – October 2020

By Renee Hoekstra, CVS – President, SAVE International

Fellow SAVE International members, I am so proud of everything we have been able to deliver during these challenging times. As I noted in my September article, we continue to surpass my and our clients’ expectations for delivering successful workshop, training and educational outcomes.

As you will see in the conference article from Mike Pearsall, we have a special Virtual Value Educational Event being planned for November and the USACE is going to provide a day-long event about their lessons learned for the virtual delivery of workshops. This is an exciting opportunity to hear directly from clients with an amazing success story.

Speaking of events, once again, I know that Mike has provided much more information in his conference article of what’s coming up in an effort to continue to deliver educational materials and events to aid you in your certification and your maintenance efforts. What I want to focus on is to get you excited about having the opportunity to see one another in-person at the 2021 Value Summit in my hometown of Glendale, Arizona. During a recent SAVE Board of Directors meeting, we discussed the pros and cons of virtual and in-person conferences, as well as hybrid approaches. I will say, it was a rousing discussion because of the success of our 2020 Virtual Value Summit. However, long before the COVID pandemic, SAVE had already signed the contract with the hotel (Renaissance Phoenix Glendale Hotel & Spa) for the event in June 2021. What this means is that we must plan on the event and have made some guarantees to the hotel for attendance. With this in mind, we really want to promote attendance at the 2021 Value Summit. There is another personal reason – I really miss seeing my friends and peers in-person!

Since our Board meeting, we decided to begin offering the virtual Value Summit every other year. So, what does this mean? We were virtual in 2020 and if you don’t attend in 2021, we won’t get to see you in-person until 2023. That’s an awfully long time to not be able to share in our comradery, networking and just getting a chance to see one another.

I’ve met with the hotel and they are having great success in continuing to cater to organizations and groups, even in 2020, to have well organized and hosted conferences. As I had mentioned, the hotel is fantastic, and the room rates are fabulous for a Renaissance facility. We will begin to provide more information on the hotel, which is attached to the West Gate Entertainment venue and the Outlet Shopping Center as well as the Cardinals football stadium and the Coyotes hockey arena. Additionally, the Diamond Casino is only one mile away. This would be a great venue for adding a few days before and after for a vacation with family. Remember the Grand Canyon is only three hours away.

Transitioning to what is happening with SAVE, I just wanted to keep you up to date with things we are working on for our organization. We are having a two-day virtual Board meeting in early October. The focus of this meeting is to bring back the Strategic Plan with all our existing and new Board members. We want to determine what we have accomplished, but more importantly, from our short term strategic goals, where does the Board need to focus our attention for the next two years, are there any goals that we identified for long term that needs to be moved forward into our short term goals and do we need to update the overall strategic plan on where we are going. One of the reasons that we do this is to ensure that we can maintain consistency and continued movement forward throughout our Board transitions. Additionally, we will be hearing from our Tiger Teams on their outcomes to also aid us in helping the Board focus on recommendations that they bring forward.

As I leave office in June 2021 and Mike Pearsall takes over, this allows us to continue to maintain the same focus of those strategic goals from year to year. This way, our Board will continue to be able to deliver as much as we can for the benefit of our members. I will share with you in my November article the outcomes and the focus elements for the next two years.

My term as your President will be up in June 2021. Where has the time gone?! Our 2021 Value Summit will be my last opportunity to address you as President as well as becoming your Past President. As I look back, but also look forward to what we can accomplish between now and June, I realize that there are many things that I wanted to accomplish and have not exactly been able to complete. I believe the many challenges that have been brought about in 2020 have definitely put a crimp in achieving some of my goals, but I also believe and hope that you believe, your leadership team within SAVE have truly been able to be agile and creative in helping to solve those problems and challenges that have occurred because of the pandemic. I will continue, with your Board members, to re-focus ourselves to continue Promoting, Advocating, Certifying and Educating the Value Methodology. I think the virtual approach to educating, training and workshops will actually help us to reach out to a much broader audience if we are creative in our thinking and approach to Spreading the Word and the Word is VM.

Have a safe and great October, take time to enjoy your family and friends to continue to grow and maintain those relationships that support and nurture you. Stay healthy!