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October 22, 2003:Diary Entry

Taking on even the “acting President/CEO” role has proven to be a challenge. It seems that suddenly there are (or perhaps more noticably) a lot of personnel issues. Staff doesn’t always act in the best interest of the organization. I imagine on our personal time – it is private – but what happens when our private life interferes with our credibility as an organization? I suppose this hits close to home for me as well bcause I have the same dilemma at times.

Today we held an all-staff meeting.  Two hot topics included finance and IT inefficiencies.

As a result, I sent an email to the finance staff removing supervisory authority from the Controller and CFO. They were both directed to continue to work with staff in preparation for the audit.

The Controller left and did not return the rest of the day. I included an agenda in the same email for a finance department meeting I scheduled that is coming up.

I received an email from a part-time contract employee who also separately represents a member organization. It was a heads up of meetings she was scheduling in DC on an issue that our organization was in conflict with.

I still need to review travel authorization files to ensure reconciliation is in place. I need to request outstanding trip reports. I need to verify whether a staff person was on travel status for work while they got a DUI.

I need to talk with the Chairman about getting his per diem and future travel processes in place.  I need to write his speech and write my quarterly report.  I need to review minutes, agendas, and approve board packets for production. 

I need to check on the status of the Legislative Priority books being published to ensure they are on target to be disseminated at the October 29, 2003 meeting.

Then I need to write a report of activities in pursuing achieving those legislative priorities. (State and Federal).

I need to discuss with the Legislative Director: 1. her status – employee vs. contractor, 2. Trip report expectations, 3. Monthly report expectations, 4. Tracking her time on activities by legislative issue for trend analysis, and 5. Method of handling conflicting legislative issues.

I need to figure out some way to unwind and get some rest. I am not able to sleep at night. This is the second night I awoke. Last time at 4:30 am and tonight at 3:30 am. Even worse is my laptop battery is dead so I can’t work.

I think I’ll make an appointment to get ideas on stress management.

By Trudy Sobocienski

My blog, "Beyond Leadership" is a creative place to share my personal feelings and thoughts while working in leadership roles for a variety of Alaska Native organizations, both for and not-for profit entities.

An incredible leader and mentor of mine once asked while we were in Washington, DC, "What happened to you between the ages of 7-10 that motivated you to serve in a native leadership capacity". I was struck by that poignant thought and as such, include actual entries from my mother and my diaries beginning in the early 1970's.

I enjoy sharing these excerpts because it captures the parallels she and I were experiencing throughout life, from two separate worldviews. Hers as a young mother of four and mine as her eldest child.
I have never came across a book on leadership that lays bare a leaders personal feelings, thoughts, hopes, fears and dreams they were experiencing.

So for me, my goal is two-fold:

1. Share the incredible life my parents created for my siblings and I growing up in remote Alaska; and,

2) Sharing my humanity, through my personal diaries and journals, while serving as the youngest-ever President/CEO for the Alaska Native Health Board.

There are passages that will include significant policy issues I was working on throughout my career and travels. There are many more passages that do not.

I cannot speak for my mom's passages, because I am reading them as I share them here, with you; with her permission of course.

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