Hello all and happy spring! The weather is getting warmer, and I don’t know about you, but I have cabin fever like never before. I know we’re all itching to spend more time outside, and looking forward to days of spending more time with our friends and family. We continue to be challenged with navigating continually changing circumstances, though thankfully we are now heading in the right direction. There is finally light at the end of the tunnel. During this time of loosening restrictions and increasing vaccinations, many of us are left wondering how to transition with the changes. What is right and when? I want you to know that through it all SMPS-NY continues to be here for you, our members and community. We have never needed to rely more on our friends and colleagues, and I am truly thankful for this network. I hope you feel that too!

In Peter Shankman’s recent presentation, The New Butterfly Effect, he compared our situation with that of a caterpillar going through metamorphosis to eventually emerge as a beautiful butterfly. He described the time in the cocoon as a very messy and unstable time, similar to the time we’re going through during the pandemic. Peter explained that the caterpillar doesn’t realize its future when building its cocoon. Whereas, we have the distinct advantage of knowing that we will come out of this. We will emerge, evolve, and thrive. We learn from the pioneers and early adopters, and then from our peers who are all testing the new waters, and sharing lessons learned and best practices. Reach out to your fellow professionals and be sure to give what you can, as well as receive. We all have good intel to share, and we will all get to a better place together.

In this month’s platform, I’d like to share and remind you of some of the SMPS resources available to you and your firms that are especially valuable right now. Is your firm looking to hire? Are you seeking a new job? SMPS New York offers the current local listings on our website’s Job Board. Our listings include roles for all levels of marketers, business developers, and related positions. What a great resource for our community! You should also know that the SMPS HQ website’s Career Center also offers new job listings. These two resources, while not synced, offer a great variety of positions that will enable you to explore where you’d like your career to go. I encourage you to check them both out!

Next, are you familiar with MySMPS? You absolutely should be! Truthfully, I could write a whole platform just on MySMPS, but I will try to keep this brief-ish! Available only to SMPS members, this is an incredible multi-dimensional resource. First, check out the Communities. There is something for everyone. Whether you’re a graphics guru, into high tech, or looking for best practices from your business developer colleagues, there’s a Community for you. Each Community offers the opportunity to post questions of your peers across the country. You can also search the discussions for topics that may have already been posted. An incredible wealth of information. In addition, each Community also has a library of materials, blogs, event postings, and a listing of its members. MySMPS also offers a directory of all SMPS members, searchable my multiple criteria. A great resource for teaming in other regions and tapping fellow members with specific backgrounds. HQ also posts reports and other shared files regularly. I urge you to check out MySMPS!

I hope you were able to join us for some of our events this past month! On Feb. 25th, we held our monthly SMPS-NY Virtual Meet & Greet, with guests Julie Pampuch and Nicole Veenstra. These are great informal gatherings, led by our Director of Membership, Elizabeth Bellsey. Our next SMPS-NY Virtual Meet & Greet is scheduled for March 25th, with guest Sharyn Yorio, Director at Large, Chapter Champion, and Organizing Committee Co-Chair for the SMPS Northeast Regional Conference (NERC). On March 17th, we were thrilled to have Peter Shankman present The New Butterfly Effect. Peter always offers great insights and life lessons learned. I strongly recommend following Peter and joining his mailing list. Two additional upcoming events will focus on professional development. First, our Coordinators Club: Wheel of Discussion will be held March 23rd. Catch up with the Coordinators Club for a series of speed discussions on various topics. I am looking forward to this innovative discussion format and content! Additionally, on March 31st, the SMPS-NY NJ Affiliate will present Elevate Your Career. This program will be beneficial to marketing professionals at all levels, as we continue to navigate our careers, effectiveness, and leadership paths. Don’t miss it!

Two of our signature annual events are coming up in May and June. Please mark your calendars!

First, our annual SMPS-NY Town Hall will be held May 13th. We truly look forward to this event each year, as it gives us the opportunity to connect with our community (SMPS members, and those considering joining) and take a deeper dive into what makes for a meaning membership. It is a time for bringing our community together, to check in with each other, hear how you’re doing, and learn what’s most important to you now and going forward. What do our members need, want, and expect from our chapter? Much is learned in both directions, and bonds are created as we realize we have many of the same concerns and goals. I personally invite each of you to attend this event and create impact together. Registration is open, and this is a free event.

Second, please save the date for our 2021 Annual Meeting and Liberty Ball on June 24th. We love celebrating our members and their firms with our Liberty Awards in multiple categories for marketing communications and professional achievement. Our Board of Directors election process is also starting very soon! Please be on the lookout for our emailed Call for Nominations. We have several Board positions that will be open for nominees. Our election process culminates in the announcement of our new slate of Board of Directors at the Liberty Ball.  Our Call for Entries is out, and entries are due by April 23rd!

In closing, I hope you will join me in finding a renewed optimism as we head into brighter, sunnier days. Literally and figuratively. I hope you will have a ‘spring’ in your step, and evolving energy as we eventually emerge from this cocoon and soar as we should. Your friends and colleagues in the SMPS-NY community are right there with you. And thank goodness.