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Conference Committee Goals 2008-2009

Julie Olson-Buchanan
June 2008

Goals Report
Committee Members:
John Cornwell (Chair, Site Selection),
Robin Cohen (Workshops Chair-in-Training)
Eric Heggestad (Chair, Conference Evaluation)
Gary Latham (President)
Larissa Linton (Placement)
David Nershi (Executive Director)
Tracey Rizzuto (Chair, Local Arrangements)
John Scott (Program Chair)
Lois Tetrick (Past-President)
Suzanne Tsacoumis (Chair, Workshops)
Sara Weiner (Program Chair-in-Training)
Conference Chair:
            Julie Olson-Buchanan
SIOP Vision: To be recognized as the premier professional group committed to advancing the science and practice of the psychology of work.
SIOP Goals: SIOP will become the…
1. Visible and trusted authority on work-related psychology. This includes:
  • Heightened awareness within lay, business, scientific, and government communities of the role and value of I-O psychology in improving productivity and well-being in the workplace.
  • Greater outreach to the broader field of psychology and related disciplines and organizations (including organizations outside the United States), policy makers, the public, and the media.
2. Advocate and champion of I-O psychology to policy makers. This includes:

  • Increased efforts to obtain federal funding for I-O research.
  • Increased efforts to monitor and influence policy and legislation affecting human behavior at work.
  • Heightened awareness among top managers in business about the value of I-O psychology and I-O professionals.
3. Organization of choice of I-O professionals. This includes:
  • Increased enjoyment and satisfaction of members.
  • More members in all categories, including regular, Student, International, Affiliate, and Associate Members.
  • Higher annual retention rate.
·        Increased support for SIOP members in their efforts to study, apply, and teach the principles, findings, and methods of I-O psychology.
4. Model of integrated scientist–practitioner effectiveness that values research, practice, and education equally and seeks higher standards in all three areas. 
·        Increased collaboration and dialogue between academics and practitioners where science informs practice and practice informs science.
·        Increased collaboration and exchange of ideas with non-North American I-O professionals.
·        Decreased perception of fissure between academics and practitioners.
·        Clear and rigorous means of evaluating the quality of graduate training programs.
·        Clear and rigorous standards for practice.
Conference Committee Strategic Planning Goals
Strategic Planning Goals:
  1. Present the world’s best conference on workplace psychology by featuring cutting edge work in science, practice, and education.
SIOP Strategic Planning Goal: Primarily, Goal 3, Organization of Choice of I-O Professionals (through effects on member satisfaction and retention). Additionally, Goal 1 (Visible and trusted authority on work-related psychology), and Goal 4 (Model of integrated scientist-practitioner effectiveness).
A.     Develop appropriate feedback measures (post-conference survey and on-site mechanisms) for identifying success factors and areas for improvement related to the conference experience.
Progress has been made on this goal in several respects:
1) At the 2008 conference (San Francisco) we introduced an on-site reaction survey. This survey was distributed at the closing plenary session. The open-ended responses were recorded and distributed to key planners from the 2008 conference and the 2009 conference. 
2) Eric Heggestad graciously agreed to serve as the first Conference Evaluation Chair. In this capacity he is spearheading a more comprehensive approach to conference evaluation.
3) The feedback from the on-site survey was used to develop a more comprehensive post-conference survey. There have been some technological difficulties in getting the survey completed for distribution. However, the post-conference survey is nearing completion and should be sent to members shortly.
B.      Successfully manage and actively promote needed modifications to the 3 full-day conference format
Both the on-site survey and post-conference survey will be used to continue to examine further modifications. In particular, responses to the post-conference survey will be used to address the question about whether to modify the all conference reception schedule.
C.    Feature innovative sessions that are relevant, forward looking, and cutting-edge.
The Program Chair, John Scott, and Program-Chair-in-Training, Sara Weiner, along with their committees, have created several cutting-edge additions to the 2009 conference. The President’s (Gary Latham) Thursday Theme Track will focus on evidence-based management. SHRM President Laurence (Lon) G.O’Neil will present an address on Thursday as part of the theme track. The Saturday Theme Track will focus on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). In addition, several related volunteer/non-profit activities will be conducted in conjunction with the CSR theme including an off-site pre-conference volunteer effort to remodel a local school library (underwritten by Target) and an on-site effort to collect books, clothing, and food for Makeitright.org.
In addition to the Theme Tracks, the Program Chair has secured two outstanding invited speakers:  Peter Gollwitzer (NYU) and APA President James Bray.
Finally, we just secured Steve Kerr (Goldman Sachs, Inc.) as the closing keynote speaker for the conference. We expect this will be a very big draw and will further motivate conference attendees to stay at the conference Saturday evening.

2.      Continue to develop and refine innovations to make the 2009 Conference a great member experience.
SIOP Strategic Planning Goal: Goal 3, Organization of Choice of I-O Professionals (through effects on member satisfaction and retention). 
A.     Explore new uses of technology and other innovations to enhance member satisfaction with the conference.
Technology. We are exploring the use of a pre-conference networking system which would allow attendees to network electronically before the conference as well as at the conference. This could facilitate more member inclusion.
Other Innovations. Given the success of last year’s closing reception, we decided to expand it further this year. We have booked the top New Orleans band (The Bucktown Allstars) for the closing reception. In addition we plan to have New Orleans food tasting at the reception. We believe members will enjoy this opportunity to celebrate with one another at the end of the conference and this will further enhance member satisfaction.
B.     Examine New Orleans location to facilitate logistics for members
The Conference Committee met in New Orleans on June 7th to examine the facilities. Overall we were very pleased with the physical layout of the meeting rooms and the appearance of the facilities. There appear to be several potential areas for congregating including a large lobby (with a bar) on the ground level. The planned registration level is right by the exhibit hall which should help to further increase traffic in the exhibits. The Sheraton New Orleans has a number of additional features such as wide screen electronic bulletin boards located throughout the meeting room area. 
C.    Continue to focus on our constituents
A post-conference survey was developed and soon will be sent to conference attendees. We hope this survey will help us to better understand what our constituents desire in the conference experience.
D.    Enhance opportunities for networking and feelings of inclusiveness for all members.
As noted above, we are exploring the use of a pre-conference networking system which would allow attendees to network electronically before the conference as well as at the conference. 
Also, we are considering facilitating more networking by providing a meeting point at evening receptions for individuals who are interested in joining others for dinner.
3.      Maintain communication and outreach with membership regarding issues such as:
·        Changes in program/scheduling
·        Member communications about Conference planning decisions and Conference goals
·        Conference activities and events
·        Outreach to all members, e.g., international members, minority members
SIOP Strategic Planning Goal: Primarily, Goal 3, Organization of Choice of I-O Professionals (through effects on member satisfaction and retention). 
A joint TIP article outlining the major plans for the 2009 Conference was co-written by the Program Chair and Conference Chair for the October issue of TIP. In addition, we have budgeted for theme track flyers and postcards as well as color “cheat sheets” for the program.
  1. Examine possible ways to enhance the 2009’s return on expenses to SIOP. This may include:
·        Some increases in registration fees, although any increase is likely to be minor.
·        Developing opportunities for sponsors to reach our members while being responsive to member concerns about the commercialization of the Society and Conference.
Given our lower than targeted ROE last year and the increase in costs overall, we decided to increase registration fees for the 2009 conference. We are exploring several new sponsorship opportunities including sponsored coffee breaks, special receptions (e.g., CEMA, LGBT, International), as well as a possible plenary sponsorship.
SIOP Strategic Planning Goal: Primarily, Goal 3, Organization of Choice of I-O Professionals (via the responsible financial management of SIOP). 
  1. Sign contract for 2014 conference site (and possibly 2015).
An RFP was sent out in May, with responses due by June 28th. The site selection Committee is reviewing the proposals at this time.