SCP President's Message – APA 2016

APA Division 13 President - 2015

APA Division 13 President – 2016

I am excited about the opportunity to serve again as President of the Society of Consulting Psychology. This is a combination of “back to the future”, Presidential promises, and a continuation of all the work that has preceded me and will come after me. While there is comfort in returning to a role I served before, it is not worth doing unless I build on our collective history in a way that enhances our future. As leaders we make implicit and explicit promises that ideally resonant with the expectations of our membership. I want to share a few of those promises, and invite you to hold me and the rest of our leadership team accountable for their delivery. We want to make sure we are operating in a way that is a continuation of our 100-plus year history.

SCP is built on foundations, aspirations, and invitations. Our foundation, shaped over the years includes our mission, vision, values, and traditions. The core is remaining dedicated to the application of psychology to consulting with individuals, teams, and organizations. We still take pride in being seen as the “catalyst” division, and are thrilled to have members from a wide range of psychology disciplines, applying this science in practical ways to an ever-increasing number of settings.

I continue to be a dreamer and relish aspirations that are close enough to see with a reasonable probability of achieving. SCP continues to stretch itself. We imagine that more organizations can be psychologically healthy and achieve their missions. We imagine that somehow we will contribute to developing more leaders and more better leaders. We imagine we can significantly increase the effectiveness of teams, leveraging their diversity of experiences and perspectives to be more effective, and more innovative.

If we really do know something about the human behavior, there are numerous invitations for us to use that knowledge to improve the lives of others. Whether you scan the headlines of events today, or browse the sidebars of news reports, as psychologists and as consulting psychologists we can pursue an overwhelming number of opportunities to make a personal, professional, or organizational difference. Our challenge is how to decide where to we will focus.

There are three promises I am making for myself, our leadership team, and our organization this year. The first is that we will have 2020 Vision. We have to sharpen our vision and focus on the few things that make the biggest difference. There are some things we should continue to do. There are some things we may need to stop doing. There are also new things we have to consider. Everything we do will impact our future and our brand. Though 2020 is only a few years from now, we are at an important point in our organizational life that drives us to assure we are putting in place foundations that will sustain us over many years.

Secondly, everything we do will be evaluated in terms of what it has to do with membership engagement and utilization, ME & U. We are a membership driven organization. If we do not meet your needs, we will not survive. If you do not push us to meet your needs you will be allowing us to become obsolete. If you are not a member we want you to become one. If you were once a member, we want you back. If you are a member, we want you more engaged. Whatever the size of our leadership team or of our membership, the health and effectiveness of our organization is more accurately measured by how engaged YOU are and whether you feel we are utilizing the gifts you bring and the interests you have.

Finally, we will have a focus this year on Accelerating Leadership Development. The continuity of most organizations including ours is related to increasing organizational capability and capacity. As we anticipate what is needed in the future, and as we strive to integrate the diversity of styles, the scope and rate of change, and the complexity of our global community, we must continue to build leadership, but must do so faster and more effectively. SCP needs more leadership. Our clients need us to be even better helping them build leadership. Our students need guidelines, support, and opportunities to contribute to this mission. Our emphasis this year includes shaping the Consulting Psychology Conference in Seattle in 2017 around the theme: “The New Wave of Leadership; Accelerating leadership development and increasing impact”

I am excited about this year! We are working to focus on a few things that will make a difference. It will not matter however, if I don’t get more of you, more engaged, and more of you utilizing more of us.

What do you think?

Greg

drgpenn@yahoo.com