February'22 Message from the President

Burcin Turkkan

Skål International World President 2022

My dear Skålleagues,

We are in mid-February, and I would like to quickly update what has been happening in Skål International Executive Board in the first 45 days since I took office to serve as your World President.

Your Executive Board started to work efficiently as of day 1. We have held four Executive Board meetings, with one of them being a three-day in Person meeting in Little Rock, AR. As your President, I started communication series with global Skål International leaders. I met with the International Past President group, all Area Committee, and major National Committees, including their Club Presidents, to explain our goals in 2022 and to listen to their concerns, ideas, suggestions, and answer any questions. I am continuing to meet with National Committees/Club Presidents with the same purpose.

As you know, we have three major goals set for the year, and to accomplish these goals, each Executive Board member is assigned a portfolio. To support the Executive Board in achieving the goals, as promised before 2021 AGM, I have initiated eight committees that will support each Executive Board and portfolio. In a 12.000-member organization with so many experts and talents, we reached out to all members and have 120 members engaged in volunteering / donating their time and knowledge for Skål International. Hats off to all these members for stepping up and working with the Skål International Executive Board 2022 in shaping the future of Skål International. All this movement aims to engage our members and leave a better Skål International for the next generation of leadership.

In the past 45 days, what have we done working toward the goals set? For that, let’s remember the three goals we set:

  1. Restructure of the Governance.

  2. Better Fiscal/financial policies.

  3. Strategic Growth of Membership.

Steps initiated/taken:

For Goal #1 - Restructure of the Governance

  • 8 Committees were established, including Governance Committee and the Statutes/Bylaws Committee, to work actively towards achieving our #1 Goal, which is to restructure governance

  • All Committees have initiated the kickoff meetings. I have attended all kickoff meetings to give the big picture to all Committees, reflecting the expectations from the Skål International Executive Board perspective.

For Goal #2 - Better Fiscal/financial policies

  • In the changing global economy due to pandemic, it does require us to look into our current financial practices; this includes reviewing our current contracts available with third parties to operate Skål International HQ as well as looking into generating additional income resources for the organization.

  • At the first Skål International Executive Board meeting that took place in-person, Skål International Executive Board asked all current contracted third-party companies to be reviewed and new terms to be requested along with 2-3 other possible options to be considered to pick the most feasible parties to work with.

  • The Sponsorship & Special Project Committee is established to look into projects that can generate sponsorships.

Goal #3 - Strategic Growth of Membership

  • The Membership Development Committee is initiated to work with the Membership Director to support opportunities from a global perspective. The Committee has over 20 members from all around the Globe representing all major areas where Skål International exists.

  • The Training & Development Committee is also established to support membership growth by creating important training seminars for Club President to support their mission in retaining and recruiting new members, developing leaders, and creating succession plans.

  • The advocacy & Global Partnership Committee is established to make Skål International more relevant in the industry and voice our stand on global issues with our global partners, sometimes as joint statements or sometimes by working on projects together. The increased relevancy will support local, national, and international membership growth efforts.

  • The media/PR Committee that is established will help all the established committees to make their work visible in the media to increase our visibility and support the goal of achieving strategic growth of membership.

As an organization, we need to adapt ourselves to the new changes the pandemic has brought in all industries but mainly to the Travel and Tourism Industry. It is a healthy practice for organizations to review their structures every 10-15 years to reposition themselves based on the current trends, stakeholders’ expectations, and global economic and technological changes. As an 88-year-old organization, we must do this review and restructuring to make our organization relevant, visible, and up to date to make our organization attractive for future generations to have new leaders to take over and lead Skål International for another 88 years.

Please remember there is only one Skål; it is in our hands how we will shape up the future of Skål International. So let’s work together as ONE to take this organization to the next level, where we all continue to do business among friends for many more generations. #wearestrongertogether

As always, your Skål International Executive Board and I are at your service. Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions, concerns, or feedback at any time.

Always, in friendship and Skål,

Burcin Turkkan

Skål International World President 2022