President Vogt’s Six-Month Update Presentation

President Vogt’s Six-Month Update Presentation Presented during GBA’s 2018 Fall Conference November 3, 2018 ~ Nashville, TN

The last time I had the chance to address  our members was shortly after the gavel had been passed and I was new in my role as President.  I am happy to be here today to share my six-month update.


When we were in Chicago, I had the opportunity to roll out GBA’s 2020 Strategic Plan which was formulated under the leadership of our most recent Past President, Charlie Head.  I shared with you our plan which included three objectives:

      1. Strengthen GBA’s Brand
      2. Turbocharge the Member Experience
      3. Celebrate Successes

    Each of those objectives will require several years of effort to complete which is expected for a strategic plan.  They are the destinations which we are driving on our path to 2020.

    I am happy to report however, since April we have made progress using those objectives as our crosshairs to our targeted future.

    During our Summer Board meeting we focused time and energy to make sure we have the platforms to achieve all three objectives and 6-months into our fiscal year we have many successes and several initiatives are underway under each of our strategic objectives.

                              STRENGTHEN GBA’S BRAND 
    Sharpen our focus to deliver on the Value Proposition     

    Our first objective is to “Strengthen GBA’s Brand”.  While the GBA brand has always been built on a strong foundation of collaboration, the Board is looking for ways to strengthen our Brand.  We are actively recruiting new members to GBA and helping each new member-firm engage immediately after they join.  We are meeting with existing members to improve engagement and on-boarding new members, so they can access our material and become involved in committees and councils as quickly as possible.

    One exciting new development that will significantly strengthen our brand was discussed earlier by Rich Johnson when he introduced our Peer to Peer Groups.  These groups are where member firms can come together and help each other manage risk and optimize business performance in a uniquely GBA way.  I am so excited about this initiative.  Thank you, Rich and the Peer Review Committee.

    Develop a unique “member experience” to further drive value and connection

    The second objective is to Turbocharge the Member Experience.  We are working on initiatives to improve warmth and friendliness, enhance the engagement of our Committees and Councils, and expand opportunities to engage more employees from each member firm, especially those who are under-represented.

    I am happy to announce we are again launching a New Leaders group in 2019.  This effort has been so valuable in the past to bring fresh ideas, and new energy to our Association.  It has also been a valuable platform for new leaders to grow through their involvement in GBA.  This will be the 4th New Leaders Class for GBA and we are looking forward to another successful group.


    Highlight the accomplishments of members that promote our values, purpose and strategy while elevating our profession and contribution to our overall success.

    I am also happy to report on the progress we are making on our third initiative “Celebrate Successes”.

    We have a lot of successes to celebrate.  One of the biggest opportunities to celebrate is our long and rich history.  As we heard from Matt Poirier, in about six-months we will gather on Maui to kick off a one-year celebration of our 50th Anniversary.  Talk about a celebration!  Thanks to Matt and the 50th Anniversary Task Force for putting together 12-months’ worth of celebration!

    Also, as Laura Reinbold and Jay Martin shared with you yesterday, GBA is launching an annual awards program to recognize those volunteers that give so much back to the Association.  We will continue to celebrate all the volunteer champions in our Recognition and Awards Banquet each Spring and will add these annual awards to that program.  Thanks for putting that program together Laura and Jay.

    More Areas of Success

    In summary, we made significant progress on our three strategic objectives in the past six-months.

    It is also important to know we are making progress in other areas. GBA continues to produce new and updated valuable reference material at a record pace and your downloads of those documents has never been higher.  In the past two years we are averaging almost 20 downloads of GBA reference material each business day.  That is over 5,000 downloads each year.  Amazing numbers!  Thanks to Chuck Gregory, Chair of the newly formed Publications Committee and to the members of the Document Review Board, Kurt Fraese and Jim Withiam for keeping pace with all the publications.

    Thanks also to our Committees, Councils and Task Forces.  They are the engine that drives all these publications and programs and I have never seen the activity level of these groups so high.  Thanks to all the leaders of those groups and all the volunteers that support them.

    As with your businesses, the true test of health is often financial.  As you heard from Art Hoffman’s Treasurer’s Report, we are fiscally responsible and financially healthy with more money in our reserve accounts than we have had in many years.

     Looking Forward

    With six months gone, I am excited about the next six months.  We will continue working on the three strategic objectives, continue looking for ways to provide more value to all our members, and  to look for more members to join our Association.


    In closing, I want to thank you for coming to Nashville for our Fall Conference.  I want to thank you also for all the support you provide to GBA in so many ways.  Lastly, I want to thank the Board and the GBA Staff for all the support they have provided me in the first half of my Presidency.  I look forward to seeing you all on the beautiful island of Maui in April.

    Thank you.