By Koren Phillips, Phi Chi (U of Chicago), International Vice President
Under the Carver Method of Policy Governance, the Ends are defined as a special type of goal that designates the results for which AOII exists to deliver value and worth to our members. For AOII, our Global End serves as the umbrella for all our Ends, providing a touchstone to define and guide AOII’s roadmap for impact. We use these Ends as a flexible guide to ensure that our sisterhood continues to thrive as a living, breathing entity. Our Global End pushes us, as AOII’s leaders, to consider the importance of the impact of our organization on our members – while, of course, being judicious and mindful of the various resources necessary to create the AOII experience.
AOII has always been an organization that looks both internally to our own members and structure and externally to the greater community and world around us. As we consider the relevance and value of AOII, it’s important for us to consider both the internal and external impact of our sisterhood as we look to remain relevant in an evolving world. To support this continued effort to care for and to grow our beloved organization, our Ends are meant to be responsive and flexible, not static and fixed. We review the Ends on a regular cycle to understand if the current array of focus areas continues to meet the needs of AOII. Upon our most recent review, we added an additional End focused on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion to address what we deemed to be a significant missing piece of our roadmap.
Although our Ends are designed to evolve, our Global End connects us to our Rituals (as stated in the Object of our Fraternity: Character, Dignity, Scholarship, and College Loyalty) and our Culture Principles (Accountability and Ownership, Collaboration, Engagement, Innovation, and Open & Honest Communication). Through this connection, we can be an organization that has an impact that is both current and of the moment while remaining grounded in our history. Since our Ends focus on value and worth to our members, it’s critical that this impact is viewed through a lens that gives credence to our past while maintaining relevance and meaning in our present and future.
AOII continues to be the organization that it is today because we are fortunate to foster a sisterhood that values the opportunity to evolve while remaining grounded in what makes our organization special and unique – our history and our past. As we move into our 126th year of existence, our Rituals will continue to be the foundation upon which we can grow our organization to create meaning and impact for generations of sisters to come. Through this evolution, our impact will ensure that we will remain as relevant and dear to our future members as we were to Helen, Stella, Jess, and Bess all those years ago.