Bluegrass Cycling Club
Strategic Planning Retreat
Saturday, February 19, 2011
Members Present: Keith Batchelor, Griff Baute, Jamie Bagley, Mike Bagley, Bill Cole, Dwayne Edwards, Christian Erickson, Peggy Littrell, Jeff Pearson, Phil Pietrowski, Terio Sutherland, Pam Thomas,
Purpose: Discuss direction and strategy for 2011.
- Welcome and Administrative Details
- Peggy discussed transition of the organization to a committee run organization rather than an individual or board run organization.
- Review of the by-laws – The by-laws were reviewed in their entirety. The board discussed amending the by-laws to add a “time out” period between the close of nominations and start of voting, for the board of directors, and after voting is completed before the election is certified to provide members with an opportunity to ask questions or challenge the process or procedure. By-laws changes require a vote of the membership.
ACTION ITEM - Pam will prepare proposed amendments relating to the voting process and will distribute changes for consideration. At this point, the board will not call a special meeting to propose the changes, but will instead implement the changes for the elections for 2012 and will have members consider the proposed amendments at the annual meeting in January of 2012.
- Technology/IT Strategy
Discussion Leader: Phil Pietrowski
RETREAT GOAL: Identify relevant questions and issues. Establish a committee to recommend an action plan and budget to the board.
How will the club use the web and other resources in the future to promote growth and to enhance efficiency and effectiveness?
- Identification of issues and concerns relating to technology/IT
- Update and improvement of membership and accounting software and systems
- Development of procedures and guidelines for what is posted on the web, when it is posted, who requests postings, etc.
- How to make necessary documents and forms more easily accessible
- Use of social media and other forms of communication
- Storage and preservation of important information and documents
Discussion: We currently have over 600 members. Everything we do is through volunteer efforts. Therefore, we need to try to find a way to use IT/Technology to make us more efficient and make communication more effective without increasing the work load on our volunteers. The question is, how can we use IT to have a bigger impact with less time?
Areas to look at –
- Our membership system;
- Ride statistics;
- Project management – how can do better at providing relevant information so that everyone who needs it can access it;
- Document storage;
- Integration of membership and accounting;
- Inventory control records and process;
- Transferability - Systems need to be such that it is possible to change responsibility without glitches or lapse of information;
- Improving knowledge transfer;
- Registration system – can we save money by developing and operating our own registration system?;
- Planning for future growth – Our IT system should accommodate growth;
- Upgrade of the website;
- Use of social media – development of protocols and guidelines
- Website management - developing a protocol for how items get included on our front page and who is responsible for making decisions.
ACTION ITEM - IT Committee- A committee was formed to examine the questions and issues identified above, and to report back to the board with recommendations and a proposed budget:
Chair: Phil Pietrowsiki – Committee members – Jamie Bagley, Mike Bagley, Griff Baute, Terio Sutherland, and Nedim Slijepcevic. The committee will seek input from merchandising, ride statistics, and other club members as needed.
- Philanthropic Philosophy
Discussion Leader: Pam Thomas
RETREAT GOAL: To articulate a philosophy and to provide additional guidance to the Philanthropy/Education Committee
What types of events does the club want to support, and at what level? Do we have a priority of funding or events/initiatives we consider to be of higher priority than others?
- Initiatives/undertakings that are ongoing and directly support cycling such as community bike shops, trail development and maintenance;
- Charity events that involve cycling with proceeds going toward a cause not directly related to cycling (Bluegrass Alliance Ride, Ride for the Red, Markey Tri for Sight)
- Annual cycling events – Bike Lexington, second Sunday events
- Allowing rides to obtain insurance through the club … is this part of philanthropic/education or some other area – Do we need a policy on this?
The board discussed requests for funding in general and how to handle them. After discussion the following motion was made and approved:
ACTION ITEM –Motion to address funding Requests not meeting the standards or requirements for Philanthropic Funding - Pam made a motion to establish a miscellaneous fund for use is satisfying short term individual requests of less than $250 from groups outside the BCC . The motion was seconded by Phil and approved unanimously. The board also decided that funding requests from outside groups will be referred to the executive committee which can approve the request or refer the request to a committee for consideration. In approving a request, the executive committee will identify a budget category from which the request shall be funded. Action on the request will be reported back to the board at the next meeting following consideration of the request.
The board discussed the types of events or endeavors we have funded in the past – which include the following:
- Events or initiatives that promote cycling directly - Examples include Broke Spoke and Folk Bike ReCyclery – Advocates using bicycles as part a lifestyle and promotes integration of bicycles in the community;
- Charity rides where proceeds do not go directly to bicycle advocacy or some other purpose directly related to our mission; and
- Triathalon events where proceeds do not go directly to cycling advocacy.
- ACTION ITEM - After discussion, the board decided to direct the Philanthropy/Education Committee to develop proposed caps for funding with higher caps for programs and initiatives that more directly support our mission.
- ACTION ITEM – MOTION TO ALLOW COMMITTEE APPROVAL OF REQUESTS FOR INSURACE COVERAGE/CLUB RIDE DESIGNATION – The board discussed how club assistance could be provided for rides not requesting philanthropic support or other types of funding. It was generally agreed that to the extent the board can offer insurance coverage for riders and can promote different rides and events, we should strive to do that. Pam made a motion that the philanthropic/education committee be allowed to approve the provision of club insurance up to a maximum of $250, and the designation of a ride as a club ride if the ride meets the requirements to be a BCC ride and if the committee is satisfied with the organization and appropriateness of the ride. Before approving a ride, the committee will evaluate the ride in relation the club’s mission and nondiscrimination policy. The motion was seconded by Christian, and approved unanimously.
- Budgeting/Fiscal Policy
Discussion Leader: Terio Sutherland
RETREAT GOAL: To discuss and determine our philosophy/rationale about the size and purpose of our reserve, our fiscal needs and our expenditures
Discussion: Terio reported that last year, we retained our reserve of $35,000 and in addition, we increased that amount by $15,000 so that we now have $50,000 in our reserve. The original purpose of the reserve was to protect us in the event of a rain out of the Horsey Hundred. With on-line pre-registration, this is not as large a risk as it once was as we have substantial amounts of funds from pre-registration. What should our reserve levels be? It was generally agreed that the reserve be retained at $35,000. It was noted that we will likely spend additional funds for our IT endeavors and possibly some other initiatives which would spend down the $50,000.
Corporate Sponsorships – ACTION ITEM - After discussion, it was generally agreed that the board should establish an interim committee to develop and present parameters for corporate sponsorships for BCC events – The committee should be established after the Horsey Hundred this year.
It was suggested that after the board receives the budget request from the IT committee, that the board should identify and revisit recurring expenses so those expenses can be used to establish goals for corporate sponsorships.
ACTION ITEM – DETAILED BUDGET REPORT – After discussion about our current level of budget reporting, the board agreed that a more detailed budget report should be provided to the board before every meeting. The report will be e-mailed and discussed as needed at meetings. Terio will begin sending reports for consideration, and so the board can decide on the information needed.
- Member grievance procedure
Discussion Leader: Pam Thomas
Discussion: After discussion, it was decided that we do not need to develop a formal member grievance procedure at this time. Everyone agreed that it would be helpful to include a place on the website where suggestions can be submitted to the board.
- Club Events
Discussion Leader: Dwayne Edwards
Discussion: Dwayne noted that over the last 5 years, there have only been 3 events that we’ve held every year. The annual meeting, the Red River Rally, and the Horsey Hundred. It was agreed that these three events should continue. Dwayne suggested that we look at adding two additional events … possibly a ride where we partner with a nonprofit and split the money, and a race.
- Bike race – Time trial? – This may take a bit of time and requires some coordination. Consider this for 2012.
- Charity rides –ACTION ITEM - It was agreed that we should sponsor a charity ride, and for this year, the ride should support the two community bike shops – The board will explore the possibility of sponsoring the charity ride as our Labor Day ride. Bill will head and work on forming a committee to work on the charity ride. Pam will help.
- Another possibility is to work with Midway Renaissance on the supported Bourbon Trail Ride for 2012
- Bike Giveaway – ACTION ITEM – The board agreed that we should continue the bike give away, but that we should revisit how/when we do it. Pam and Christian, Jeff and Dwayne agreed to work as an ad hoc committee to look at options and to make recommendations to the board about possible revisions to the bike give away. Jeff will chair the group.
Discussion Leader: Jamie Bagley
RETREAT GOAL: Identify questions/issues to send back to the membership committee for discussion and recommendation.
Discussion: Jamie asked if the BCC should offer an option for multi-year or lifetime memberships? She noted that longer term memberships would be administratively easier and may aid in retention. It was noted that dues comprise a small amount of overall club revenues.
Jamie noted that any variations in the membership structure cannot be accommodated with the current computer system. Jamie would also like to explore the possibility of rolling memberships, which also are not possible unless we upgrade the membership system.
Joint memberships – It was generally agreed that the BCC should not pursue joint memberships with any other groups at this time.
Recruitment – Jamie asked for input about what the membership committee can do to recruit and retain members in addition to what the committee already does. Suggestions include the following:
- Improving the visibility of the club in the community;
- Reach out to schools, University of Kentucky;
- Provide more educational opportunities and bicycle safety classes in the community;
- Ask local bike shops to distribute a BCC flyer when a person purchases a new bike – Possibly get racks to hold membership applications at bike shops … ASSIGN SOMEONE TO BE RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS; and
- Develop a new brochure with application included.
Growth Philosophy – The board discussed our philosophy about club growth - How much do we want to grow? Our current rate of growth is 10% -15% per year. Do we really want to grow faster than that? On one hand, the more members we have, the more clout we have and the better we are able to influence decisions relating to cycling. We need to be careful about growth and make sure that we can accommodate growth by offering enough rides and other services to our members.
Retention – The board agreed that it is important to focus on retention and providing opportunities for our members to be more informed and involved. It was agreed that the board needs to do a better job of letting members know what they get for their membership fee. Other items of note:
- Communication is an issue – Our current membership system has limitations regarding getting e-mail messages out and we probably miss many opportunities because of this.
- Offering multi-year memberships will help retention
- Make sure ride leaders have membership applications
- Add more events with a social component or more social events for members.
Discussion Leader: Mike Bagley
RETREAT GOAL: Identify questions and topics to refer back to the rides committee for discussion and recommendation.
- Race team - The club will not support a race team this year.
- Mileage tracking –
- Currently, winter miles don’t count toward tracking. This will be discussed by the rides committee and may be changed.
- The IT group will be asked to look at a better more usable way for tracking mileage
- Types of rides – Children’s rides, more Saturday ride, more out of town rides, women’s rides – To offer a wider variety of rides, additional ride leaders need to be recruited.
- GPS/Map Libraries – The rides committee is currently researching how to improve maps and what software to use. The rides committee will coordinate with the IT committee about how to develop and make available a map library.
- Ride Leader Administration – There is currently an area for ride leaders on the website. Forms are also available on the website. Ride leader training is currently scheduled for March 12.
- Ride descriptions – Try to provide more information about rides including terrain, regrouping, etc
Identification of Committees for 2011:
Topic will be further discussed at the March board meeting.
- IT - Phil to chair. Committee members: Mike, Jamie, Terio, Griff, Nedim
- Education/Philanthropy/Advocacy –Pam will continue to chair (unless someone else wants to)
- Membership/Retention – Jamie to chair
- Social – Need a liaison and a chair
- Rides – Mike to chair
- Merchandising – Bill to Chair
- RRR – Committee – Patrick to Chair, Pam, Terio and Mike have offered to help
- Horsey Hundred – Don Leach to chair
- Short term committees –
- Bike Giveaway – Jeff to chair, Pam, Christian and Dwayne have agreed to serve
- Fall Charity Ride – Bill to Chair. Pam has offered to help
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