New member’s experience, Heather Ransom

New member’s experience, Heather Ransom

September 20, 2015 8:11 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Looking back on the last six months, I have had an incredible journey with JCI London. I joined following the January Kick Off event at London Chamber of Commerce and haven’t looked back. I’ve made so many new friends from all across Europe and even had the opportunity to meet the JCI World President.

I work in the charity sector where it is hard to access training and professional development. Walking into my first event, the Public Speaking Club, I found a supportive environment within which to improve my presentation skills and really enjoyed the improvised speech session. Attending the JCI European Conference in June, I took advantage of all the training on offer and completed official JCI courses (Achieve and Admin) to support me to make the most of my JCI experience and also those which would support my career development as a policy and public affairs manager. For instance, how to run effective meetings and to manage projects.

A few weeks after becoming a JCI member, I joined the training team. I have since organised and coordinated a range of events, including General Election debates and leadership training. I am now Deputy Training Director and currently reflecting on how I would like to contribute to the Council Team in 2016.

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The international opportunities have been a highlight for me. The European Capitals Meeting in Copenhagen was a 3 day event in April for members from capital cities in Europe to network and share good practice. I found that it was a particularly good event for new members – with less than 100 members attending I had the chance to talk to everyone during the weekend. I came away from the business day reflecting on the advice offered from leaders from banking, voluntary sector and tourism. ‘The expert in everything was once a beginner’ is a call for us to go beyond our comfort zone and try new things. The social events – sightseeing in the city and a fairy tales dinner – were memorable too.

I was delighted to win the First Timers Award for JCI London at the European Conference in June. Here the days were spent taking training courses, watching the General Assembly, and cheering on the UK team in the debating and public speaking competitions. In the evenings, there were amazing parties and an opportunity to network with members from Scotland, Ireland and Malta – the BANZI group. An awards evening and closing night party took place on the last night of the conference. It offered members from across Europe the chance to celebrate projects and initiatives that have created positive change, with JCI UK winning a total of 7 awards.

I’m really looking forward to my next six months with JCI London. If you’re thinking of becoming a member, come along to one of our events to find out more.  


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