Letter from the President Cassie Krejci, Ph.D., BCE
Throughout my years with Pi Chi Omega, I’ve gained so much knowledge about our members, but mostly I love learning about the non-technical details that make up a person’s personality. I’ve also shared quite a bit about myself, but I usually leave one thing out. It’s not my most flattering quality, but we’re all friends now, so I feel like I can share in confidence.
Are you ready?
I’m a procrastinator. I’m an entomologist and a procrastinator. A runner and a procrastinator. I am a Type A, Enneagram 1 procrastinator. I will absolutely never miss a deadline, but believe me, I struggle to check things off the ol’ to-do list way ahead of that deadline. Say I have a presentation build, or – I don’t know – maybe a President’s Address to write – if you ask to see it ahead of the due date, I’ll probably be inviting you to a “brainstorming” session rather than a final review.
Starting new things is daunting; so much so that it can look like a procrastination quality. When I took over the presidency from Shep at PestWorld 2021, I felt an immense amount of excitement, followed by the inward question of, “how am I going to do this justice?” I have watched many great president’s ahead of me serve Pi Chi Omega with a ton of class and a ton of positive influence on this industry. Much like learning to skateboard by watching Tony Hawk videos, the potential is there, but where to place that first step can be intimidating.
As I start my tenure as President of Pi Chi Omega, I realize that just as I was surrounded by great people as a board member, I am also surrounded by those same supportive members as a leader. I am working with our committees, the Board, and the Executive Director team to outline those goals and take our first steps.
As a member of Pi Chi Omega, we rely on you to help us reach those goals. My call to action to you today is to consider the growth you want to see in Pi Chi Omega and the pest management industry. Is it more members? Is it more school-aged children interested in pest control? Is it more diversity in your organization? Once you have the idea of this growth, it’s easy to get bogged down with the idea that you are only one person, or that the idea isn’t well developed. Being bogged down with grand ideas can turn to procrastination of action. However, the Board and I want to hear your idea.
When I asked you to consider the growth you want to see in our industry, it’s likely you thought of a beauty-queen answer similar to the ones I gave as examples. There’s nothing wrong with wanting world peace, but much like my yearly goal to “Quit Procrastinating”, it can seem so grandiose that the first step seems hard to come by. Like the first word to a bi-monthly President’s Address, the first step to your plan is easier to identify with a path or an outline on how you can reach that goal. It’s your steps to attainment: they will change, and they may feel like speedbumps, but they keep you from hitting the intimidating roadblock that can come with big aspirations.
If you have a piece of paper, go ahead, and write this down: 1 day, 1 week, 1 month.
That’s it. I don’t you going any farther than that. Mentally or physically write the answer this question at the top of your page: What is the growth you want to see in Pi Chi Omega and the pest management industry? What love can you pour into it? Our members have so many talents – maybe they’re outside of pest control. How can you benefit your community, your company, or your industry with those talents?
I did not make it through school without the support of my academic coaches and mentors in pest management. I did not join the Pi Chi Omega Board of Directors without people, specifically Judy Black, Kim Kelley-Tunis, & Marie Knox, encouraging me in a pivotal moment to stand up and share my ideas for the organization. We stand on the shoulders of those who came before us. For as much as I love the pest management industry, it’s our responsibility to continue the selflessness and foster the generations of pest management professionals and Pi Chi Omega members to come next. Through our growth goals and the 1 day, 1 week, 1-month steps, we can keep making progress & leave a legacy of growth for the future of Pi Chi Omega & I hope that’s as exciting to you as it is for me.
P.S. – I did this exercise as I wrote. In one day, I will reach out to someone in our industry via email and encourage them to join. In one week, I will share a post to LinkedIn that talks about my experiences with Pi Chi Omega. And finally, over the next month, I will meet with our Board to strategize for increasing our yearly scholarships.