Transition is a critical event for ensuring that ELSA knowledge continues on to the new boards, and is an opportunity for the incoming officers to learn all the tips and tricks from their predecessors which will help them understand their responsibilities and execute them the best they can. Every year ELSA UK has successful one-to-one transitions, but this year we decided to make a twist – a transition weekend.
The weekend started with the incoming and outgoing boards meeting at Queen Mary University of London. We spent two days at the university, working tirelessly and trying our best to absorb all the knowledge that outgoing National Board had to share with us. This included various kinds of information relevant for each officer and the responsibilities and tasks that we will encounter during our year on the National Board. We have discussed the work of the outgoing National Board along with the issues that have occurred, in order to learn from their experiences and to be ready if we find ourselves in similar positions during our term. We further discussed the ELSA UK website and decided on things that we would like to change, as well as some other matters of the ELSA UK network.
As this was the first time that the whole incoming board got the opportunity to get together, we used it to plan our year and create the end goals which will keep us motivated and focused throughout the term. This consisted of creating our OYOPs (One Year Operational Plans), both general, and specific to each officer, as well as putting together our Strategic Goals.
OYOPs are essential for the work of any ELSA officer because they show what the officer wishes to achieve by the end of their term – the way in which an officer will contribute to ELSA. However, another essential part are general OYOPs. They outline the vision our National Board has for ELSA UK a year from now. Some of the highlights of our general OYOP include creating the ELSA UK Alumni Network to facilitate cooperation between current ELSA members and the ELSA alumni. Further, we wish to establish the basis for creating ELSA Officers’ handbook which will contain all the knowledge that ELSA UK officers should have on how to deal with the issues specific to ELSA UK due to its location, demographic picture, UK firms’ behaviour, etc.
Strategic Goals are another essential part of any ELSA National Group as they outline where ELSA UK should be in few years’ time. We have established that ELSA UK, in 5 years’ time, should have a fully functioning Alumni network, Officers’ Handbook that will assist new local groups and the board during the transition, the flagship project of ELSA UK as a yearly event and finally, in 5 years ELSA UK should finally have charitable status to give us legal standing. We will be presenting the Strategic Goals at NCM Bristol in November, and hope to have them voted in by the Council.
After all the hard work that we did, we proceeded to a house in East London where we all spent the night and used that time for some team building. As ELSA UK’s National Board consists of students which are spread around the UK, and sometimes wider, it is important that we use all the opportunities where we all come together to their full potential. This was the perfect opportunity for us to get to know each other better, to become closer as friends and to create a great board dynamic which will follow us into a new and successful term that awaits.
The transition weekend was a great success – we were serious, we were laughing, and most importantly, we were getting closer as a strong board consisting of enthusiastic, capable and motivated individuals. We are very excited to start our term as the National Board of ELSA UK 2018/2019, and if this transition was any kind of indication for our term to come, we are surely going to have a fun and successful year, making ELSA UK even better than before.
Stela Negran is an LLM candidate at Queen Mary University of London. She has been involved with ELSA since her first year of undergraduate studies, and will serve as the President of ELSA UK for the 2018/2019 term. She loves travelling and meeting people from different countries, which is why she loves ELSA.