Greetings! My apologies for my silence on the blog posts, but as you might understand, the past couple of months have been extremely busy! I've spent my time getting up to speed on all things "IGDA," planning our presence at GDC, dealing with media requests - the list goes ever on and on.
I stepped into this role as your Executive Director knowing what needs to be done, having a vision to get there, and knowing I am prepared to meet the challenges head-on. However, you already heard enough about me and my goals in my last blog post, so let's talk about YOU - starting with this question: What are YOU prepared to do?
Most IGDA members realize that our organization exists, thrives, and evolves on the basis of one sustainable energy source: volunteers! That’s right – pretty much everything that happens in the world of the IGDA is the result of countless hours of dedication, sacrifice, sweat, challenge, and triumph from the ranks of your fellow members. They contribute in such a wide variety of ways, from event planning to volunteer coordination, from managing chapters to leading SIGs, from public outreach and speaking to vocal advocacy.
Where do you fit into the great cloud of activity happening around you – in your local area, in your functional specialty (writing, producing, designing, etc.) and in the global picture? If you’re not involved, perhaps now is the time to consider an area where your skills, experience, knowledge and talent can contribute to our great collaboration? One myth of being an IGDA volunteer is that it will consume all your free time, but the reality is that many of our volunteers contribute whenever and wherever they can. For some that’s several hours a week, for others it’s a few hours a month (or even less). But their willingness to help and their ability to follow through is what’s so critical, and what has made the IGDA successful.
So ask yourself: What does the IGDA mean to me? What do I want the IGDA to be?
If it’s not the organization you want it to be, consider what you’re prepared to do to help us get there.
The bottom line is that as a volunteer organization, members shouldn’t feel that they have to wait around for something to happen. Yes, your leadership has all kinds of ideas and we’re working hard to implement various initiatives, but these don’t prevent any member from taking their normal">own initiative. And ultimately, many of these ideas will depend once again on the power of volunteers. So if you feel something is missing, that something needs to be done, or you have a passion for a project you feel could benefit the IGDA, then I encourage you to be bold and make it so. If you want to bounce an idea off me before jumping in completely, always feel free to email me and/or contact me during office hours and let’s discuss.
In my next blog post, I’m going to be even more specific about areas where members can contribute, especially at the Chapter and SIG level, but here are few things you can do right now:
- Make sure that your IGDA membership is current! If it is, and you can afford it, consider helping a colleague or student to become a member.
- Check with your local Chapter and consider going to their next meeting. If you can’t make it, contact the Coordinator and learn about alternative meet-ups, etc. If you don’t have a local chapter, now might be the time to consider creating one!
- Find out what’s happening in the SIG related to your functional specialty. If the SIG seems dormant, investigate what it could take to revive it. SIGs are a key resource for the IGDA, as the repositories of our collective game development knowledge. White papers, books, events and a host of other great activities have been the result of our SIGs.
- VOTE! The Board of Directors election will take place 4-18 March. Choosing your board leadership is one of the most important actions as an IGDA member as it influences our direction as an organization. Stand up and be counted – please vote when you receive the voting information!
There’s the old adage that "You are what you eat”, and that concept applies to the IGDA as well. This organization is the result of thousands of amazing people like you who are passionate about their game development craft, but also fervent in their desire to build community and share. So revising that saying for the IGDA, the simple reality is this: "We are what you do.”
For those attending GDC, I’m very much looking forward to meeting you!