SIM is a not-for-profit association of key information technology leaders dedicated to
Knowledge sharing among its membership,
Serving as the voice of the IT leader on key issues,
Developing future IT leaders, and
Giving back to the communities in which we operate.
The professional network our members have established over the years is a result of relationships based upon trust, openness, and mutual respect. Ever since it’s founding in 1969, SIM has taken great pride in building decorum for knowledge sharing and participation that is unencumbered by commercial bias.
SIM believes that IT leadership comes from many disciplines, including practitioners, academics, consultants, and vendors. As such, the SIM membership criteria allows for both consumers as well as providers of IT products and services. Membership acceptance is based upon the candidate’s impact upon and contribution to professional practices that advance the business value of Information Technology in the organizations we serve. This open door to a diverse set of IT leaders requires a quid pro quo on the part of all participants to preserve the decorum mentioned above, rather than serving as a platform for individual or organizational commercial gain.
SIM understands the value of networking to build professional and personal relationships. We expect our members and affiliates to be proud of their personal and company’s accomplishments and to share valuable experiences and insight. Promotion of products and services, whether or not in the IT marketplace, is a natural occurrence in established personal relationships among professional colleagues. This Code of Conduct is intended to clarify when behaviors cross the line of what is in the best interest of the membership of our Society as a whole.
The Code serves as a guideline subject to broad and responsible interpretation by SIM officers. It is supplemented by SIM policies and practices that are written to be more specific in certain areas. Failure to abide by these codes of conduct will normally result in a warning and could lead to dismissal from participation in SIM in accordance with Chapter and SIM International by-laws. This Code of Conduct will be reviewed annually by the SIM Leadership to evaluate relevance to actual experiences and to highlight areas needing further clarification.
Lists of SIM members, chapter meeting attendees, conference attendees, or other similar documents published by SIM may not be used for the purposes of broadcast or cold call solicitation without the written consent of the appropriate SIM Chapter or International officers. Sales and marketing brochures may not be distributed at any SIM event without the written permission from the SIM leaders in charge of that event. Such promotional materials can discreetly be given to individuals attending the event upon request of the receiver.
No one, belonging to or affiliated with SIM, may use the SIM logo, or other means of identifying the SIM brand, in any documentation without the written consent of the appropriate Chapter or SIM International officers.
No one except those who were past or current full SIM members in good standing may reference their past or current SIM membership in documents such as resumes, biographies, or company profiles.
SIM actively promotes the sharing of ideas and intellectual capital among its membership. We encourage this exchange by publishing papers and reports submitted by members and partners; forming working and special interest groups to exchange information and best practices; and enabling SIM web sites to serve as document repositories on topics of interest.
When such activities are contemplated, the following principles must be observed:
The focus of such activities must be primarily intellectual and not commercial. Any reference to products and services offered by the author or participant must be incidental to the focus of the document or activity. All activities are expected to be highly professional and objective in tone and content.
Initial availability of the offering should be made through chapters or SIM HQ who will only communicate offerings that meet these guidelines. Once a member has opted to receive a document or participate in an activity, future communications with that member regarding the document or activity are appropriate.
Authors and discussion group leaders are encouraged to submit all documents and group activity reports to the SIMnet website where they will be placed in a repository and made available to all members as part of SIM’s intellectual capital.
The following outlines the expected behavior of the various constituencies involved in or associated with SIM:
Members are expected to participate in SIM activities for the purpose of knowledge sharing and networking, rather than for selling. SIM members who feel they have been sold to without their consent have the right to request the seller to stop and can report such behaviors to the appropriate Chapter or SIM International board members.
SIM encourages members to invite guests to many events. It is a valuable recruiting and promotional method. Prospective members, those in a position to promote SIM, such as the press or dignitaries, and social guests are normally welcome. Guests should not be invited for the purpose of selling to other SIM members.
SIM members-in-transition are encouraged to use the network they have established with their fellow members to help them in career counseling and job search. Many chapters have specific programs to help members-in-transition.
Members in doubt about how to handle a specific situation should seek Board advice, rather than taking matters into their own hands.
SIM leaders, either elected or appointed, have the additional responsibility to manage SIM activities for the good of the Society as a whole, rather than any individual or organizational gain. This should be the foremost criteria when conducting SIM business such as event planning, topic and speaker selection, communications to members, and selection of vendor partners/sponsors.
From time to time, SIM will seek sponsors of programs and events to help defer costs. SIM is appreciative of the sponsor’s willingness to devote resources and understands its obligation to give the sponsor appropriate exposure to the membership in accordance with established agreements. SIM members are encouraged to show their appreciation to SIM sponsors by taking an active interest in products and services that may be of use to them. For the most part, SIM establishes a sponsorship model that is based upon non-intrusive marketing. This gives the SIM member the choice to visit booths, pick up promotional materials, and interface with sponsors in a way that best suits their needs. SIM provides lists of conference attendees with only postal addresses to selected sponsors and, from time to time, sells the SIM mailing list to sponsors for specifically approved postal mailings through bonded third-party providers. All signage, advertising, and formal promotions are expected to be in good professional taste and subject to SIM approval.
SIM International and some Chapters have special offerings for selected product and service providers. The SIM International offering is called the SIM Partner Program. It is reserved for organizations that would like to establish a closer and broader relationship with SIM by joining this program for an annual fee. SIM limits participation in this program and is careful to select reputable partners that provide intellectual value on topics of interest to our membership and show they can cooperate in the demeanor expected in this Code of Conduct. They are afforded special privileges because of this unique partnership and do have access to our members by sponsoring Webcasts, publishing papers on our website, and providing speakers for our local and national events. SIM values these partnerships not just because of their financial contribution, but more importantly due to their intellectual contribution.
Effective speakers are critical to the success of SIM’s program offerings. SIM genuinely appreciates the willingness of experts to share their insights and experiences in a positive, open way. Speakers are expected to provide content of primary value to the audience rather than the presenter’s organization. This applies to all speakers who volunteer their time, and are paid a fee or honorarium or pay SIM for a speaking slot.
Speakers are welcome to proudly discuss accomplishments of themselves and their organizations, as long as it is part of a learning message. Direct sales pitches or marketing presentations that include one-sided promotion and/or competition bashing is not appropriate, regardless of the stature of the speaker. This same demeanor and professional courtesy is expected of SIM audience members that participate in commentary or question and answer sessions.
Copies of speaker’s slides are normally made available on SIM websites or, at the speaker’s discretion, can be sent by them directly to participants who have asked for them.
Academic and Affiliations:
SIM is glad to support reputable academic and not-for-profit organizations in our field, and from time to time will sponsor workshops, working groups and discussion forums in conjunction with them. SIM does not support using these organizations as a front for personal commercial interests. SIM members wishing to promote activities of academic or not-for-profit organizations should do so through the approval of the appropriate SIM Chapter or International officers.
SIM has and will continue to reach out to other professional organizations where we mutually gain strength and synergy. This applies to vertical alliances with other IT-based professional organizations, as well as horizontal alliances with groups similar to SIM representing other key functional activities within a company.
While SIM respects the rights of these professional organizations to operate under their own codes of conduct, it is expected that members and affiliates of those organizations will operate under the SIM Code of Conduct when participating in jointly held events or in informal networking with SIM members as a result of the alliance.