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SIM Leadership Spotlight October 2013

"Leadership Spotlight" includes interviews with Chapter Presidents, SIM Board members, Management Council members and other SIM leaders.  "Leadership Spotlight" will not only highlight SIM’s leadership and chapters,  but it will offer insight from our leaders on topics, treads and issues facing the Society, our chapters and the IT industry.


 An archive of interviews will be found HERE.

October 2013  
Name: Terry Janis
SIM Role:  SIM Houston Chapter President


1. Please provide a brief overview of the SIM Houston chapter.

SIM Houston was established in 1989.  During 2009/10, our local membership fell to approximately 28 members.  Over the past three years, with considerable effort and hard work by many of the members, the Houston chapter has grown to 132 with anticipation of reaching 150 by year end.  We have established several events including our monthly meetings, socials and this year being able to sponsor scholarships to IT students here in the Houston area.  

The Houston chapter partners with Genesys Works, AITP, ITT Technical Institute, and sponsors local students with scholarships. Genesys Works is a 501c3 organization that enables inner-city high school students to intern within our various local companies while preparing for post high school education.  Through our partnership, Genesys Works trains, monitors and employs 200 students placed within our local organizations and ensures that each of these students enroll in a major university or college.  During the next several months, the Houston Chapter is sponsoring our inaugural sporting clays event and our inaugural golf tournament to support our scholarship funds for these and other students majoring in technology sciences.   


2. What are/were your goals for your term as the President of the SIM Houston chapter?
With membership hitting an all-time low, the BODs alongside our membership, focused on enhancing the quality of our monthly speakers/programs thereby raising the caliber of our events.  By doing so, we were able to attract the large cap company CIOs and his/her direct reports.  

By capturing the large cap CIO and his/her direct reports, we then were able to utilize those talents and experiences in enhancing membership.  We opened all BODs meetings to the membership (general public) and increased participation at meetings from five to +/- 22 each meeting.  This enthusiasm turned into our group retaining last year’s membership at a 99% level and increased our overall membership by 181% from the previous year. 


Current strategies have included petitioning and acquiring the 2014 SIMI Leadership Summit for April next year.  Our chapter also is establishing our inaugural sporting clays (October) event and golf tournament to be held during the Leadership Summit (April 2014) at one of Houston’s premier golf courses.  


3. What are the hottest trends in the IT industry? 
Everyone touches on mobile applications and smart devices, cloud computing/storage and IT analytics with Big Data.  However, Houston seriously focuses on leadership and in our responsibilities to create additional leaders within our organizations transitioning to that next generation that will take our chapter and our companies to the next level.  Succession planning, mentoring and coaching are strongly a part of our organization on an annual basis.  Secondarily, our chapter focuses on a Gartner analyst to annually bring in new technologies, trends and ways of looking at business/opportunities. 

4. What challenges is your chapter currently facing?
Our future challenges would be to take the Houston chapter to a membership of 250 while ensuring retention of existing members remains high.  The chapter will be working on building its first CIO Executive Summit to include a CIO of the year award and potentially partnering with a third-party to continue these efforts on an annual basis.  With Houston being the fourth largest city in the United States, it should be highly likely to accomplish these goals.  

5. What is the one piece of advice you will give to the next President of the SIM Houston chapter?

The next BODs will include an additional four officer positions above previous years.  This will also include multiple active committees that will aid in enhancing the organization’s overall strategy and enable the group to be known for its outstanding leadership in the field of technology and its charitable contributions to the community.


This new group of leaders will focus on SIMI’s strategic plan, develop the local strategic plan and execute tactically to heighten and improve upon previous accomplishments.  Finally, these newly elected BODs will work toward mentoring and transitioning to the next generation of leaders.  


An archive of interviews will be found HERE.


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