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Board election 2018 - Bob Crocker

Name: Bob Crocker

Region: South West

Thank you to everyone around the country who sent their support, I am sorry there is a limit to how many I can use.

I have been organising big events for Mensa for over 20 years including well attended, multi-stranded 4 day weekend in London, family friendly all day Regional Summer Parties attracting 50 to 80+ members for many years whilst I was Regional Officer, Talks, Boat trips, Karting, Horse Riding, Sailing catamaran off Turkey, French chateau in Brittany, and lots more.

However, for many years British Mensa has been slowly losing members. Current projections suggest our demise by 2060 if we persist as we are. We have not been doing enough to interest or retain our younger members, or those starting their careers or with young families. But this is not the case in overseas Mensas. It is essential that we make changes to overcome this. At the same time we must continue to build our program for all members, young and old.

As Regional Liaison Officer, I have been instrumental in setting change in motion. Not without opposition from those that resist any change, even if it means letting the society slowly die. We need fresh views to invigorate us.

The first step was to improve the way we select our Regional Officers, so more candidates are now coming forward and they are more accountable. Then to encourage more cooperation between the regions and with the board, as we cannot succeed if we are not all working together.

The next thing is to build a Young Mensa network throughout the country with multiple events for our younger members in every region. In parallel to this we need to develop a Family Mensa network to bring interest to members with families and to our junior Mensans. We would like to see more family friendly meetings throughout the country associated with a social network to provide infrastructure and guidance.

The new method of recruiting has produced far more candidates than previously in each of 3 regions. It has enabled more dynamic individuals to come forward that are keen to engage and grow, and not just carry on the same old same old. We have been able to select people that may shake us up a little, and start to address younger Mensans and those with young families and careers for whom we have been doing so little. Clearly we can’t guarantee this will always work, hence we have made the positions reviewable annually, and accountable to the Board.

Now we need to further develop Young Mensa and Family Mensa, whilst increasing what’s available for Traditional Mensa.

I am told that I take a reasonable, inclusive and level headed approach to problems, taking into account the views of the majority without being confrontational. I believe my diversified management background, including over 20 years in the commercial sector, has been a key factor in encouraging this process and moving it forwards, all  started during my first term as director. With your support I would like to have a second, final, term to finish the process, and then hand over to someone else to develop it further. If I cannot do it in 3 years I deserve to go after that, and if I have succeeded or started an effective process it will be time for fresh hands to continue it.

Meantime I am leading the team organising this year’s Annual Gathering at Plymouth, in the background of some of these photos.

Hope to see you there.

I am determined that things can be better, for everyone.