Chapter Corner

The Future of the Electrical Industry

Posted in: Features, January/February 2019

Where is the electrical industry going and who is going to take us there? Well, Independent Electrical Contractors (IEC) and the National Association of Electrical Distributors (NAED) have teamed up in identifying some of our very own emerging leaders and asking them questions about leadership and the pathway to a better future for our industry. While our sector as a whole has started to provide emerging leaders the tools to help grow and strengthen their careers and professional development opportunities. We need to take some time to better understand the potential challenges and begin to develop solutions. In collaboration with the NAED, we are developing a series of meetings with a working group of emerging leaders in both our member organizations to gain insight and understand where our industry is going and what challenges/opportunities our members face in the future. We are slated to begin in February 2019.
 
While the electrical industry has tens of thousands of leadership positions, only a small percentage are filled by emerging leaders. By definition, an emerging leader is not just defined by your age. We have learned that many factors make up characteristics belonging to an emerging leader from years of experience within certain roles to the generalization of being under 40. Through our process of engagement, we plan to clearly define an emerging leader to ensure inclusivity to all. Everyone, not just a select few, have the potential to become known as a leader. Emerging leaders recognize the power of influence without authority, position or title in their quest to become known as a leader to others.
 
During the fall of 2018, our membership and industry recognition committees launched a series of focus groups to strengthen our framework for increasing recognition of our emerging leaders and the development of a meaningful leadership capacity building opportunity for our emerging leaders. This spring, we will continue to fine tune our framework for a formalized emerging leader program set to launch in 2020. It is our ultimate
goal to create a leadership development program to cultivate future leaders for industry leadership opportunities.
 
To help emerging leaders continue their emergence, we must help them continue to develop. Our industry needs great leaders. Let’s do our part to continue to identify, help, and develop new emerging leaders! It’s not too late for you to support this work, you and/or your organization can create opportunities for learning within your company, become a mentor or participate in one of our upcoming focus groups. Get involved today and email us at emergingleaders@ieci.org.
 
RaeShawn Crosson serves as Chief Operating Officer and is responsible for the strategic and operational leadership of IEC. She brings extensive management experience to IEC with professional expertise in strategic planning, training, investigation, change management, budget preparation, compensation, technology utilization, and communications. As a Certified Public Manager, RaeShawn is an active member of the International Public Managers Association (IPMA) and the Society of Human Resource Management.