Hello, my name is Cemre Süler and I am a board member at Kraket, the study association for Econometrics and Operational Research at the VU. My specific role within Kraket is that of the Secretary and the (Online) Marketing Affairs Officer. Those are two functions that have a lot of overlap, which means they are often combined together. In this article I’m going to tell you what I do in an average week and what I enjoy most within the board.
My week starts with the Board Meeting on Monday. Here the board comes together and makes all the important decisions about Kraket. In this meeting we give each other updates on what we are doing and we talk about the committees we are supervising. During this meeting I play an important role as the Secretary, because I take the minutes (notes) about the board meeting. I summarize everything that is said during the meeting, so we can refer back to it later. After the board meeting I have to check the minutes and send them to the RvC (advisory board) for them to give us advice about our decisions.
After the Board Meeting and checking the minutes, I continue to check all the emails which are sent to the association. Some examples of these are questions from members, invitations to CoBo’s or other fun parties. Most of them I answer myself, and the rest I send to the board members who have to answer the email. After the emails I do my last “boring” task, which is signing people up for the association, but for you, the next secretary, I have good news for you, I’m going to try to automate this task for next year :).
Now begins the overlap between the online marketing and the secretary: promoting the activities. This begins 3 weeks before the activity takes place, where I add this activity to the website, and make a post about it on Instagram. Then, 2 weeks before the activity, the registrations will open, this goes together with an Instagram Story and the day after a WhatsApp message in the relevant group chats. I think this part is the most fun, because I can be really creative with the posts and stories. This year I created an animation for all stories, so they look more modern, which was quite challenging but really fun.
What makes these functions exciting for me is to find the best way to promote activities. I am currently experimenting with a lot of different things. I changed the whole newsletter template. Every monday I post a weekly planning on Instagram, which I designed and animated from the ground up. There is always room for improvement and to express your own creativity within the Marketing and Secretary function. I have also learned a lot about Adobe Illustrator, Adobe After Effects and Adobe Photoshop.
Another thing I love is to automate boring tasks and make everything more efficient. To be fair, the online presence of Kraket was (and still is to a lesser extent) pretty outdated. The wiki wasn’t updated since 2016, the site was pretty chaotic and we weren’t using the newest features of all the apps we were using for promotions. Like my predecessor Denise, who started with the Kraket App which was finished at the year closure last year, I also found a lot of challenge and motivation in making Kraket’s online presence more modern. There are a lot of tasks which I automated, which should spare you a lot of tedious hours clicking and copy-pasting things, if you become the next Secretary. Again, the site, app, and socials are your playground when you become Secretary and Marketing Affairs Officer.
At the end of the day, I’m most happy when my promotion, combined with the efforts of the rest of the board and the committees, results in a fun activity with full capacity. It feels really rewarding when all the members are happy and having fun. This year I have most enjoyed the hitchhike weekend, the bowling event and the speed date event. The bowling event first had a capacity of 40 people, but after promoting the activity, there were more than 60 people who registered. This of course felt very good, and I worked very closely with the International committee to increase the capacity of this activity so everyone could participate. This was a success and more than 60 people could enjoy the bowling.
In conclusion, if you are creative, have an affinity for everything online and love to improve Kraket, you are a perfect fit for the Secretary and Online Marketing functions within Board 52. And of course, if you have any more questions for me after reading this article, you can ask me them in the Kraket room or during the Speeddate event on March 2.