If you live and work in a particular community, it’s not easy to take the time to learn much more than what’s in your neighborhood or place of business.
That’s why TEAM South was created more than 10 years ago – to give professional leaders in the South Oklahoma City area a chance to build their awareness of the community. Participants will learn about a variety of topics, including nonprofits, health care, the aerospace market and the local government.
“There are many great details and unique qualities in this region,” said Liz Cromwell, program development director for the South Oklahoma City Chamber, which organizes TEAM South each year. “Sometimes you have to stop and look around to see what’s right in front of you.”
Members of TEAM South are selected after completing an application and demonstrating an interest in the community. The TEAM South Committee selects a diverse group of professionals, ranging from CEOs to front-line employees, for the seven-month program.
During this program, which meets one full day per month from October through April, participants get an up-close view of what the community has to offer.
“Through this program, I was introduced to so many people in the community that helped me grow as a professional, improve service to my customers and identify new business partners,” said Kelly Sitzman, branch manager of Norman Public Library East. “This program fosters the growth of South Oklahoma city businesses/nonprofits regardless of industry, and allows time to create new and strengthen existing relationships in a unique way.”
The TEAM South development program concludes on a high note with a focus on government and a visit to the Oklahoma Supreme Court. A Supreme Court justice conducts the TEAM’s graduation ceremony.
Sitzman said she expanded her personal and professional network because of TEAM South. She’s not alone.
“More than anything, it’s a lot of fun,” Cromwell said. “Everybody has a great time. It always makes me happy to hear about classmates from a couple years ago doing business together, getting together socially. It shows that we’re doing something right, that those relationships are long lasting, whether business or personal.”