Your association needs you

15 Mar

The lifeblood of any organisation stems from its members and this important aspect is live and well at PCG with a 30 strong Consultative Council (CC) elected from our membership. The CC is the advisory body that supports and informs the Board of issues raised by the membership. So, if you feel passionately about freelancing and the role of PCG, then this could certainly be for you.

In order for this tradition to continue the Consultative Council needs members like you to help PCG continue to evolve and develop.

Are you intending to vote for someone at the PCG Consultative Council (CC) elections in May? Better still, are you putting yourself forward for one of the 15 places on offer this year?

Below current CC and Board member, information security consultant Simon Gardner, shares his experiences of the role. 

PCG Board and CC member Simon Gardner

“I’ve been a member of PCG since its inception and always felt strongly about defending the rights of the freelance contractor,” says Gardner. “In the early years, I didn’t really feel confident enough to get involved other than with discussions on the internet forums. But, over time, I got increasingly interested in issues of governance and strategy and wanted to contribute more to the organisation that has served me and other freelancers so well.”

Although he missed out on his first attempt, Gardner was voted on to the CC in 2007 and has now been voted onto the PCG Board. So, given his experience, what does he think a prospective CC member should expect in terms of involvement?

“One of the first duties of the CC is to appoint a new Board of Directors,” says Gardner. “The role of the CC is then to keep the interests of the PCG membership at its heart in terms of supporting and advising the board and acting as an oversight committee for the board.

“The CC meets one day every two months. The meetings split into two with the morning meeting consisting of the CC and the Executive team and then in the afternoon there tends to be a more free-flowing, open discussion. Of course, if you want to join the CC you’ve got to be prepared to air your opinions and ideas in a constructive way. And you should have a good idea about the issues surrounding contracting – such as bad practices and regulatory issues.

“Personally, I like to speak only when I’ve got something relevant to say. If you want to be a considered contributor, then that’s fine, but you do need to contribute.”

Of course, there’s the practical issue of picking up the necessary votes in the first place. Here, being active amongst the membership or hosting a regular PCG regional meeting (RLM) can be good way of showing your commitment.

For me, it’s been about giving something back to PCG,” says Gardner. “There’s a great deal of satisfaction to be had from being involved. Contributing your thoughts and ideas and adding value to the organisation gives you a great sense of wellbeing.”

The 2012 Consultative Council election process begins with the nominations opening of Tuesday 20th March. This year, there are 15 vacant seats on the Council, so each PCG member has a maximum of 15 votes. You do not have to exercise them all, but it would be a shame to use none of them. For details of how to nominate yourself go to or visit the PCG Forums for updates on the process.


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