Sometimes we don't really appreciate how well run an established organization can be until we work with a newly formed one. For example, I sit on the Finance Committee of BCNet, and have been part of the committee for several years. Over the years there have been several opportunities to improve the process and the reporting. Although I would characterize these changes as minor tweaks to a well oiled machine, I always thought we had lots of room for improvement.
In contrast, the Canadian University Council of CIOs (CUCCIO) is a developing organization. I'm on the Finance Committee for this organization too. Although CUCCIO's finances are in good shape, I've discovered we have a long way to go before it is running anywhere nearly as smooth as BCNet. The irony is that I don't think I ever really appreciated the BCNet committee until I started working on the CUCCIO finances. Trying to model a new organization on an existing one certainly makes one appreciate the effort and complexity of the existing model.
I'm happy to be able to apply a number of lessons from BCNet to CUCCIO, and just as importantly, I'm humbled by the success of the BCNet process. A double win!