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Members: Your most important resource
By Michael J. Berens
If you're in the association business, you don't have to think twice about what is your most important asset. It's your members. And how about your most important resource? Would that be your database? Your website? Your staff? Your volunteers? They are all valuable and vital to the success of your association. As it turns out, your most important resource is, yes, your members. So why aren't associations doing more to capitalize on this resource?
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Associations are at home in the connection economy
Avectra
A few weeks ago, Seth Godin was a keynote speaker at a HubSpot conference about inbound marketing. Inbound marketing “focuses on creating quality content that pulls people toward your company and product,” says HubSpot. “By aligning the content you publish with your customer’s interests, you naturally attract inbound traffic that you can then convert, close, and delight over time.” Sounds like a member relationship, doesn’t it? In his keynote, Godin talked about the connection economy and says the industrial economy is sputtering out as we enter the connection economy. Associations are well-positioned to build a community (and market) around the four pillars of this new connection economy: coordination, trust, permission and exchange of ideas.
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CEO Recommended
Brought to you by the Fort Worth CVB
Can a co-CEO structure work?
Associations Now
History and corporate lore has made the singular CEO into America’s unofficial folk hero: Behold, one magnificent polymath who sets the vision, knows the business inside and out, rallies the troops, and, if things go sour, nobly accepts the blame. Such leaders aren’t doing it all alone, of course; they distribute responsibility among VPs. But the idea of sharing power at the top has a way of seeming structurally unsound. Putting more than one person in the corner office has a checkered history. But it may be the kind of leadership style our times increasingly demand.
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PRODUCT SHOWCASE
  Vail Valley, Your Meeting Destination

Vail Valley, home to Vail & Beaver Creek, boasts non-stop air service to Eagle County Airport, a wide selection of dining options, as well as on-mountain group activities & teambuilding. With a Vail Valley meeting, you’ll provide an experience your attendees won’t likely forget, in a naturally inspiring environment.
 


Finding radical value in core competencies
Association Subculture
If you read the news and study trends, you may already be aware that there is a great deal of change underway in the K-12 and post-secondary system in the United States. Rising college tuition costs, shrinking numbers of seats, and new technology based delivery systems are combining to create a perfect storm in the adult education world. With specialization in industries and professions moving at an ever-increasing rate, college students often arrive on the scene with skills that are already out of date. However, the coming disruptions in the educational system couldn’t come at a better time for associations. Association staff and volunteers who fully grasp these tectonic shifts in education, will be able to position themselves to create radical value in new opportunity areas that simply didn’t exist ten years ago.
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Mission possible: Finding and keeping volunteers
Event Garde
It’s the first board meeting of the year and the room is packed with enthusiastic volunteer board members. And later that month, committee members flock to your building to discuss the assignments for the year. But slowly, throughout the year, people stop coming. Projects hit roadblocks. And by the end of the year, you find it harder and harder to recruit — and keep — volunteers. Sound familiar? It may be that your volunteers are bored, says Elizabeth Engel, CEO and chief strategist for Spark Consulting, LLC.
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PRODUCT SHOWCASE
  Aren't You Meeting in Amarillo?

Amarillo has the space for your “mane” event, including over 400,000 square feet at the Amarillo Civic Center Complex, combined with over 6000 lodging rooms. Add some great grazing places and our stable staff, and you have a site that makes horse sense!
sales@visitamarillotx.com www.visitamarillotx.com
 


5 ways to make your conference calls more productive
MemberClicks
Conference calls are part of everyone’s world, but association executives probably pick up the phone more than others. Sometimes conference calls are just unavoidable, and that can get frustrating because despite everyone’s best efforts, phones are still technology and technology glitches and fails sometimes. Examples of technology glitches include, of course, dropped calls, bad reception, poor conference call center, dead batteries, etc. But there are some problems that come up with conference calls that are avoidable. Here are 5 ways to make your conference calls the most productive they’ve ever been.
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PRODUCT SHOWCASE
  The Era of AMS is Over

Introducing iMIS 20 – the industry’s only member Engagement Management System (EMS)™. One system engages your members – and your staff – anytime, anywhere, on any device. One system eliminates costly integration efforts, gathers better member intelligence, and helps you make smarter business decisions. Experience the power of one at www.imis.com/tsae.
 


What's the status of your relationship with innovation?
Harvard Business Review Blog Network
How important is innovation these days? Increasingly important, if one goes by the frequency of the word appearing during earnings calls that publicly traded companies have with investment analysts. In 2008, the word appeared 1,733 times in earnings calls for 435 large publicly traded companies. That's an average of about four mentions per company (Starbucks topped the list with 139 mentions). But just talking about innovation doesn't mean a company is really serious about it, or is approaching it in a way that has as a reasonable chance of success.
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7 personal habits every CEO should have
Inc.
Being a CEO is an incredibly lonely experience. You're constantly under pressure and unsure about whom you can trust, which leads to wasted time and riding a roller coaster of uncertainty. Battling a never-ending list of expectations, you can make this struggle worse by neglecting your health and the people important to you. It doesn't have to be this way.
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