Honoring the Promise of Membership
This post was written by Chris Larsen, with Chris Larsen Consulting Inc. Join us at Engaging Associations to see his session!
People join associations for any number of reasons, but chief among them is their belief that association membership will help advance their career, help them build their skills and capabilities as it relates to that career, and for the professional networking and business development opportunities it facilitates for them. Every stage of membership, from attraction, acquisition, engagement and retention is determined by the extent to which the association continuously reinforces those beliefs.
Most association leaders will say they are already doing these things, but too frequently they have difficulty backing up that opinion with metrics. It’s also easier to interpret the obligation to the member narrowly, defining the member’s need in terms that are more manageable for the association, or to delegate responsibility for engagement to volunteers who may or may not have the training and supervision to ensure that the end goal of engagement is attained. The temptation is to rely too much on trust and anecdotal evidence, rather than measurement, that member services are being delivered efficiently and effectively.
Delivering on the promise that membership in your association will justify the member’s decision to join in the first place and to maintain their membership isn’t rocket science, but it is work.
I’ll be presenting at the Engaging Associations Forum in Ottawa, July 17 – 19, 2019. In my session on Friday morning, I’ll be discussing the key drivers of engagement in more detail, how to measure engagement, how to recognize warning signs and best practices and member programs to help you to maintain a higher level of member engagement throughout the membership lifecycle.
Hope to see you there.