Eric Lanke

Trade Associations Really Have Organizational Memberships

Eric Lanke

I have to take issue with Amanda Kaiser of the Smooth the Path blog, who said in a recent post that trade associations don't really have organizational memberships. Your key contact member understands that some of their colleagues at their organization can be members.

The Idea Swap

Eric Lanke

I attended an educational conference last week and a wonderful thing happened to me there. I got a new idea. I don't know yet if it's a good idea or a bad idea. Maybe you can tell me. But that's not the point.

Step Four: Discussing the Strategic Implications, Part 5

Eric Lanke

Three weeks ago, in Step Four: Discussing the Strategic Implications, Part 4 , I continued a description of a Scenario Planning exercise my Board chair and I decided to conduct at our two most recently completed Board meetings.

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The Three Things That Matter in Our Performance Evaluations

Eric Lanke

I don't know when was the last time I've written about performance evaluations on this blog -- or indeed if I have ever written about performance evaluations on this blog before -- but they've been on my mind this week.

Going Where There Are No Podiums

Eric Lanke

Not too long ago I wrote a post about Getting Out From Behind the Podium when giving a talk at my association's Annual Conference.

Step Four: Discussing the Strategic Implications, Part 3

Eric Lanke

Four weeks ago, in Step Four: Discussing the Strategic Implications, Part 2 , I continued a description of a Scenario Planning exercise my Board chair and I decided to conduct at our most recently completed Board meeting.

Adopting the Point of View of Your Members

Eric Lanke

Kudos to Amanda Kaiser and her Smooth the Path blog for her post, " Our Point of View is Not Our Members’ Point of View." In it, she reminds all of us association staff that what we think about the value of our membership benefits is often not what our members think of it.

Who Is In and Who Is Out of Your Association?

Eric Lanke

I participated in a SURGE Spring 2018 session on co-creation. Don't know what SURGE Spring 2018 is? It's an online, virtual conference put on by Association Success. Sessions were recorded and were broadcast May 2-4, 2018.

Design Constraints Make Innovation Happen

Eric Lanke

I participated in a SURGE Spring 2018 session on co-creation. Don't know what SURGE Spring 2018 is? It's an online, virtual conference put on by Association Success. Sessions have been recorded and are being posted this week (May 2-4, 2018). Mine will be posted on May 4. Go here for more info.

Step Four: Discussing the Strategic Implications, Part 2

Eric Lanke

Two weeks ago, in Step Four: Discussing the Strategic Implications , I continued a description of a Scenario Planning exercise my Board chair and I decided to conduct at our most recently completed Board meeting.

Membership Sales Is About More Than Just Increasing Membership Numbers

Eric Lanke

We focus a lot on membership sales in my association. This year perhaps more than at any time in recent memory because we have identified increasing our membership numbers as our Wildly Important Goal for the year.

What Goes Around Comes Around

Eric Lanke

I had another lesson in the value of networking this past week. A nearby neighbor of mine is looking to make a job change.

Step Three: Writing Snapshots for Each Scenario, Part 2

Eric Lanke

Two weeks ago, in Step Three: Writing Snapshots for Each Scenario , I continued a description of a Scenario Planning exercise my Board chair and I decided to conduct at our most recently completed Board meeting.

We Feed Our Own Whirlwinds

Eric Lanke

We had Chris McChesney speak at my association's Annual Conference a few weeks back. If you don't know who that is, he's one of the authors of The Four Disciplines of Execution , also know as 4DX.

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You Must Be Staff Driven

Eric Lanke

Last week I wrote about a presentation I would be giving at one of my association's major conferences -- a presentation on the work product of one of our technical committees.

Getting Out From Behind the Podium

Eric Lanke

My association's Annual Conference was last week, and among the things that means for me is making a presentation to the assembled membership on what the association has been doing over the past year. It's not the first time I've done this.

Step Two: Creating Scenarios Based on Megatrends, Part 2

Eric Lanke

Two weeks ago, in Step Two: Creating Scenarios Based on Megatrends , I continued a description of a Scenario Planning exercise my Board chair and I decided to conduct at our just completed Board meeting.

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Step Two: Creating Scenarios Based on Megatrends

Eric Lanke

Two weeks ago, in Step One: Identifying the Megatrends , I continued a description of a Scenario Planning exercise my Board chair and I decided to conduct at our upcoming Board meeting.

Oranges Are More Important Than Apples

Eric Lanke

Lately, I've been spending more time than usual on my association's financial operations.

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Step One: Identifying the Megatrends

Eric Lanke

A few weeks ago, in Letting the Future Guide the Present , I provided some background for a Scenario Planning exercise my Board chair and I decided to conduct at our upcoming Board meeting.

80% Is Good Enough

Eric Lanke

I used to blog a lot about innovation in the association environment. I used to think a lot about the subject, I helped write a white paper on the subject, helped launch a regional conference focused on it, and have tried to move my association on to a more innovative footing.

The Joy of Membership Interview

Eric Lanke

I was recently interviewed by Joy Duling of The Joy of Membership blog, for The Movement Summit , an online event she is creating and hosting, which will be happening live next week, November 6-10, 2017.

The Importance of Making Commitments

Eric Lanke

It's been a while since I wrote about my association's on-going experiment with 4DX -- The Four Disciplines of Execution.

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When Action Items Aren't Action Items

Eric Lanke

Last week I wrote about a message my Board chair and I had crafted to help frame the discussion at our recent Board meeting.

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Letting the Future Guide the Present

Eric Lanke

I had a good discussion with my Board chair this week. We're looking ahead to our next Board meeting and it's time to start framing an agenda for the discussions that will take place there.

Working Committees Have Plenty To Do

Eric Lanke

We're looking ahead to another calendar year in our association, and as part of that look forward we are setting a year-long course for some of our working committees. Working Committee is the term my association uses for what others might call Program Committees.

I Don't Know How To Do That

Eric Lanke

I was talking to a friend last night about one of the newest education programs in my association. He's a friend, but he's not in the association business, and I often find his viewpoint as an outsider to my world refreshing.

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It Takes Resources

Eric Lanke

Another lesson for me this week that demonstrates how a strategy without the resources to support it is a recipe for failure. We sometimes deceive ourselves in the association business.

Automation Is Not Always the Answer

Eric Lanke

I had an interesting conversation this week with a colleague on the subject of membership engagement tracking. It's not something that every association does, evidently, but it is something that my association does.

Peer Surveys Protect the Status Quo

Eric Lanke

Like many association professionals, I suspect, I belong to a number of associations myself. One of those associations -- comprised primarily of the staff executives of associations that look and behave like mine -- recently conducted a survey of its membership.

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Getting New Voices Heard at the Board Table

Eric Lanke

The Board of my association uses a structure we call Strategic Task Forces. I think I've written about them before on this blog. They are task forces of the Board, but we invite a number of non-Board members to serve on them as well.

Associations Are Non-Profits for a Reason

Eric Lanke

There is a clear and important reason that associations are organized as non-profit organizations, and it isn't so they can get out of paying taxes. My musings in this regard were inspired by this post by Anna Caraveli on The Demand Networks blog.

When Governance Means Governance

Eric Lanke

I'm gearing up for another Board meeting this week. That means, among other things, that I've been in communication with our Board chair about necessary agenda items and things that we would like the Board to achieve by the conclusion of the meeting.

Board Succession Quiz

Eric Lanke

As I said a few weeks ago, another association has invited me to speak at their Annual Leadership Conference on the subject of high-functioning association Boards. I'm going to hit four subjects during my presentation: Board selection , Board discussions , Board decisions , and Board succession.

Board Decisions Quiz

Eric Lanke

As I said a few weeks ago, another association has invited me to speak at their Annual Leadership Conference on the subject of high-functioning association Boards. I'm going to hit four subjects during my presentation: Board selection , Board discussions , Board decisions, and Board succession.

Part Three: Writing Snapshots for Each Scenario

Eric Lanke

Two weeks ago, in Step Two: Creating Scenarios Based on Megatrends, Part 2 , I continued a description of a Scenario Planning exercise my Board chair and I decided to conduct at our recently completed Board meeting.

Hurricanes and Asynchronous Communication

Eric Lanke

Hurricanes Harvey and Irma were on everyone's mind these last few weeks. Even if you weren't directly affected by them through mandatory evacuations, storm damage, or the tragic loss of life, the hurricanes were undoubtedly on your mind and they probably impacted the way you did your job.

Board Discussions Quiz

Eric Lanke

As I said last week, another association has invited me to speak at their Annual Leadership Conference on the subject of high-functioning association Boards. I'm going to hit four subjects during my presentation: Board selection , Board discussions, Board decisions, and Board succession.

Board Selection Quiz

Eric Lanke

Another association has invited me to speak at their Annual Leadership Conference on the subject of high-functioning association Boards. A handful of these opportunities have come my way since I started blogging, and I frankly relish them.

Moving the Goal Posts

Eric Lanke

One of the central challenges we face in our association is determining how we're going to measure success.

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