Extraordinary by Association

Houston Society of Association Executives  rocks!

Q: Whaddya get when you mix festive folks, fab location, yummy food and a funny piano- playing speaker? A: The HSAE December meeting = fun on a stick! View photos at Mark Hiebert Photography: http://www.pixoasis.com/va.php?hash=7b44f95cf4c7ecc7ba4ec1415719ee16

We talked about how to help you and your association be extraordinary in today’s economy:

1.  Have a great attitude. Be a helpful, humble, likable team member, stay teachable and learn new ways of working to keep up with changing times. No one likes an arrogant sour puss!

2.  Show value. ROI is now ROT (return on time). Are your meetings attracting & retaining new members? Try a breakfast meeting if you want more Gen X & Gen Y members. To maximize member engagement try new meeting  formats i.e. Open Spaces, Panel Discussion. Have members blog about association benefits – enthusiasm is contagious!

3.  Positive communications. You can’t yell at volunteers. Communicate clearly with courtesy and respect and avoid pointing fingers (remember Lindsay Lohan?)  One of the best ways to get people to cooperate is through the power of appreciation. Marcus Buckingham, guru of today’s business management, says people join organizations but they leave people.  #1 reason: They feel unrecognized.

4.  Technology. Consider updating your website to an interactive site like Ning. Take a look at the National Speakers Association Houston chapter http://www.nsahouston.org and see how it maximizes member engagement by posting blogs, discussions, ideas and different groups in addition to videos and photos.  Way cool!

FYI: Consider NSA-Houston  as your local resource for a variety of  professional speakers on a wide range of topics for  association meetings.  You can save big $$$ on travel expenses!

We ended the December meeting on a couple of high notes (pun intended):  a)  The economy is on the upswing – evidence of which I’ve personally seen in the number of corporations spending money on holiday music this year compared to 2009; b)  http://www.hsae.org has a new board that is pumped for success; c) Lady Gaga will shock us again in 2011 with a dress to top her bacon outfit.

The meeting ended with all 50 attendees singing along to Jingle Bell Rock with me on the piano keyboard. They rocked, I ruled.

Meetings that don’t engage audiences are SO yesterday! Extraordinary is the new norm.


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