Association Management Blog

November 1963 Through the Lens of the Internet Age

Posted by Andy Freed on 11/22/13 2:00 AM

Walk past a newsstand and you can’t escape it. The 50th Anniversary of JFK’s assassination is on the cover of every magazine from Time to People. It’s a tragedy that I still can’t get my head around. And with everyone from Tom Brokaw to Kennedy’s former aides offering perspective this week, there’s little I can add to the commentary from a historical perspective.

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Topics: Technology, Leadership, Mobile, Experience, Association Management Company

Simple Truths about Strategic Planning for Your Professional Association

Posted by Andy Freed on 11/20/13 3:32 AM

Too many professional associations function without a strategic plan. And whether they know it or not, they suffer major consequences. Without strategic planning, an organization lurches from priority to priority, depending on who has the loudest voice at the Board table; volunteers are frustrated, and critical goals go unmet.

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Topics: Operations, Starting an Association, Organizational Development, Management, Conference Planning, Membership, Association, Association Management Company

Association Board Advice: 3 Rules for Strategic Service and Less Stress

Posted by Andy Freed on 11/13/13 3:30 AM

Some would say I’m a glutton for punishment. Others would say I must have some kind of a PowerPoint fetish. A small handful think I’m trying to do something good. But whatever the motivation, the reality is the same: in addition to attending dozens of monthly association Board meetings for Virtual’s clients, when the day is done I sit on several Boards myself.

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Topics: Operations, Membership, Leadership, Experience, Association Management Company

Advice for the ages (and associations) from a political icon

Posted by Andy Freed on 11/7/13 12:05 PM

Election Day was this week in the United States. As we elect our leaders, it’s a great time to reflect on some of the folks we've had in various offices in the US. And we've had some great ones here in Boston.

One of my favorites was Tip O'Neill. Tip was the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives for ten years. But more critically, Tip was like a walking fortune cookie of good political aphorisms.

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Topics: Technology, Membership

Diffusion of Innovation: Practical Tips for Technology Councils & Standards Orgs

Posted by Andy Freed on 11/2/13 4:00 AM

In the 1960s, researcher Everett Rogers published a work called Diffusion of Innovations that aimed to explain how, why, and at what rate new ideas and technology spread through cultures. Nearly half a century later, his research is still the guiding rule across various industries—including the technology space—for predicting and driving technology adoption strategy. Since standard-setting organizations and technology-focused consortia are largely in the

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Topics: Technology, Membership, Technical Process, Association, Association Management Company

7 Deadly Sins of Professional Association Training Programs

Posted by Andy Freed on 10/30/13 5:00 AM

The world is filled with bad training programs. I see them all the time in my inbox. And based on so many flawed examples, I’ve compiled this list—the seven deadly sins of professional association training programs:

1.  They’re created by people who don’t understand education and training. There’s a reason education schools exist—teachers learn something about learning modalities and how to communicate material in a way that it can be retained. Many association training programs are just,

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Topics: Operations, Association Training Programs, Membership, Standards

How to Create an Association-Backed Certification Program

Posted by Andy Freed on 10/23/13 10:00 PM

Ever get handed someone’s business card that has an “alphabet soup” of letters after their name? CISSP? (Certified Information Systems Security Professional) CFP? (Certified Financial Planner) CAE? (Certified Association Executive).

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Topics: Operations, Starting an Association, professional management, certification programs, Associations

The Best Social Media Channels for Professional Associations and Advocacy Groups

Posted by Andy Freed on 10/16/13 5:00 AM

With everyone from your accountant to your grandmother posting status updates, it seems like the whole world has mastered social media strategy. But social media is more complicated that it appears—especially for professional associations who are trying to build relationships, not just follower counts.

Plus, many organizations feel like they need to play catch-up, when it comes to social media. As a result, they overreach,

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Topics: social media, Starting an Association, Technology, Launching an Association, increase membership, Membership, Mobile, Hiring an Association Management Company

3 Things to Do Before Your Professional Association Achieves Its Mission

Posted by Andy Freed on 10/16/13 5:00 AM

Your professional association has met and surpassed all of its original goals. Now you’re operating on cruise control, right? Not so fast…

Sometimes success can bring about unforeseen challenges. An organization that accomplishes its main mission is often faced with the “what now?” syndrome.

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Topics: Operations, Consortia, association management, Membership, success of professional associations, Hiring an Association Management Company

Conference Services: How They Can Improve Your Association Events

Posted by Andy Freed on 10/9/13 5:00 AM

Today’s remote conferencing tools and virtual events are great for going green and reducing travel spend—particularly if your working groups, association executives, or Board members are geographically dispersed. But there’s no real substitute for in-person gatherings. When you need to unite key people in your association—for training, strategizing, or promoting new initiatives—professional conference services can help.

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Topics: Operations, meetings, Launching an Association, increase membership, Membership, Experience, Association Management Company




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Virtual, Inc.


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COO, Senior Vice President
Virtual, Inc.

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