Association Management Blog

Your Choice: Change or Irrelevance

Posted by Andy Freed on 4/15/14 2:20 AM

One of my favorite quotes was when Eric Shinseki, then the Army Chief of Staff, now Secretary of Veteran’s Affairs, said “If you don’t like change, you’re going to like irrelevance even less.”

I love that.

But boy, is it tough for a lot of associations to heed this advice. Many organizations are well on their way to irrelevance.

Read More

Topics: Operations, Starting an Association, Organizational Development, association management, Technology, Launching an Association, Membership, Leadership

Old soldiers never die, they just fade away. So goes the adage.

Posted by Andy Freed on 4/2/14 2:00 AM

Well, for many Board members, “fading away” means unceremoniously dropping them off the Board. That’s why former Board members are often a trouble spot for organizations—someone goes from being “in the know” to “out in the cold.” The result: a one time key member—and often still influential one—becomes disenfranchised.

Read More

Topics: Operations, Starting an Association, Organizational Development, Management, Board of Directors, Membership, Leadership, Association, BOD

Missed Connections

Posted by Andy Freed on 3/20/14 3:12 AM

I’m still pretty young (by my own standards). But I can remember the days of pink “while you were out” slips, calling in for messages from pay phones and (gasp) not having email at work.

And every innovation carries with it the same promise—it will keep us more connected. In many ways, this is true. When I sit in a far away hotel room talking to my kids over Facetime (when they actually answer), it’s a remarkable display of the promise of the connected society.

Read More

Topics: Starting an Association, association management, Technology, Membership, Leadership, Standards

At the Ready

Posted by Andy Freed on 3/10/14 4:37 AM

Yesterday I went underwear shopping.

This isn’t usually blog-worthy, but it actually tells you a bit of what we try to do here at Virtual.

One of our clients was due to testify on Capitol Hill on Tuesday. Due to a massive 4-inch snowstorm that Washington isn’t terribly adept at clearing, his testimony was delayed until Thursday.

Read More

Topics: Operations, Starting an Association, association management companies, Membership, Standards, Association Management Company

Always On

Posted by Andy Freed on 1/23/14 6:40 AM

My holiday gift to myself this year was a Pebble Smartwatch. Of course, I got one in part because I can’t resist the latest gadget. (For other gadget geeks out there, I strongly recommend the UK Magazine T3, available on the iPad. It’s like porn for gadget geeks.)

But another reason I got one is even more pitiful. I simply can’t resist the siren song of my vibrating phone, and the twenty seconds it was

Read More

Topics: Starting an Association, Technology, Membership, Mobile

Meetings 5.0: Five Ways to Improve Your Events

Posted by Andy Freed on 1/14/14 6:34 AM

This week I’m speaking on a panel at the New England Society of Association Executives Annual Meeting. I’ll be honest, I’m not entirely sure what the session title is. But I know it has something to do with “innovations in meetings and programs.”

And while I’m not entirely sure of the topic, I’ve got some thoughts on how meetings are changing. Here’s my “high five.”

Read More

Topics: Organizational Development, Governance, association management, Technology, Board of Directors, Conference Planning, Membership, Training, Association Management Company

Scouting for Talent within Your Association Membership

Posted by Andy Freed on 12/4/13 3:41 AM

New York Yankees pitcher, Mariano Rivera, retired at the end of this baseball season. After all the years Rivera he’s spent in the league—he’s retiring at age 43—it’s easy to forget where he came from. But I won’t make you look it up. Rivera is a product of the New York Yankees farm system. (If you’re not a baseball fan, the farm system is a network of minor league teams that supports the major league teams—it’s where talent is developed).

Read More

Topics: Operations, Governance, association management, Board of Directors, Membership, Experience, Association Management Company, Hiring an Association Management Company

Lessons in Association Management: How to Communicate Your Group’s Vision

Posted by Andy Freed on 11/27/13 3:38 AM

I recently read a great article in The New York Times about how challenging it will be for Microsoft to find its new CEO, given the diversity of businesses that the company represents. The article ends with a quote from Harvard Business School professor, David Yoffie:

“I think the fundamental question for the next CEO of Microsoft is, what is his vision for Microsoft?”

Read More

Topics: Operations, Organizational Development, Governance, Board of Directors, Membership, Experience, Association Management Company, Hiring an Association Management Company

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.

Read More

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.

Read More

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

badge-small

CONTRIBUTORS

ANDY FREED

President
Virtual, Inc.

GREG KOHN

Vice President of Client Services
Virtual, Inc.

BRUCE ROGERS

CEO
Virtual, Inc.

TERRY LOWNEY

COO, Senior Vice President
Virtual, Inc.
ALL CONTRIBUTORS »

Subscribe to Email Updates

Follow Us