Members Hire Constant Transformation

Members Hire Constant Transformation

Late Breaking News. Members Hire Constant Transformation. As Artificial Intelligence, the cloud, and virtual reality take hold, Industries will invest resources in Associations that are equally transformation focused. Despite profitability, Industries are using new technologies to prepare for whatever comes next. As a result, Associations must continually transform themselves if they want to keep pace with members. Part of that shift will be an improved focus on consistently helping Industries solve their biggest problems. A Forbes Insights survey notes that “Enterprises successfully making the transformational shift have plenty of impactful benefits awaiting them.” If Associations make the transformational shift and create commercial synergies that regularly help Industries solve their biggest problems, they too will have ample benefits awaiting them.

In building these new synergies, several Associations are finding themselves stepping far outside of traditional lanes. Existing member benefit and services models are being replaced with a savvy focus  helping Industries solve their biggest problems and win in the marketplace. This approach is emerging as the next wave of Association evolution. Executives leading this transformational effort employ an adaptive model with far reaching world views because they:

  • See their Associations as market movers – Challenging their own thinking and rapidly embracing opportunities to help members consistently solve their problems.
  • Are Data focused – Sharing any new or emerging research insights that might give company owners, executives, entrepreneurs, employees, and investors a window into new and emerging market opportunities.
  • Have Fearless implementation in their DNA – Fast moving culture with energized staff in a time of innovation and rapid change.
  • Practice Transparent ROI – Frequently seek insights and communicate progress on investments made to grow the Industry with Board members.

Embracing a new value imperative recognizing that Members Hire Constant Transformation is a large part of what future focused Associations do. And while relevance is necessary for organizational survival, it’s not enough in this disruptive and uncertain era.  Some leaders already acknowledge that relevance by itself can’t be a winning strategy in a dynamic business environment. They emphasize a need to evolve past relevance, and in doing so they’re fueled with entrepreneurial spirit, constant transformation, and an organizational thirst for commercial success. They are:

The Global Cold Chain Alliance (GCCA) – This is an Industry helping feed the planet in the midst of a wave of e-Commerce, automation, and increasing food consumption. Imagine a fast paced organization with a fluid portfolio that sees its role as an Industry partner committed to transparent returns on time and money invested as it:

  • Positions the Industry with its customers.
  • Provides real time workforce solutions.
  • Reduces Industry costs.

Through its core partner Trade Associations, the International Association for Refrigerated Warehouses (IARW), the International Refrigerated Transportation Association (IRTA), the World Food Logistics Organization (WLFO), and the Controlled Environment Building Association (CEBA), GCCA consistently  steps outside of traditional lanes to help “Grow the Industry and lead the Cold Chain”.

Grow the Industry – Creation of a  Cold Chain Index to facilitate Industry growth and mitigate concerns of commoditization. The Index’s return to the Industry is helping to justify price changes with its customers.

Customer Research – GCCA delivered survey insights helping the Industry understand what customers seek. Findings include feedback from 200 food companies in 14 countries. It identified Industry perceptions, including the common reasons work is ceased by food manufacturers and processors.

Talent Recruitment and Development – The Association supports efforts to Recruit Refrigeration Engineers, Partner with Supply Chain programs to Recruit Students at Universities and Colleges and reduce worker turnover by sharing best practices in support of worker on boarding programs. The organization also provides assets helping the Industry attract new workers, including an Industry promotional video “We Are The Cold Chain”, branded by each of the companies for local market worker recruitment.

Disruptive Advocacy – Devising a direct engagement approach with Federal Regulators, individual companies have seen a decrease in the number of violations at OSHA through fines per inspection.  Similarly positive results for the Industry were achieved with other key Federal Agencies including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Corey Rosenbusch

Replacing the traditional member benefit and services model – Forming a commercial partnership GCCA is helping the Industry grow, providing resources to attract and keep talent, and Advocacy that reduces costs and increases Industry profitability. These factors acknowledge GCCA’s role as market movers. The organization is also aligned with companies and never hesitates to step outside of traditional lanes to facilitate Industry success. Also, the staff team engages and continually brainstorms new opportunities with its Board. In this environment, Association revenues have grown despite Industry consolidation. Corey Rosenbusch, President & CEO, is working with the Board, and conducting market research to uncover new opportunities to transform again and support Cold Chain growth.

Members Hire Constant TransformationAssociation for Unmanned Vehicles International (AUVSI)Incorporating a unique brand of fast moving entrepreneurial transformation, an impressive myriad of Advocacy, insightful research, thought leadership, and engagement, this organization is defining and promoting the future quality of life for current and future generations through Unmanned Systems. With an adaptive market focus, the Association directs resources to advance deployment of Air, Ground, Maritime, and Enabling Technology Systems:

  • Advocate to Gain Acceptance – Whether at the federal, state, or local level, the Association utilizes insightful research for stakeholders through its Unmanned Systems & Robotics Database (USRD). This and other research, including the Industry’s economic footprint, helps build acceptance in the regulator and legislator communities. The Board of Directors, Members, & Chapters are part of an engagement juggernaut to advance acceptance of Unmanned Systems. Targeted Advocacy to advance Industry Acceptance in the marketplace is top of Mind. For example:
    • Helped the Industry achieve passage of the FAA Reauthorization Act to facilitate extended air operations.
    • Works with the Coalition for America’s Future to Advocate for deployment of driverless cars and trucks.
    • Serves as the primary Industry representative of the American Bureau of Shipping’s Autonomous Vessel Consortium to advance utilization of Unmanned Maritime vehicles.
  • Grow the Industry – Consistently engaging Industry Leaders and the value chain through innovative programming to build and design Unmanned Systems future. The center point of AUVSI’s community building and knowledge sharing is it’s Industry gold standard Trade Show, XPONENTIAL. Annually manufacturers, suppliers, Industry thought leaders, & government officials gather to share progress and surface new opportunities to grow Unmanned Systems.

      Brian Wynne

Replacing the traditional member benefit and services model – Despite persistent headwinds, AUVSI helps a disruptive Industry navigate its pathway to market acceptance. Stepping outside traditional lanes through fearless implementation with an Industry growth focus the Association is helping to deliver business outcomes to a nascent Industry. The organization’s four year revenue and membership growth reinforce its role as market movers. Association President & CEO, Brian Wynne is also collaborating with the Board in a Strategic Industry Planning process. Whatever comes next could help the Industry in its quest to achieve full acceptance of Unmanned Systems in everyday life. By doing so, AUVSI will continue its work in helping Unmanned Systems achieve commercial success.

News Media Alliance (NMA) – In an Industry that prided itself on longstanding profitability, it’s facing enormous challenges from digital transformation. The original business model leveraged its strategic advantages through ownership of the content distribution channel. Digital consumption changed the game and along with it ownership of distribution. While Print remains profitable its declining in the face of a growing digital audience. The way forward is complicated, and this Industry is coming to grips with what happens once print revenues go away. Since new technologies and consumer shifts are constant and there is no accepted strategy for success in the Publishing Industry. Understanding the challenges faced by the Industry and its members, the News Media Alliance transformed itself to help them solve their biggest problems.

The organization’s transformation is based on moving away from a limited, government advocacy model and strategically reshaping its role as market mover in a highly disrupted Industry:

  • Advocate to Improve the Industry’s Competitive Position – Since content distribution is controlled by Facebook and Google, the Alliance helping Publishers level the playing field, allowing news publishers to collectively negotiate and withhold content as leverage for better terms and conditions through the “Journalism and Competition Preservation Act of 2018.”
  • Growing the Industry –
    • Implementing aDigital Dialogue– With Google, Facebook, and Amazon to help deliver both traffic and revenue back to the news media Industry.
    • Conducting important research to help the Industry understand more about their audience, i.e. how they want to consume information and identify possible strategies that could be helpful in the changing advertising market.
    • Releasing an “Advertising Panorama” providing a comprehensive look at the news audience and how marketers can reach them.

    David Chavern

Replacing the traditional member benefit and services model – In its departure from the traditional model, the Alliance is on the leading edge of change. With clear eyes it reshaped the organization’s focus including shutting down the Trade Show. Recognizing that the Industry’s challenges are more commercial than political, Advocacy is just one part of its market positioning. Its larger role nowadays is staying close to the Industry, understanding, delivering, and helping the Industry overcome its challenges and restoring it to a stronger and more profitable footing. Membership is growing as the Industry views the Alliance as its partner in constant transformation. David Chavern, President & CEO notes “we’re energized with our role in building tools to help the Industry win commercially.”

Members Hire Constant Transformation

    JP Moery

In an era of constant transformation, Association leaders should radically shift their focus to helping Industries achieve commercial success. JP Moery, President, The Moery Company, and author of Association Hustle – Top Strategies for Association Growth, emphasizes that these Associations are thriving because “Each understands that Association survival is driven by entrepreneurism, willingness to pivot, and their ability to adopt innovative strategies that help their members succeed.”

Letting go of the member benefit and services model is increasingly a given, especially when Members hire constant transformation. Association Executives from the Global Cold Chain Alliance, Association for Unmanned Vehicles, and the News Media Alliance are adopting the transformational and commercial success formula, and they are getting traction because they:

  • See their Associations as market movers – Challenging their own thinking and rapidly embracing opportunities to help members consistently solve their problems.
  • Are Data focused – Sharing any new or emerging research insights that might give company owners, executives, entrepreneurs, employees, and investors a window into new and emerging market opportunities.
  • Have Fearless implementation in their DNA – Fast moving culture with energized staff in a time of innovation and rapid change.
  • Practice Transparent ROI – Frequently seek insights and communicate progress on investments made to grow the Industry with Board members.

Members Hire Constant TransformationPhilosopher Arthur Schopenhauer observed that “Truth Passes Through Three Stages: First, It Is Ridiculed. Second, It Is Violently Opposed. Third, It Is Accepted as Self-Evident.” Late Breaking News. For Associations, tomorrow’s world is here today, Members hire constant transformation.

To learn more about how your organization can constantly transform click here.

Just Another Association

just another association

Strive to Be More Than Just Another Association 

Associations who seek to grow or expand revenues need to be more than just another association. In today’s uncertain global business environment, associations must be perceived as extensions of company and industry business strategies and not be just another association. Those who are aligned with business challenges and outcomes are relevant because they relate to what really matters. Having this connectivity is the critical ingredient to making your association durable and more able to grow revenue.

Inside Out Means Your Just Another Association

Despite more robust economic growth forecasts, companies still face regulatory hurdles, changing consumer sentiments, and disruptive market forces. The “internet of everything” is lowering the barrier of entry for all products and services and reshaping how consumers make their purchasing decisions. Traditional food retailers are addressing loss in foot traffic as health focused consumers seek out online “farm to fork” retailers. The insurance industry sees its consumers seeking out lower cost options for life, property, and casualty insurance coverage.

Being just another association means that members perceive your organization as focused on what it needs instead of helping the members and their companies, professions or industries achieve their outcomes. Since your members have more options than ever to consume new solutions, it’s a matter of time before they vote with their feet and go somewhere else. If your association wants to grow revenues then it must shift its focus to an industry or profession perspective. Organizations who transform and become strategic allies are better positioned to address member challenges and therefore be more likely to grow revenue.

Strategic Growth and Development

Hiring marketing or sales firms at the onset isn’t the right approach. After all, selling louder and selling more is a risky short term approach. While you may see revenue growth in the short term, the next economic downturn could deliver a volcano sized wallop to your operating performance.

Just another associationIf an organization wishes to grow then its strategies, products, and services must be formulated around industry or profession challenges and outcomes. This is an outside in approach that will better position your association. Strategic growth and development is a longer term approach that connects your organization with the things that your members care about.

3 Steps Driving Strategic Growth and Development

Building new strategies is all about what we do together. Engaging your board and letting them know the process is about their industry challenges and outcomes is the right first step. Today’s board members are different. They are busier and more likely to give precious time to those efforts that help drive industry or profession success. Utilizing your senior staff team and your board your association is ready to begin its strategic growth and development journey.

  1. Identify Actionable Needs

Avoid the pitfalls of satisfaction surveys. Organizations utilizing satisfaction surveys are more likely perceived by their members as just another association. Members don’t care about your association’s “outputs”. They only care about “outcomes” that address their business/ professional challenges and opportunities. Everything else is just noise. Going back to your board with high satisfaction scores while they face increasingly more challenges will send them to the exits. Develop an externally focused industry or profession survey helps to understand the challenges they face and the solutions they require.

Case Study:

Just Another AssociationIn December 2016, the Society for Vascular Ultrasound, in Lanham, Maryland utilized a Member Impact Survey to help its board and staff team identify the profession’s up at night challenges and opportunities. While survey participation is usually in the 2% to 4% range, 15% of the Society’s members participated. The results provided actionable data on the critical concerns that matter most to those involved in the Vascular Technology Profession. SVU Executive Director James Wilkinson notes “this data-driven process helped us determine how to move the needle for our professionals. It also helped us arrive at a strategic roadmap that will increase the relevance of our niche field and allow our professionals to take their careers to the next level. “

  1. Develop Unique Products: Address Industry & Profession Challenges with Real Solutions

Members will contribute time, knowledge and ideas when they perceive an opportunity to impact the outcomes they seek. Making this happens means that you must change the conversation from association “outputs” to business or profession “outcomes”.

Focusing on member outcomes will drive development of the best outputs, not the other way around.

Case Study:

Just Another AssociationAs part of its strategic plan work Reston, Virginia based NPES affirmed the need to deliver actionable Industry Research for Global Print Manufacturers, Printers, and the Brand Owners. The Industry needs research that provides actionable data for immediate implementation for the Industry’s value chain. In formulating this strategy, the board and the members also expressed interest in the following activities that would drive their global business outcomes:

  • Expand involvement of Printers and Advertising Agencies
  • Engage Brand Owners in research program
  • Include research with case studies on the effectiveness of print
  • Create and format research for “action”
  • Develop new partners with providers of groundbreaking Industry Research and Market Data
  • Create high level of engagement End-Users, Advertising Agencies
    and OEM’s to knowledge share

“We are aligning ourselves with industry and the entire value chain. As a result, we are well situated now to have a major impact on industry outcomes and results. We now can become the leader which our members and the industry need” says Thayer Long, NPES President.

  1. Apply the Doctrine of the Differentiated Experience

The real power of associations is about facilitating the creation of new solutions to address evolving member challenges and objectives. Created a differentiated experience means engaging your members in ways that facilitate knowledge-sharing and collaboration with other members. This means your members are more connected. If they are you can track how your member’s knowledge contributions to collaboration with the industry or the profession and helps them feel more connected to your association.

Case Study:

Just Another AssociationThe Alexandria, Virginia based American Staffing Association continually accelerates its relevance and the unique experiences for its member professionals. As reported in the November – December 2016 edition of Staffing Success, ASA is creating opportunities for their members to learn about technology solutions and participate in knowledge sharing. The Association uncovered the opportunity through an up-at-night issue survey where members and managers expressed interest in this this type of engagement. The organization is establishing task forces to keep the industry connected to new technology trends to support its ongoing efforts to formulate new levels of thought leadership and industry peer to peer knowledge exchange. In doing so, ASA is increasing its member’s level of connectedness with the organization.

Just Another Association

Increasing top line revenue is not a function of selling more or selling louder it’s all about how your association is at the heart of the of the industry or profession that you serve.  Identifying actionable needs, developing unique products: Addressing Industry & Profession Challenges with Real Solutions, & applying the Doctrine of the Differentiated Experience helps you to create a roadmap that leads to Strategic Growth & Development. How will you and your team know that you are ready to drive revenue growth? Your board and your members will view your association as an extension of their business strategies. This also means that you are not just another association.

just another association

 

 

Free eBook “Accelerating Strategic Member Engagement” is available upon request for all Association Executives at Potomac Core – Association Consulting

3 Association Growth Strategies

3 Association Growth StrategiesSluggish global growth and U.S. growth, the race for talent, and disruptive innovation create opportunities for Associations and Professional Societies to become more essential. It’s all about alignment with industry and professional outcomes that your members care most about. Those organizations who utilize these 3 Association Growth Strategies can help impact member outcomes and as a result better position their members and their organizations for long term success.

3 Association Growth Strategies

1. Secure Actionable Research

Securing forward looking data is essential. Utilizing “Impact” Surveys instead of member satisfaction surveys will help your organization determine the desired future outcomes that members seek to address their “up at night” issues. These issues must also be examined segment by segment.

The Global Cold Chain Alliance, GCCA, utilized both qualitative and quantitative research in order to align itself with its stakeholders. Through this process the organization aligned its internal team and they have transformed themselves into strategic partners for the Global Refrigerated Warehouse Industry. In doing so, GCCA is helping its members drive future outcomes.

3 Association Growth StrategiesAccording to Corey Rosenbusch, President and CEO, GCCA, the organization is taking its partnership a step further. The organization conducts qualitative research with their member’s customers to help align GCCA and their industry with the business outcomes their customers seek. Here again the organization impacts member outcomes.

Association revenues have grown by 25% in the last year and a half.

2. Demonstrate Strategic Alignment

Strategic alignment with your member’s industry and its professional outcomes is key to your organization’s long term durability and growth. Without a recognized level of strategic alignment members will not perceive the important connection between your organization and their business outcomes.

3 Association Growth StrategiesAt the National Wooden Pallet and Container Association, Brent McClendon, President and CEO, continually seeks ways in which he can help accelerate member engagement. He does this by making sure that NWPCA listens closely to its members and then aligns its resources with the appropriate company and industry outcomes. One example of aligning its resources is through its software platform. Their proprietary software, “Pallet Design System” is both a product specification and engineering design tool as well as a professional marketing tool, and educational tool to serve the wood pallet industry. This platform accelerates member engagement and it’s a concrete example of how a product can drive future outcomes.

NWPCA has experienced 60% revenue growth over the last three years.

3. Design the Industry’s Future

Serving as a leader and convener for your industry creates the strongest possible link between your organization and the member’s your serve.  The link is reinforced when you provide a safe space for your members to collaborate and design their future together.

3 Association Growth StrategiesThe Smart Electric Power Alliance, SEPA, brings companies together in all aspects of power generation to design and build the industry of the future. Julia Hamm, President and CEO, and the SEPA team link the industry’s all stakeholders to develop, share, and build future focused solutions for their industry. The organization facilitates important conversations, doesn’t take sides, and serves as an industry convener. SEPA is all about helping members determine how to best drive future outcomes.

For example, SEPA created a 51st State Initiative that creates ongoing opportunities for experts and industry leaders to share, test, and provide feedback on direction and innovation to support an evolving utility sector. Through the 51st State initiative, all stakeholders have can participate in designing “Sustainable market structures from the ground-up, rather than attempting to make wholesale or partial changes to something that has been in place for decades.”

The Smart Electric Power Alliance has seen annual revenues grow 23% (2015 to 2016) and also in 2016 experienced a 62% increase in total staff (to 35 employees from 22).

3 Association Growth Strategies

In a September 2016 interview in Fortune Magazine, GM’s CEO Mary Barra was asked “What would you tell your younger self to do differently?” She replied “Focus more on speed. Time is not our friend.” These 3 Association Growth Strategies will give your organization greater speed and help your organization impact industry and professional outcomes that your members care most about.

3 Association Growth Strategies

 

Free eBook “Accelerating Strategic Member Engagement” is available upon request for all Association Executives at Potomac Core – Association Consulting

 

active innovation

Data Fuels Active Innovation

In a growing trend, Association CEO’s and their Board Members are utilizing economic data as important context for their strategic deliberations. Jobs data, Housing StartsInstitute for Supply Management Index (ISM), Oil Prices, Consumer Spending, and U.S. Dollar Performance against other currencies is a more frequent topic at Association Strategic Planning Sessions. Although Strategic Plans cover 3 year windows, Boards encourage their CEO’s to be flexible and to use trend data to meet shifting demands to help their industries. In essence, economic data fuels active innovation at Associations.

Positive Association Disruption

Positive Association Disruption

Can positive association disruption reverse the fortunes for industry professionals and an organization? In a weak economic growth environment, it’s a daunting task. According to the 2016 PWC U.S. CEO Survey concerns “over volatility and over-regulation are rising.” What’s more, Reuters reported that retail sales slipped in a recent report and fourth quarter U.S. economic growth was only 1%.  How can an Association overtake an economic cycle and put its members and itself in the driver’s seat? The answer is its possible and for one Association it yielded a $1 million turnaround in operating performance.

Disruptive Advocacy Strategies

Disruptive Advocacy Strategies

Can Disruptive Advocacy Strategies unlock industry growth and cost saving opportunities for your members in a slow growth economy?  While the possibility of a recession seems unlikely this year, growth remains a challenge for many industries. According to the Conference Board, U.S. growth in 2016 is forecast at 2.0% while Global growth is forecast slightly higher at 2.5%. As increasing regulatory oversight dominates the federal and global landscape, building an agency focused strategy on behalf of your members can pay dividends for the industry and for your association.

disruptive innovation

Disruptive Innovation Creates Association Opportunities

Disruptive Innovation “describes a process whereby a smaller company with fewer resources is able to successfully challenge established incumbent businesses.” In a slowing and uneven global economy, are your members looking somewhere else for lower cost and innovative solutions? Are your members less confident about their growth opportunities than they were a year or two ago? Does your membership perceive your association as being aligned with their business and professional goals? Having actionable data that answers these questions is more important than ever for associations in a world of disruptive innovation.

Driverless Associations

Driverless Associations

Ring in the age of Driverless Associations. It’s 2016 with Medical, and Pharmaceutical breakthroughs, Driverless cars,  and industries that are busy producing a new wave of technological breakthroughs. Slow U.S. GDP Growth  and modest improvement in Global Growth appear to be the bellwethers of even more technology advancements. These innovations help capture consumer imaginations, elevate company operating performance, and grow market share. Innovative Organizations who reach outside the box to help their member’s develop growth solutions can transform themselves into Driverless Associations.

Innovative Workforce Solutions

Innovative Workforce Solutions

Associations are increasingly well positioned to help members and industries build innovative workforce solutions through their professional development and certification products. As waves of innovation, millennials, and baby boomer retirements alter future workforce design, forward thinking organizations can transform themselves and become professional development partners for their members.

what we do for you

Here is What We Do for You

The Wall Street Journal recently reported that if the current trend continues, Data provider Dealogic estimates that Global Mergers and Acquisitions will climb to and exceed $4.58 trillion in 2015. In a low growth economic environment, corporations seeking growth are actively pursuing the best merger combinations. Although associations don’t control the external business environment, they do have the ability to move away from a “here is what we do for you “posture to a “together we succeed” posture.