Engagement and Moving to We. Moving to “we” is about inclusiveness and being open to the possibilities that might surface. This requires an integrated blend of “push” and “pull” offerings, with the explicit expectation that together “we” make great things happen for members.
There is a fundamental flaw in the approach of many associations. Everything, whether spoken, written, or inferred, says: “here is what we do for you”. And in their attempt to demonstrate that staff and volunteer leaders do care what members think, associations tend to be far more reactive than proactive. Worse yet, some shy away from asking members what they really want for fear they might actually get that feedback. Not everyone wants to have their views challenged, especially if they have spent years executing on those views/assumptions.
Understanding an Association’s alignment with member needs includes assessing the relationships between staff, volunteer leaders, and other members. Most association executives view this interface through a lens of “we/you”. The evolving association model is all about “we”.
The Strategic Engagement Framework© is built upon the relationship between increasing levels of membership impact while increasing levels of contribution and connectedness. Associations (especially those facing stiff competition) are recognizing that member engagement strategies are a true differentiator and game changer.
To be relevant then, Associations should help members collaborate to achieve something they care about. Use the Strategic Engagement Framework (below) to reinforce a balanced blend of member behaviors that collectively result in optimal association impact.
Engagement and Moving to We
People value and make contributions to activities that help them achieve something they care about. Treating each member as having a piece of the puzzle because the association’s job is to facilitate 24/7 knowledge sharing leads to innovative solutions which drive member their business outcomes.