An Executive Director's point of view
December 12, 2013: Dishonest data
They aren't gauging your support for the company, though. They are attempting to evaluate the performance of the customer service employee.
You may be extremely unhappy with the company, but you think the employee did a good job. So, you provide the company with data that enables it to tout its highly rated service to customers while ignoring its product deficiencies.
Don't follow that dishonest path in your association.
If you ask for customer or member feedback - and you should - use it to evaluate the association, not the employee. Find out what members and customers think of the association, not the employee, and use that feedback to improve your programs and operations.
Collect data honestly.
December 10, 2013: Watch out for the fine print
December 09, 2013: It's not just expenses
He believes the ability to identify new revenue sources is the most important attribute of an association finance officer.
Find out more about how associations can benefit from the financial expertise of staff and contractors in the November/December issue of Forum (it was mailed to members and will be posted online on a public page next month.
December 05, 2013: Wi-Fi at meetings
Here's how some associations are dealing with that.
December 03, 2013: She's no lady
December 02, 2013: Where's the money?
November 28, 2013: Unsupervised volunteers
In fact some Boards, rather than give direction to these people, may let them set their own direction. They "trust" those volunteers and are oh so grateful for the time and (sometimes) expertise that is being donated to the group.
But these volunteers may take liberties they should not take. They may publish their personal opinions, not the association opinions, about industry or professional issues.
They may add links to sites they like, even when those are inappropriate or not even related to the work of the organization.
They may decide what kind of information the association will communicate to its members and to the general public, and decide how that communication will take place.
That should not be allowed.
Web sites, newsletters, and other publications and programs belong to the association, not to the volunteers who manage them. The association, not the individual, should set policies that govern what will be done and how it will be done.
The job of the volunteer is to follow those policies.
The association should never abdicate its authority. It's better to leave a volunteer position vacant than it is to place it in the hands of somebody who does not take direction from the organization.
November 27, 2013: Venues for customer service
November 26, 2013: Speak up!
At one association (where I served as CEO), a vendor was suggested to fill a Board vacancy. Everybody on the Board - yes everybody - thought that was a great idea. The vote would have been unanimous.
I reminded them that the vendor had an economic interest in the work of our organization and would use the position to benefit his business. I asked them what they would say to the vendor's twenty-six competitors when they sought Board positions, too.
Nobody had thought of that. The suggestion was rescinded and no vote was taken. I prevented the Board from making a bad decision.
So speak up when you disagree. Otherwise, you may allow a bad decision to be made.
November 25, 2013: Kiddie tech
Here's what some people say.