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50 Years BOLD: Reflections On The 2018 WSAE Annual Convention

Blog post by Katie Berry, Team Manager

As a first-time attendee, I wasn’t sure what I should expect from the Washington Society of Association Executives (WSAE) Annual Convention, 50 Years Bold. I can tell you now that after three days of engaging sessions and networking with others in the association world, I left feeling inspired, reenergized, […]

4 Ways To Go Paperless At Your Next Conference

Going paperless is an idea that event and conference planners have been working towards for several years. Aside from being environmentally friendly, going paperless is also much more affordable and less stressful. Organizing a conference is demanding enough, especially when you have to print large quantities of programs and hand-outs on tight deadlines. Why not go paperless and alleviate some of this pressure by offering your attendees all of the information they need electronically using a smartphone or tablet? They may even thank you for not handing them tons of stuff to carry around! Here are four ways to help you organize a paperless conference.  […]

Never Lose Sight of the Members Your Association Serves

For most board members the job description is clear: they have a responsibility to serve as a community ambassador, advocating for the organization while cultivating relationships with stakeholders. However, some boards fail to make that important connection with their members and other supporters. They tend to get lost in the logistics and financial challenges they face and lose sight of the people they are there to serve. This can be detrimental to nonprofit associations because the primary focus of the board needs to remain on the members they are serving as well as those who are financial contributors.  […]

A New Member Joined Your Association – Now What?

Your hard work in membership marketing and relationship building has paid off and your association has some brand new members! Now it’s time to get your new members informed and excited about your organization. One of the biggest factors in retention is member engagement, so it is up to you to make sure you start off on the right foot helping your new members feel welcome and offering plenty of opportunities for them to get involved. If you want to make sure your members are getting the most out of their membership, consider these strategies to help new members get started. […]

Building Leadership Capacity of Committee Chairs and Potential Board Leaders

There is no doubt that the roles of the committee chair and board leaders are pivotal in any organization. They help to structure, organize, and carry out the mission of the organization. One would only imagine, then, that a great deal of planning and preparation goes into selecting the people who will step into these very important roles. Would you be surprised to know that nearly half of the people who have held these positions did nothing specifically to prepare for the role of board or committee chair? In fact, many of them hadn’t even held a lower position before taking a leadership role. With that in mind, it is clear that many nonprofits have not given these leadership roles the attention they deserve. Let’s examine how association leaders can work to build the leadership capacity of committee chairs and board leaders. […]

Tips to Ensure the Board Fulfills its Governance Responsibilities

Effective governance by the Board of Directors is fundamental to the success of any nonprofit association. Effective governance greatly assists the organization, is efficient, allows for a respectful conflict of ideas, is focused, and leads to good outcomes. The primary role of the board is to establish policies, make significant and strategic decisions, and steward the health of the organization. Here are a few tips that will ensure that the organization’s board fulfills these governance responsibilities.  […]

How to Keep Your Association’s Board Focused on Strategic Direction

It is important for any non-profit association to have a strategic plan in place to help the organization achieve its mission. The staff and board should work together and commit to working toward measurable goals, implementing new strategies, and revisiting their strategic plan on a regular basis as the organization’s environment changes. Unfortunately, research suggests […]

Roadmap to Boosting Conference Attendance Year over Year

Nothing is more frustrating and disappointing than spending countless hours and lots of money planning an event only to have a mediocre turnout. Empty chairs are the most dreaded sight for any event planner. Conference attendance is extremely pertinent to non-profits, as it is a primary way to boost funding for the organization as well […]

Things to Consider When Searching for an Event Venue

Event and meeting planners go to great lengths to ensure their events are not the same cookie-cutter gatherings that everyone is used to attending. They want their event to stand out and be a truly enjoyable experience for guests. This is especially important for non-profit associations, who might be using the event as an opportunity to attain new members and raise money for the organization. If people are engaged and having fun they are more likely to support the organization. One of the most important aspects of planning a successful event is selecting the right venue. Here are a few things to consider when looking for an event venue. […]

What Your Members Want to Read in Your Newsletter

Think about the last time you received a newsletter and whether or not you actually read it.  The truth is it can be incredibly difficult to get your audience to read your association’s newsletter. All too often they see it in their inbox and either delete without opening it or begin reading the first few paragraphs before becoming distracted and moving on to something else.  There could be a number of things impacting your newsletter readership, and fortunately, there are several things you can do to revamp it. Here are a few suggestions for recharging your newsletter and bringing it back to life. […]

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