I like to compare the traditional association model to that of the traditional car model. Cars of today have the same four components they did in the 1960's, with an engine, body, frame, and four wheels. The car has always been the best and most efficient mode of transportation for the average person. Yet the cars of today outperform cars of the 1960's, because of technology advancements and re-engineering.
Associations are exactly the same. The traditional model of today encompasses the same core elements as the 1960's, in that associations provide groups of people with a common passion, a purpose, and a chance to:
- Organize themselves
- Coordinate their efforts
- Leverage the costs over many people
- Do things as a group, they could not do individually, effectively
- Build trust to take advantage of business opportunities
With technology advancements such as social media, gotomypc, go to meeting, Skype, and mobile, the association model has made the association model stronger and more powerful because:
- We have now given the smallest member in the most remote location an opportunity to be involved in the conversation.
- We have empowered our members to connect 24/7.
- We have engaged our members to have a louder voice because the voice has expanded.
- We have become more important as a trusted filter to the incredible amount of wrong information on the internet.
I know this, because our organization still runs a traditional model, with a baby boomer board of directors, baby boomer members, and committee structures. However, over the last six years, our association has aggressively made technology advancements, and re-engineered our habits, and the member satisfaction, member loyalty, engagement of the younger generation, and financial strength of our organization has never been higher.
Here's the deal:
- People WANT to accomplish something bigger than themselves with groups common to them.
- People WANT to be a part of something exciting.
- People WANT to believe in an organization who can empower them to make it happen.
As the commercial says..."Life comes at your fast. Stop talking and start doing."