Are You Feeling Conflicted?

By: John Ricco, CAE and Eric Thorn, Esq.

No, this is not a blog post about the upcoming election!  Many of us who have worked with volunteer boards of directors or served as a board member have run across questions of whether a specific action creates a conflict of interest and what is the right way to handle a potential conflict.

What exactly is a conflict of interest?  Continue reading Are You Feeling Conflicted?

Tips and Tricks for Strengthening Your Association’s Volunteer Leaders

By: Rachel Luoma, MS, CAE

I remember reading this great blog by my colleague Will Ferguson about being a volunteer leader.  In it, he provides some great tips for those looking to become involved in an association, such as selecting a volunteer position, being present, following through and knowing when to step back.

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As I read through it, I couldn’t help but think about the other side of the equation – managing volunteer leaders.  I always say that volunteers are the heart of the association and staff members are the legs.  The staff can do the heavy lifting, but the organization is dead without the heart – the volunteers.  Continue reading Tips and Tricks for Strengthening Your Association’s Volunteer Leaders

Time to Get Lean

By: Kristi Spargo

Sometimes my job can be messy.  Chaotic.  Unorganized.  Sometimes it’s easy to get frustrated with clients or co-workers for causing delays or problems. Sometimes I succumb to the belief that if only the cogs in the wheel would just turn like I think they are supposed to, then everything would fall perfectly into place. Sometimes I want to set up an assembly line and force the project to keep moving forward in the most simple and efficient fashion.

But that’s not realistic when working within a people-intensive field such as association management. Throughout my years in the industry, no matter what position I held, my primary focus has always been customer service.  Associations are built to meet people’s needs; it’s my job to facilitate that for association members and I accomplish it by working efficiently with my co-workers. As much as I might desire a planned and orderly day, I don’t work in a factory assembly line and therefore, I deal with whatever hits me first.  Yet I have found that there are some valuable manufacturing concepts that can assist in crafting a more streamlined workday. Continue reading Time to Get Lean