It’s traditional to kick off an association’s year with a meeting.
160 volunteers, 3 days, numerous legislative updates, along with an explosion of inspiration (by Richard Mendenhall), sharing a reference to “545 people” and relating the responsibility of all of the leaders in the room to 100 senators, 435 congressmen, one president and nine Supreme Court Justices of the United States. “545 human beings out of the 235 million are directly, legally, morally and individually responsible” for the promise of our country (taken from an Orlando Sentinel article, the last column written by Charley Reese.)
Andrea Bushnell, CEO, and President Joe Baldwin wanted leaders to leave the meeting with inspiration and ideas for adding value in 2012. So two sessions led them though clarifying their value, creating their proposition, and generating ideas on how to communicate it to members in associations across the state.
The how-to sessions needed to be scalable for the smallest North Carolina association as well as a big Charlotte association; concepts that leaders and staff could take back home and work together.
Kudos to an engaged, attentive group who showed that:
- They “get it” and believe they can create a value proposition that is unique to them
- Its possible to follow specific steps to complete the three legged stool of value
- It’s not up to staff
- They are ready to get to work!
Presidents and AEs, sitting side by side, huddling, talking, and debating which member issues were high value benefits (important enough to include in a value proposition).
It’s the kind of work that makes these meetings pay off. “Leaders in the arena” was a fitting theme. Elected and staff leaders are all in the arena, if only in their minds, thinking about what’s really most important to their most important audience – their members.