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The Association Death Requiem: Twenty Ways to Kill Your Association

08 Mar Posted by in Business | Comments


  1. Lose sight of who you serve. Have your own agenda.
  2. Exist to make money. And then tell everybody you don’t.
  3. Let feelings trump truth. It’s much better to be quiet than hurt someone’s feelings.
  4. Create a good solid conflict of interest at the very core of your association.
  5. Get people to serve by telling them they won’t have to do anything.
  6. Work harder to fill empty seats by doing the same thing you’ve always done.
  7. Refuse to change with your members’ needs and shifting business models.
  8. Find more ways to charge them instead of adding value to their membership.
  9. Create a financial beast by needing their money to exist.
  10.  Measure your success by the number of butts in the chairs.
  11. Don’t listen to anyone else. What do they know?
  12. Trust evaluations. They’ve been working so well.
  13. Insist on doing things the way they’ve always been done.
  14. Feed power struggles and avoid all big elephants in the room.
  15. Work hard to attract new members instead of wondering why the old ones left.
  16. Blame it on the economy.
  17. Let your association be open to people who don’t qualify for membership.
  18. Embrace the same-old-same-old way of holding conferences.
  19. Create cliques – this is your chance at high school all over again.
  20. Let your identity be wrapped up in your position on the board.
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