The Strauss Blog

Managing Tough Board Conversations

Whether you are the Chair of an association board of directors, or the chief staff officer (Executive Director), facilitating tough conversations at the board level isn’t always easy. The best way to handle tough conversations is through open and transparent dialogue and, whenever possible, by arranging face to face meetings. It is important that the […]

Preparing a new Board to Perform

For many associations, board turnover is perpetual. This can be great for an association but can also be disruptive. It is important to be prepared for a new group of volunteers and to empower them to use their capabilities to perform to the best of their ability, ultimately resulting in little or no disruption to […]

How to Know When Your Association Needs Help from a Professional Accountant

There can be many challenges when managing an association, especially a small one that may not have endless resources or a need for numerous full-time staff members. In particular, for a small association the accounting most likely does not require the work of a full-time accountant, it is still important to make sure that the […]

Tips for New Association Member Onboarding

A new member’s first interaction with an association can make a lasting impression. There are a variety of different ways that you can onboard your members. It is important to personalize your member initiation to the particular needs of the new member based on what their expectations are. Every member relationship should begin with communication of some […]

The Importance of a Standard Operating Procedures Manual in Association Management

One of the key ingredients to an association’s success is having policies and procedures set in place. In order to maximize client and member satisfaction, it is important to ensure that policies and procedures capture the necessary information and are kept up to date. Imagine a scenario where an association has no vision, no objectives, […]

Introducing a new Membership Category to your Association

Associations often offer multiple membership categories to cover various backgrounds, entrance requirements and preferences within the association’s structure and membership base. Membership categories could be based on professional and/or educational backgrounds, years in the profession and working status among other criteria. Depending on the association’s structure and goals, membership categories are either chosen or are […]

How to Determine When to Introduce a New Program or Service to Your Association

Members of associations across all professions are finding it increasingly difficult to rationalize membership and return on investment in belonging to an organization. Associations need to identify the needs of members and adapt operations to what necessitates paying annual dues. Many times, it is either necessary to implement a new service into your member benefits […]

How to Develop a Mutually Beneficial Relationship with Association Conference Speakers – Interviewing a Professional Speaker

Jennifer Schrafft is a Certified Professional Coach who does regular speaking engagements throughout the year. Recently, she participated as a speaker in two association conferences that I managed. I sat down with Jennifer to find out what makes a positive speaking engagement for her and how we can work together to create a mutually beneficial […]