Dr. Elliott B. Jaffa


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A Check Up From the Neck Up: A 00s Quiz for Association Executives

[Article List]

Has your association...

  1. A marketing plan in writing, one that is shared with your whole staff? If not, then how does you're total staff know what you want to accomplish?

  2. Increased business by 20%? If not, why? The economy is great. Your members will write checks for value, be it conferences, education, publications, products, and services they feel they need and will make their life and job easier.

  3. Put on a distance learning event? If not, distance learning can reach the majority of your membership that never attends your annual meeting... plus make money.

  4. Gotten into the e-commerce business? If not, realize that an active e-commerce web site is open for business 24 hours a day. Your local shopping mall closes at 9:00 PM.

  5. Developed and maintain an interactive web site? If not, you're keeping your members from frequent visits for the latest industry news and developments: how their dues are working for them.

  6. Conducted a focus group of your members, exhibitors, and sponsors to identify new directions, challenges, and concerns? If not, then how do you know what's on the minds of your "best" customers?

  7. Rolled out at least two new value-added programs for your members? If not, then what have you done new and creative lately? Auto, computer, and electronics manufacturers add new bells and whistles every year. Why haven't you?

  8. Is your member obsession impeccable? If not, then your members will only remember the "hassle" rather than all of the wonderful things you've done for them lately.

  9. A CTO, Chief Technical Officer, as part of your management team? If not, who evaluates all of the software options out there, responds to the daily hits on your web site, or makes your association technology-friendly?

  10. Adopted a "dot com" mentality with a short decision-making cycle? Ask yourself, where's the renegade, visionary, and innovation in you to make your cash register ring?


8-10 You're innovative, creative, and appear to continually reinvent what you're doing. You're running a top-notch organization and are a true asset to your membership, board, and staff.
5-7 You're doing something right. Push your envelope to be doing more.
3-4 Time to be doing something new and different. "Same old-same old" doesn't play well in the 00s.
0-2 You're running an old geezer association. Stop thinking like Acme Buggy Whip and more like AOL.

Dr. Elliott B. Jaffa
(703) 931-0040