When folks hear about outsourcing, a fear immediately arises: how can they do what we do? And when it’s an association, the fear is even more specific: how can they do what we do as an association?
Certain checkpoints have to happen when a corporation has a new idea, wants to take a new direction, or chooses to embark on a new focus area. Maybe it’s the owner’s blessing, perhaps it’s a board of advisors majority vote, and sometimes it may even be enough support from the company employees willing to execute. Regardless of the authority and subsequent process, the decision at its core is “does this help make the company successful?” For the world of associations, it goes further and has a few more questions to answer when defining success.
For an association to make a change, add a program, invest in a new effort, the idea of “can it be successful” is only a part of the pie. The other part is how this decision will influence the industry and what it will bring to the members. To move forward, the association must speak to purpose, execution, industry influence, and long-term impacts for the association’s membership. Whether that membership approval is through a board or a vote by the membership body, maybe it is spearheaded by a few specific members, making it a different sort of project. Accountability on a large scale isn’t something that has to be managed based on how the project performs in the market BUT what it means to the “owners” of the association – the members.
Associations that are well managed and successful learn to live in the perfect balance of membership support and board approval, but with enough autonomy for association staff to be empowered to get the work done. Those who do it well are respected by their board, supported by their members, and fuel the future success of the association AND the industry it represents. This unique world is only truly understood by those who have navigated it – and ideally well.
When an association partners with TMC, they not only choose to outsource – they are connecting with experienced association professionals. We are not just skilled at membership development, strong in sponsorship sales, and experienced in retention – these are folks who truly understand the delicate balance associations must maintain to be successful. Our team can help your team remain focused on the goals for the industry while enhancing member programs or event sponsorship. We can provide access to the types of research needed when exploring new areas because we know the level of detail you will need to share with your board and membership. Outsourcing doesn’t have to include fears. In fact, the right team can lead to freedom to focus more, knowing the areas you have shared are in good hands.
If you would like to learn more about how we can support your association or the team’s experience that you could be working with, contact us today.
Jackie Bessette | Business Development Manager
With extensive association and communications experience, Jackie spearheads new growth initiatives and membership and sponsorship campaigns for our association clients. A graduate of George Mason University, she formerly was the Membership Development Manager at the Door and Hardware Institute (DHI), where she launched the successful DHI “Corporate Membership Tier Program” generating hundreds of new members – and served as the lead on all membership development activities: research, outreach, marketing, and onboarding.
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