Lunchtime Links: For Those Second-Guessing Tech

Technology may be a key part of what makes associations tick, but if you don't see immediate results, you may be quick to second-guess its value. A few key association bloggers suggest why you shouldn't.

Find yourself rethinking your association’s relationship with technology? You aren’t alone. It happens. But before you give up on it, some thoughts from a few association bloggers:

What? You haven’t been doing these things? Then you haven’t really tried social.

Problems with getting social? Sure, if you’ve tried it and it doesn’t work, give up on it, Christina G. Smith, the director of inbound marketing at, suggests. But her premise flips on its head as she points out the many efforts you might not be putting forth to reach your members. “What? You haven’t been doing these things? Then you haven’t really tried social,” she says. Sneaky.

Problems with automation? Maybe you shouldn’t automate, Wes Trochlil of Effective Database Management suggests. “As much as I LOVE technology, sometimes technology solutions are NOT better than the manual processes we’re using,” he writes. “And this is true for all of our processes, especially as they relate to data management.” Trochlil specifically points out that personal-planning software has never really worked for him.

Problems with IT departments? Perhaps, as consultant Jacob Morgan says, you should view your IT department as the change agent, not the thing holding your association back. “I’m not saying that IT needs to be solely responsible for collaboration initiatives, but that business managers can see IT as a way to help make this change instead of seeing them as a roadblock in the way of this change,” Morgan, the principal of Chess Media Group, explains.

Problems integrating technology? Maybe you need to start treating tech as the basis for your association’s work. You know, the way Hamburger Helper lets you do more with the ingredients you have in your refrigerator, as Moira Edwards, CAE, president of Ellipsis Partners explains on SocialFish: “We’re starting to use technology to connect…with others through private social networking sites. But what if we actually were to use technology to help them do their daily jobs?”

Finding tech to be a bit of a roadblock these days? Tell us how and why in the comments.

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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