Lunchtime Links: Change, or How the Cookie Crumbles

Looking at the sweeter side of associations, whether old-school or newly hot. Also: What that suggestion box really means.

The times are a-changin’; that much we know. From social media to doing (much) more with (much) less, associations everywhere have had to adapt to their current environment. But just how are you tackling the tough decisions? Are you sticking to what works, or evolving?

That and more in today’s Lunchtime Links:

Associations and their just desserts: Forget about comparing apples to oranges—there’s a much more important food question on executives’ minds. “Is your event an Oreo or a macaron?” A marketing blog explores the sweet treats from the mind of a meeting planner, asking whether your event is an Oreo (stagnant, reliable, but perhaps a bit boring) or a macaron (dynamic, adaptable, pushing the envelope). No matter what your dessert preference in real life, it pays to push the boundaries during conferences and exceed attendee expectations, writes Tahira Endean, CMP, who suggests: Be the macaron. Always be changing, even if your ideas are half-baked (pun intended). How are your conferences adapting to make attendees happy?

Suggestions welcome: Sometimes, we think we’re the best. And while confidence is great, we need humility to realize that sometimes we’re wrong. But before you ask for feedback, make sure you really want it. As Ron Ashkenas writes in Harvard Business Review, “On the one hand, we’ve been taught that feedback in a good thing—we want to hear others’ perspectives since they might help us enrich our thinking … On the other hand, asking for input means that we might have to change plans or do something differently.” So you’re debating on pulling free snacks from the conference room? Should your employees have a say? Ashkenas has a good point: Don’t just ask because society wants you to. Only ask if you’re willing to adapt and change the plan as necessary. How do you handle negative feedback?

A history of social media: It’s no longer a buzzword. “Social media” has become a part of daily routine for nearly every association. Since the first email was sent in 1971, the internet and social media have exploded onto every platform imaginable, from Twitter to Facebook to Wikipedia, creating hundreds of thousands of ways for people across the pond (or the next cubicle over) to connect with one another. But where did it all begin, and where’s it going? This infographic from Social Fish takes you through the times.

What social media channel is most important for your association? What would you do without it? Let us know in the comments.


Chloe Thompson

By Chloe Thompson

Chloe Thompson is a contributing writer to Associations Now. MORE

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