When the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors created its new strategic plan, it sought member input. The result: a plan focused on member growth, brand amplification, and great member experiences.
You’re probably familiar with the famous adage, “There are only three things that matter in real estate: location, location, location.” And if asked to pick the three things that matter to the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors after seeing its new strategic plan, your response would likely be members, members, members.
“Every membership association should be focused on one thing: members,” said NAIFA CEO Kevin Mayeux. The organization finalized its strategic plan for 2021-2025 early this year. The new plan has three primary focuses: membership growth, brand amplification, and member experience.
“We want to make sure every person has a high-quality experience, that we are doing the best to contribute to their professional development, that we are helping to prepare them to be more successful as a professional, and that we provide them with the right environment so they can be successful,” Mayeux said.
The brand amplification goal comes because the organization restructured, bringing together state and local chapters that had previously been “quasi-independent.” Even that focus on “brand” is still about members—as it’s designed to ensure continuity of quality for members.
“We needed to make sure that our brand is consistent and represents the same sort of quality all across the country,” Mayeux said. “When people see our logo and hear our name, they should understand what we stand for. That is ensuring every insurance and financial advisor gets the right training and support and can operate in the right environment so they can better serve their clients.”
Members were involved in creating the plan, with NAIFA collecting their input during town hall meetings. “We had an exposure period where we could hear their thoughts and concerns and suggestions,” Mayeux said. “We also let everyone know when they sent a suggestion what happened with their suggestion. Was it incorporated? Was it adopted? Was it already addressed in another section? We made sure that they knew their perspective was heard and taken into account.”
Asking for input on the strategic plan has also paid dividends for future engagement. “The feedback we’ve gotten from our chapter leaders has been tremendous,” Mayeux said. “Many of them have asked: What can we do at the chapter level—whether that be state or local—to implement this plan and do our part to help move this forward?”
In terms of moving it forward, NAIFA staff has developed an implementation roadmap that sets concrete goals. “We have taken our strategic plan and sequenced that out to figure out what sorts of things do we need to do between now and the end of 2025 to get us to where our membership wants to be,” Mayeux said. “We have built our budgets, our staff goals, our accountability goals, and implementation of the plan.”
Because the membership was involved in creating the plan, Mayeux wants to keep that same energy moving forward. “To assure transparency and accountability, we will report back to our membership on a quarterly basis as to our progress,” he said. “If we are on target, we will let them know. If we encounter some obstacles, we’ll disclose that as well, and we’ll talk about what our plan is to make sure we’re on track.”