Finally! Sweet summertime is upon us (unofficially). School’s out, Summer hours kick in at work and salt air is no longer only in your dreams.
I looked at the group gathered in the lobby for a quick photo shoot. In the mix were members of the marketing team, accounting team, membership coordinators, and assistant executive directors. One common theme for this group was the fact that they were all association professionals. Another element that bonded them was the fact that they were also the first group to earn the new ASAE Certificate in Association Management.
I must tell you, there was a great sense of pride in knowing that I played a role in helping these professionals of varying levels of non-profit experience better understand that they were a critical component to their organization’s success. The courses in the new certificate program helped everyone understand that they weren’t just in a nine-to-five job, they were actually in a profession!
Yes, association management is a true career path, even though most of us working in the field never went to school with this in mind. From the very first day of the first course, “Essential Practices in Association Management,” the session attendees begin to understand the huge umbrella that encompasses member-based associations. They understand, with approximately 90,000 such organizations in existence, they are part of a much larger community! ASAE was effective in weaving in a sampling of the existing research material for the association professional. Attendees clearly related to the research, as the associations within which they work also delivery industry research to members.
While many of the certificate recipients worked in critical support roles of marketing or accounting, they recognized that they also interfaced with volunteer leaders and general members. This was one of those “ah-ha” moments for many, especially those who originally thought the certificate program was only for future association executives.
Effective listening, presentation skills, crisis management, conflict resolution, and decision making were all elements covered in the 5 days of classes and all of these subjects were areas that overlapped with their own unique positions. The attendees shared that they valued the ability to learn from other attendees, almost as much as they valued the actual course curriculum. I must say that after spending more than 30 years working in a wide variety of association management positions, it feels really good to have an opportunity to give back! The sparks that were ignited with the eyes of those attending were real.
Want to hear more about the Certificate Program in Association Management? Maria Huntley, CAE, MANM of IntrinXec Management, Inc. in Minnesota is the ASAE Midwest licensee. Here is a great article about Maria’s first week delivering the classes www.intrinxec.com/asaeu/asaeu_blog.html.
Topics: ASAE Certificate