The issues are real. Imminence is becoming urgency. To meet the future, it’s time to transform many associations. That’s why we are putting together a collection of inter-related communities, to identify emerging solutions and bring together professionals and experts in a joint venture to author the future. The vision:

  • Communities of leaders raising the bar
  • A fleet of practice and innovation
  • Forward looking agents of destiny
  • Outside, world-class stimulation
  • Tool-oriented and pragmatic

Association CEOs and Executive Directors need a place where they can think together. They also need help carrying the ball because frankly the day-in day-out work of running an association sometimes takes over. This is why I am spearheading the effort I call Association Transformation. Hence this website.

But, it requires more than association executives. It takes leaders in the various fields that are critical to association success to articulate visions for the future, to stimulate the execs. It needs others who support the exploration of sustainable solutions to provide the provocation that generates stability, strength and growth within the sector. These include business leaders who specialize in

  • The resort and hospitality industry
  • Information Technology and Services
  • Data Analytics
  • Human Resources and benefits
  • Marketing Communications
  • Publishing and content management
  • Executive search and talent development
  • Law (intellectual property, governance, general legal)
  • Financial management and accounting
  • Association Management

That is why part of this effort involves what I call the Business Braintrust. These are the providers who serve the industry and also contribute to the vision of what can be. The idea here is to build communities of visionary leaders focused on crafting the future.

Beyond the larger community of visionary leaders and the Business Braintrust, I am leading CEO Peer Groups. These are small clusters of executives who meet regularly over the course of a year to compare notes and support each other in leading innovation. They provide the intimate engagement required to deep dive into their own organizations and make progress.

So, for starters we have the visionary executives, the Business Braintrust, and the CEO Peer Groups. I imagine there will be other groups as well, perhaps research consortia that attack specific issues like the future of meetings or bold, new experiments in membership models.

I intend Association Transformation to become that gritty, but safe place for leaders to come together, grow, innovate, and generate… a place where real cross-pollination can occur. An ecology of leader communities invested in a common trajectory. Together I hope we can identify the stimulation and research needed to think together and shape the next evolutionary stage of associations.