Associations usually thrive when there is a strong community. Competitiveness can break down the community. Collaboration builds up the community.
But sometimes we fight an uphill battle because many workplaces foster competitiveness. There’s only so much of the budget, promotion, grant, and visible project pie to go around. The first, best, most persuasive colleague wins. It doesn’t take long for a professional to learn the competitiveness game.
Associations are an extension of work, so it may feel natural for some members to bring competitive behaviors to the community. When new members arrive, not only do we have to show them what the association is for, we may also need to demonstrate how to behave within the community.
Modeling open, generous, and kind behaviors are one great way to welcome new members to the association community. A weekly public new member welcome can foster a sense of community. I’ve seen staff personally connect members to get a new member’s question answered. A hearty hello and welcome from a long-time member can also get a new member on the right path.
Think about how to model the member culture you would like to see.
The 2020 New Member Engagement Study is open, and we would love to hear from you! What does your association do to welcome members? Spend 10 minutes, letting us know, and we will send you a ton of valuable data! Participate here.