My husband drove his 1969 Camero to work today. During the commute, someone in a car on the other side of the road yelled “NICE” at him. We have found this is not at all abnormal. In intersections, waiting at stop lights, and in parking lots, the car draws attention, and it makes us approachable.
It is incredible how many pedestrians will chit-chat with us as they are walking by and we are waiting to pull out. But they only talk with us when we are in the Camero. If we were to recreate the scene in our everyday vehicles, window open, waiting to pull out, there would be no chit-chat with passersby.
Driving the Camero is fun for us, partially because it does make us so approachable. Being approachable can be fun for association staff too and, high staff approachability can improve member engagement.
How approachable do your think members think the association is? How approachable is the staff? How approachable are you?
We signal our approachableness.
Staff standing in a tight group talking is not approachable, but that same person standing alone and smiling is approachable.
A staff person hurrying down the hall head buried in their cell phone is not approachable. A staff person mingling with members in the hall is approachable.
Staff teams clustering together during board meetings makes them less approachable. Staff sitting among the board members are more approachable.
Unreturned voicemail and email tells us staff is unapproachable. Calls answered right away signals approachability.
CEO’s who cling tightly to their president can mean they are unapproachable. CEO’s who entertain the president while introducing the president to others shows approachability.
Before members truthfully share what is in their hearts and on their minds they have to feel the association staff is approachable.