5 Things I Learned at Holiday Showcase
Holiday Showcase 2020 was unlike any other. This was largely because it was virtual, but the meeting also boasted more education than ever before. Plus, collaborations with various groups in the association industry helped bring the community together in a new way.
In total, Holiday Showcase offered 33 sessions and 11 hours of learning! Here are a few things I learned:
Diversity is the key performance indicator you’re overlooking
Raven Solomon opened Holiday Showcase with her keynote presentation, “Diverse Connections: How Associations Thrive in the Future of Work.” Did you know that diverse teams that act inclusively are two times faster at decision making, make 87% better business decisions and hold half the number of meetings as their counterparts? Solomon presented this research (from decision-making software Cloverpop) and more compelling reasons to make diversity more than just a board statement on your website.
Diversity is quantitative and can be measured by numbers; Inclusion is qualitative and is measured by whether employees or members feel served; and Equity is ensuring that difference is accounted for.
Purchase the recording to view Solomon’s presentation in its entirety.
You can and should connect with your coworkers in a remote workplace
Allison Abayasekara is ASAE’s vice president of learning strategy and engagement. In her session, she offered up a ton of ideas to foster staff connection during remote work. But, she also stressed the importance of filtering your ideas, mapping them to employees to meet personality types or specific needs, and recognizing that there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Because no one activity can meet the social needs of every team member, Abayasekara recommends these activities be optional.
The smattering of options she participates in include virtual coffees, happy hours, and a “just for fun” Slack channel about book recommendations. By offering a smattering of options to connect, ASAE gives opportunities for everyone no matter their home situation. This helps foster not only connection, but also inclusion.
Purchase the recording of Abayasekara’s session, Fostering Staff Connection in a Remote Workplace.
Hybrid meetings can be really cool!
Ryan Konikoff of Rock The House AV presented a packed presentation of ideas and examples for engaging hybrid meetings. He challenged attendees to think of where hybrid events already take place: sports, music festivals and entertainment TV. These industries have been holding hybrid events for a long time (ex: broadcasting a football game to millions of viewers while 50,000 people watch live).
The tips are plenty, but here are the greatest hits:
- Dedicate a host for remote guests
- Edit out onsite announcements and housekeeping that won’t apply to remote guests
- Curate content for remote guests with additional interviews or pre-recorded sessions
- Do some backstage broadcasting to add to the digital experience
- Consider blended presentations, such as a panel where some of the speakers are virtual
Watch Konikoff’s full presentation for more insights and to get his tips on generating revenue to pay for your hybrid meeting!
How to engage members without in-person meetings
Christopher Mundschenk, CAE, and Guilherme Lopes from SmithBucklin represent two very different associations. Mundschenk is executive vice president of the Building Service Contractors Association International (BSCAI), representing business owners, entrepreneurs and corporations who provide contract cleaning, maintenance and security to facilities. BSCAI’s focus on the cleaning industry made it an important player during the pandemic. Mundschenk walked attendees through how the group positioned itself as a resource during this time of crisis. He described them as the “Netflix” of online industry training. Webinars became a viable way to share information and resources with members. Another place to serve members became virtual town halls. These events covered hot topics like PPE and invited members to submit questions to expert panels.
Lopes is executive director of the International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading (ISTAT), a global association for commercial aviation. Of course, ISTAT was hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. Not only was aviation hit hard as an industry, but ISTAT had to cancel nine in-person events. Because the events focus on networking and deal-making, pivoting to virtual wasn’t a good option. Since ISTAT was in a healthy financial situation before the pandemic, they decided to use this time to reinvest in the community. They offered free membership to people who had lost their jobs (which was many due to the industry), they launched learning labs, member chats, and a podcast. They also offered many resources that used to be members-only to the industry at large. They see this as an investment in the industry and a member recruitment tool once aviation begins to come back.
View the full session, No Events? No Worries! How to Add Member Value and Revenue Year-Round.
Make a “do again” bucket list
Michael Levitt of Breakfast Leadership, Inc, began his session by telling us about the worst year of his life. Over the course of 2009-2010, he lost his job, his house, and nearly his life when he had a heart attack. He attributes most of this to burnout and losing sight of a deeper purpose in life. Now, he offers up sound advice on setting boundaries at work and home.
One unique approach Levitt reviewed was creating a “bucket list” of sorts. Instead of writing down all the things you’d like to do before you die, he suggests listing all the things you’ve done that you truly enjoyed and would like to do again. Then he told attendees to write dates next to each item for the last time you did them. This could be as simple as taking a day off to spend with your family, or as big as traveling abroad. He said that most people will be shocked at how long it’s been since they’ve done the things that they find fulfilling. And, he challenged attendees to start doing more things on that list!
View Levitt’s session recording, Burnout Proof Your Association.
Association Forum members can purchase the full bundle of Holiday Showcase recordings for $499. That includes over 30 recordings and 19 CAE credit hours!