Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Tuesday Wins

Neighbors complained about our dog barking, which we heard about from a policeman who came to our door at 9 pm.

We ordered an anti-bark collar and invisible fence last night.

GoGo can now get out of the crib on her own and wants to sleep with us.

Woke up multiple times last night from her wanting to sleep with us and trying to get her to go back to her bed.

No dice. The morning alarm was her little feet kicking my spleen.

This morning we discovered one car was broken into last night with our GPS stolen (3rd time this has happened).

I have a sore throat and I want to move.

Tuesday...you win. I'm calling in sick and resting.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

KiKi's Top Five ASAE 2010 Annual Conference Experiences

It's hard for me to begin to explain how amazing the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) Annual Meeting really was. I've spent the past two hours on the plane coming back from LA with the desire to write this blog post, but not knowing where to start. The reason is I am still processing everything that happened and all of the meaningful contacts and conversations I had over the past several days.

One thing I can do is talk about a few of my favorite experiences from the conference. I'll likely go into greater detail on some of these in later posts, but here is a quick sampling.

My Top Five ASAE Conference Experiences:
  1. Celebrating joining DelCor Technology Solutions (I met the DelCor crew at #ASAE09)
  2. Recording the first Social Media Sweet Spot with a LIVE audience
  3. Dancing in the YAP Flashmob on the Expo Floor
  4. Meeting friends from Twitter and Facebook in person (and not meeting Jeff Hurt in person for the first time while wearing my metallic gold leotard!)
  5. Jumping into the Westin Bonaventure hotel fountain on the final night
I feel motivated, challenged, inspired, and will be posting more about this amazing conference in upcoming days. All I can say is it feels good to belong to a supportive community and I think that's what we should all strive to create for our associations' members, clients, vendors, and online friends. But there is room for improvement (I'll be exploring the relationship between state associations in future posts).

Note: Not on my list of great experiences at ASAE 2010? The "Guilt by Association" sitcom shared at general sessions. Great concept, but not well-received, in general (at least not by the people around me...). They liked members being involved, but thought the laugh track was just one thing that pushed it into overkill.

Do you agree or disagree?

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Metallic Gold Leotard and Jeff Hurt

My mother regrets not putting me in dance class when I was a little girl. She admits that now, but for years I secretly blamed it on her for thinking I was too fat for a leotard. Actually, it wasn't a secret. She said, "Kylee [my younger sister] is just built more like a dancer" which, let's be honest, translates into, "You're just too fat to be a dancer, sweetie." I, instead, took piano lessons.

Nevertheless, nothing could stop me from embarrassing myself by putting on the record player outside (and then the tape player and then the CD player - technology progressed like mad while I was a kid) and dancing wildly on the back porch, emulating the movements of the Solid Gold dancers. I imagined a tour bus would get stranded and some famous person would stumble across me dancing in the middle of Nowhere, Missouri, and would say, "Hey...kid! You have talent! Get on the bus - I'll make you a star!"

I had that dream, the Sweet Valley Twins book series, a little sister, and a latchkey. Those were the days of Kool-Aid and Pringles.

Fast forward to this week and me receiving my shipment of dance wear in the mail. Inside the box was a metallic gold leotard, black stirrup tights, legwarmers, an off-the-shoulder midriff baring tee sporting "Dance" across the front in rainbow colors and sparkles, and a petticoat tiered black tricot skirt. Flashes of the Solid Gold dancers came into my mind as I visualized arriving at the DelCor booth (#226) for the American Society of Association Executives Annual Meeting (#ASAE10) wearing my new 80s inspired ensemble. A girl's dream realized on a 33-year-old's body. *sigh*

The theme for our booth is retro and so the plan was to dress from the 60s through 80s with a remembrance for old technology and nudge to attendees that if their technology at work looks like what we have in the booth, they may need some good advice. ;-) [DelCor provides technology consulting, so this isn't an entirely random message.]

Along with all of the excitement going on for the booth, there is an amazing amount of other fun stuff going on at ASAE10, too. For instance, I'm doing a Social Media Sweet Spot web show with my good friend and regular co-host Maddie Grant with a live audience from the conference. There will be council meetings, parties, learning sessions and a flash mob.

More importantly, there will also be a large number of people I admire and have corresponded with online whom I will have the chance to meet face-to-face for the first time ever at this meeting. Which brings me to Jeff Hurt.
This is an illustration of Jeff Hurt.
If you are not aware of who Jeff Hurt is, check it out:

  • Prolific and respected blogger 
  • Mastermind in the events industry
  • Leader of awesomeness in the association realm
  • Social Media All Around Cool Dude
  • One of my online heroes
Jeff Hurt will be at ASAE10 and I will have the chance to finally meet and talk with him in person. I'll also be meeting Garry Polamateer, Lauren Fernandez, Christine Melendes, and a whole bunch of other cool folks I like and I hope will continue to like me. Even in my gold leotard.

So you see, the past, present, and future are colliding for me at ASAE10. My friends who are knowledgeable about physics might argue that this is already the case, that the idea of linear time is a fallacy and so I need not worry. 

Then I look at my shiny gold leotard and think that even physics can't help me now.


Friday, August 13, 2010

Is That All There Is?

Professional societies and trade associations are amazing. People who aren't aware of the inner workings of these organizations miss out. Even people who are a part of the the inner workings of associations sometimes miss out. That's because while the members of an association have a clear understanding of why they belong, the people who are not members usually aren't even aware such organizations exist. If they are aware, they have no reason to let the knowledge sink in because the associations doesn't impact their lives immediately.

Members connect with other members and keep in touch with pertinent information in their industries. Sometimes they are fighting for a law that will impact their bottom line. Sometimes members are sharing technical knowledge to improve scientific understanding. Sometimes members are looking for their next job from their association.

But is that all there is?

Rather than be disillusioned with cynical ideas that some associations' members are only getting charged more and more for less and less, I prefer to focus on the positive works happening with organizations focusing on ways to give back to members and all of society. I do not believe the traditional association model is all there is.

Recent association news indicates a renewed interest in bringing association members together to help make the world a better place. More "Kumbaya" than existentialist "Is That All There Is", this post, and this post, and this post make me believe we can all help each other and ourselves by putting creative thinking and positive action together on projects focused on sharing our strengths to improve society around us. 

What do you think?  Are associations changing the way they do business?  Should philanthropy be on every organization's agenda?  Please share your thoughts!

Monday, August 9, 2010