Association Brain Food Weekly: 3.20.20

Free professional development resources and events for CAEs, association staff and others in the association community

The weekly list of free educational events and resources for the association community…

Free professional development resources and events for CAEs, association staff and others in the association community

Is it over yet? Wow, has this been the longest week ever or what? I’ve got more to share than usual—I think that might be a pattern for a while.

Virtual strategy meetings. As the new COVID-19 reality descended upon us, Lowell Aplebaum was in Chicago to facilitate a strategy session. Since half the participants chose to stay home it turned into a virtual/hybrid meeting. He shares useful lessons learned on virtual strategy facilitation.

Conference sponsorships. Associations are already taking a huge financial hit by having to cancel conferences. Don’t think your only option is refunding sponsor fees. Bruce Rosenthal says there’s a better approach to working with conference sponsors.

Emerging member needs. WBT Systems points out a whole new set of emerging member needs, like the craving for connection and community—I think we can all agree with that. Members also need vetted information and guidelines related to their new topsy-turvy world, including resources for wellbeing and remote work. And speaking of remote work…

Remote work. Rebecca Achurch of Achurch Consulting published a comprehensive (and free) e-book on preparing your association technically and mentally for virtual work during the COVID-19 crisis. She’s a remote work guru so it’s as good as you’d expect—that is, excellent.

Remote workers, hey, that’s you. Beth Zienesis aka Your Nerdy Best Friend created a new Facebook group for The Unexpected Telecommuters. She’s posting videos and resources, and, knowing Beth, probably instigating a lot of hilarity and proving a lot of support too. Join in if you’ve found yourself unexpectedly telecommuting.

Goodness within suckiness. Mark Schaefer is losing business all over the place because of COVID-19. See how he’s attempting to create opportunities out of chaos, you might get some ideas.

Reluctant volunteers. Once we can be socially close again, members will be more than ready to hang out with others in their association. Maybe even volunteer, maybe. MemberSuite describes the questions and thoughts that go through a member’s mind when they’re deciding whether or not to volunteer.

Crackling events. Members seek interaction, connections, and community as well as memorable learning experiences from chapter events. Even though events may not be on the horizon for your chapters, many of the key concepts discussed in this Billhighway post will add snap, crackle and pop to virtual as well as in-person events.

Help feed kids—and others in a bad spot. If you follow me on social media, you know I’m a huge advocate of food banks. Because so many kids rely on school breakfast and lunch as their nutrition for the day, there’s no better time to support your local food bank. You can find yours on the Feeding America website.

If you’re in North Carolina, your donation to the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina goes even further this month. Thanks to a matching pledge, every $1 you donate in March provides 10 meals. Skip the cans, send money, please.

Quick hits before we get to the list of this week’s free education:

  • Yes, you can stop scrolling coronavirus news for like 5 minutes. (Kara Cutruzzula, Forge)
  • How to talk to your friends about social distancing when they’re going to bars—or participating in other nonsense. (Caroline Kitchener, The Lily)
  • In the company of two miniature horses, Arnold says, “Stay at home as much as possible. Listen to the experts, ignore the morons (foreheads). We will get through this together.” Thanks, Arnold. (Arnold Schwarzenegger on Twitter)
  • Penguins on an unchaperoned field trip in the Shedd Aquarium. More please! (Good Morning America, YouTube)

Good eats—skip down to the list of free webinars if you’re not into cooking:

  • Here’s an easy and excellent recipe: sheet pan harissa salmon with potatoes and citrus. I used blackfin tuna instead, but any sturdy fish will do, or chicken. Check out the comments for more ideas. I added carrots like someone suggested, and since I didn’t have quite enough harissa, I supplemented it with red curry paste. By the way, harissa is a North African chile and spice paste.
  • On Sunday, I made enough shepherd’s pie so we could have it again on St. Patrick’s Day. My recipe is from The Irish Pub Cookbook by Margaret Johnson. This was the second time I made it—so good. If you need a comfort food meal, give it a try—or find yourself a recipe online. Shepherd’s pie is made with ground lamb (our favorite) and cottage pie is made with ground beef—just so you know.
  • That’s it – lots of leftovers and sautéed greens, of course, with cabbage in the mix.

Here are the educational events scheduled for next week. Check in during the week for updates. Every day this past week, I updated the list with new COVID-19 related events—something I never usually do because, well, time. But these are not normal times. Stay safe, stay well, take care.

If you have any free webinars or events coming up, please send me the link. I’ll be happy to feature it as long as it’s not product-centric.

Fri 3/20 at 1 p.m.* – Ask Me Anything, How to Transition Your In-Person Event to a Virtual Event

Many organizations are being forced to transition their in-person events into virtual ones. Event organizers and education leaders may have questions about how to pull off this switch effectively and smoothly. Get answers to any questions you have, from re-purposing content to meet the needs of your learners to translating your on-site experience to an online platform. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: CommPartners


  • Tracy King, CEO and Chief Learning Strategist of InspirEd
  • Kate Ratcliffe, CMP, CommPartners Marketing Manager and former virtual event producer

*All times are Eastern Daylight Savings Time unless otherwise noted.

Fri 3/20 at 2 p.m. – Remote Work During COVID-19: Human Resource and Technology Considerations

In this time of crisis, many associations have decided that all staff members will need to work remotely for a while to protect their health and well-being. These decisions were made quickly, and some organizations had little time to put the right systems in place. In addition to ensuring that the necessary technology tools are available, managers need to communicate information about project workflow and set clear guidelines and expectations for employees. Learn about key considerations for managing your staff and technology needs through the COVID-19 crisis. Connect with colleagues to explore best practices that you can employ. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: ASAE


  • Rick Bawcum, CEO, CIMATRI
  • Larry Covert, Senior Director, Information Technology, ASAE
  • Sara Curtis, MBA, SPHR, CAE, Director of Human Resources, American Society of Anesthesiologists
  • Todd Tolbert, MBA, CAE, Chief Digital Strategy Officer, ASIS International
  • Sara Curtis (moderator), MBA, SPHR, CAE, Director of Human Resources, American Society of Anesthesiologists

Fri 3/20 at 2 p.m. – Talking Money: Cancellations, Refunds, Oh My!

Whether it’s refunds, postponements, or changing budgets, money tends to be the first thing people want to negotiate on, but the last thing they’re comfortable discussing. Learn ways to boost your confidence and get into an empowering and helpful money mindset. More info/register.

Host/Presenter: Certified Professional Behavior Analyst, Rachel Sheerin

Sun 3/22 at 3 p.m. – Finding Your Personal Power in Times of Uncertainty (Webinars for Good Series)

In our new series, Webinars for Good, we provide you with daily free one-hour webinars to help you adjust to a virtual environment, grow in professional acumen, and cope with the hypercomplexity we are currently facing. More info/register.

Host: Ubiquity University

Presenter: Lindsey Foreman

Mon 3/23 at 2 p.m. – How to Prepare for Recession: An Association Leaders Strategy Guide

It is very possible that we are headed into difficult economic times, and increasingly possible, a recession. What actions can help association leaders lead effectively in industries of all kinds? Hear how leaders can best prepare for a recession, how you should think through crisis management for your organizations, how associations have gone from terrible to great during a crisis in the past, and what is the best next thing you can do for your association right now. More info/register.

Host: KiKi L’Italien, senior consultant, Tecker International, and founder, Amplified Growth

Guest: Glenn Tecker, co-CEO of Tecker International

Tue 3/24 at 10 a.m. – FACILIT8me: Navigating the Virtual Environment

Given the current effects of COVID-19 on daily operations, many of us are transitioning our face-to-face facilitated events to online platforms. To aid in your planning and design work, we’re offering a special 90-minute digital discussion focused on navigating the virtual environment. This time will be focused on how to translate your facilitation toolbox in a digital medium. More info/register.

Host: Event Garde LLC

Facilitators: Aaron Wolowiec, Chief Executive Officer, and Lindsay Gross, Director, Facilitation Services, Event Garde LLC

Tue 3/24 at 12 p.m. – How and Why to Transition from Conference Sponsorships to Year-long Partnerships (Partnership Professionals Network Idea Exchange)

Many associations have a long history of a successful conference sponsorship program. However, times are changing! Many companies are saying they would prefer a year-long partnership …. not a three-day event sponsorship. This Partnership Professionals Network Idea Exchange brown bag lunch discussion and strategy session will address how and why to transition from conference sponsorships to year-long partnerships. More info/register.

Organizer: Partnership Professionals Network

Tue 3/24 at 12:30 p.m. – How to Use Impact Mapping to Thrive in a Crisis

Hear how to navigate an emergency situation with impact mapping. Greg will bring his experience finding opportunities in crisis and show you how to use this tool so you can too. More info/register.

Host: .orgCommunity

Presenter: Greg Larkin, founder of Bowery315, Head of Product Innovation at Spring Lab, and Senior Advisor at Dream See Do.

Tue 3/24 at 1 p.m. – COVID-19 Impact on Credentialing Practices

The spread of COVID-19 has had a strong impact on all industries. As news changes every day, we recognize that this is a challenging time as you navigate deadlines, questions from certificants, and process concerns. ICE is opening up this dialogue to determine what credentialing bodies should be asking related to impacts on the business practices most at risk. Hear how other organizations are adapting to these unexpected times. Share your thoughts and concerns as well as suggestions on how to respond to your certificants, applicants and volunteers. More info/register.

Host: Institute for Credentialing Excellence

Discussion leaders:

  • William M. Ellis MS, RPh, Executive Director, Board of Pharmacy Specialties
  • Julia Judish, JD,Special Counsel, Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
  • Sara Blair Lake, JD, CAE, CEO, International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners
  • Lisa Sallstrom, CAE, PMP, Vice President of Certification and Membership at the Association for Supply Chain Management
  • Karen Plaus, PhD, CRNA, FAAN, CAE, CEO, National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists
  • Denise Roosendaal (facilitator), CAE, ICE Executive Director
  • Nicholas Soto (facilitator), ICE Board Chair

Tue 3/24 at 1 p.m. – COVID-19 Disruptor: The New Normal for Event and Meeting Planners

Has the Coronavirus panic thrown your entire schedule or business off track? Are you wondering what the best message to send out to your attendees, vendors, speakers, sponsors and everyone else involved is? Do you feel lost in the middle of it all and unsure about what to do next? We’ll answer any questions you have about how to communicate about your event…the best way to react and respond to new developments…how to restore and retain a great relationship with attendees and others…and much more. More info/register.

Host: When & How


  • Former FBI Hostage Negotiator Chip Massey
  • Crisis Communications Expert Adele Cehrs
  • Adult Learning Expert Jeff Hurt

Tue 3/24 at 2 p.m. – A Very Interesting Quarantine

Most of your team working from home? Suddenly working with a remote audience and wondering how to liven things up? Need to boost engagement and camaraderie with virtual teams and members while practicing “social distancing?” Learn how to encourage engagement and collaboration for your virtual meetings attendees or remote staff with this fun way to learn more about others and keep things interesting. More info/register.

Host: KiKi L’Italien, senior consultant, Tecker International, and founder, Amplified Growth

Guest: Deedre Daniel

CANCELLED: Tue 3/24 at 2 p.m. – Connectors Redefined: Integrations Done Right

As SaaS applications continue to grow exponentially, the term “Connector” is frequently used and often misunderstood. Learn some of the challenges and best practices. While an iPaaS makes integration development easier, find out why the basics, like requirements gathering, is still critical. More info/register.

Hosts: ReviewMyAMS and ShuffleLabs

Tue 3/24 at 2 p.m. – The Trouble Trifecta: Attrition, Cancellation, and Force Majeure

Whether you’re concerned about coronavirus, cyclones, or indecisive senior execs messing with your conference plans, the best line of defense is a well written contract that will protect your organization when the unforeseen or unimaginable happens. Review three critical clauses—attrition, cancellation, and force majeure. Find out what a fair clause looks like and the most common mistakes meeting planners make in the negotiations with their hotel partners. 1 CMP credit. More info/register.

Host: MeetingsNet

Presenter: Barbara Dunn, Partner, Barnes & Thornburg

Wed 3/25 at 12 p.m. – Content Forum Community Chat/NTC Birds of a Feather Virtual Roundtable

Join your fellow Content Forum members for collegial support, to share what you are working on, and for advice with any professional and personal challenges you are facing with COVID-19. Join first, then look in Events.

Host: Content Forum

Wed 3/25 at 1 p.m. – Risk Management Primer: How to Protect Your Attendees and Organization From Disaster

Learn the most critical yet practical steps to developing a risk management strategy for all types of events, and also critical information about dealing with the current coronavirus pandemic. More info/register.

Host: Meetings Today

Presenter: Brenda Rivers, JD, HMCC, CIS, Founder and Strategic Consultant,
Andavo Meetings & Incentives, and SAFE

Wed 3/25 at 2 p.m. – 6 Non-Dues Revenue Opportunities Hidden in Your AMS

While average associations get the biggest chunk of annual revenue from membership dues, reliance on dues revenue is waning. According to the last ASAE Foundation’s Association Operating Ratio Report, over the last 65 years, the percentage of association revenue from dues has plummeted from 95.7% to 45.4% for trade associations and 30% for professional societies. Learn about the top 6 non-dues revenue opportunities you can utilize from an optimized AMS. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Hosts: ReviewMyAMS and Altai Systems

Presenter: Teri Carden, Founder of ReviewMyAMS and 100 Reviews

Thu 3/26 at 12 p.m. – What to Consider When You’re Considering an AMC for Government Relations and Advocacy

Hear from a panel of experts about how associations can work with AMCs to represent their interests before policymakers. Leveraging best practices and case studies, attendees will understand how associations and AMCs can partner to advance the interests of associations and their members in today’s fast-moving political ecosystem. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Hosts: AMC Professionals Advisory Council and the ASAE Government Relations and Advocacy Professionals Advisory Council


  • Paul Miller, President and CEO, Miller/Wenhold
  • Elissa Myers, Senior Director, Virtual, Inc.
  • Alfons Westgeest, Managing Partner, Kellen
  • Anne DeSeta DarConte, CAE, Managing Director, HillStaffer
  • Tommy Goodwin (moderator), Head of Government Relations, Project Management Institute

Thu 3/26 at 12 p.m. – Impact and Actions – Events and Coronavirus Round Table

Hear about the impact the coronavirus is having and how exhibitors and organizers can respond to recent developments. Learn how to manage the coming weeks and months amidst the changing events dynamic, keep your team and visitors safe during future events, and restart your events strategy to get the best results in 2020 and beyond. More info/register.

Host: Integrate Events


  • Alex Theuma, Founder of SaaStock
  • Colleen Leary, Senior Marketing Events Manager at Alert Logic
  • Chris Wickson, GM of Integrate Events

Thu 3/26 at 12 p.m. – Psychological Safety in the Face of Uncertainty

Navigating uncertainty is a fundamental human challenge; uncertainty can be both ungrounding and frightening. An expert panel will be sharing their personal experiences of how they are deepening psychological safety through challenging times, and how they are equipping people leaders to do the same for their teams. Panelists will be taking your questions and sharing their road tested experience of creating clarity, connection, and community. More info/register.

Host: 15Five

Thu 3/26 at 12 p.m. – 6 Tips for Improving the Member Digital Experience

Our members are so used to using online services that the level of performance, service and access has retrained them to expect more from ALL the brands they interact with—including your organization. Not every organization can afford to provide member services like a global company. However, we must understand how the quality of the digital experience has changed. Learn about the changing expectations of association members and how to select the right combination of technologies and tactics to help your organization stand out, build awareness and grow engagement online. More info/register.

Host: Protech Associates

Presenter: Rob Bean, chief strategist at Refactored

Thu 3/26 at 12:30 p.m. – Moving from Brick and Mortar to a Virtual Office Quickly

Hear lessons learned about moving to a collaborative virtual environment. AACE already had some remote workers but expedited their transition to a full virtual office due to COVID-19. More info/register.

Host: .orgCommunity


  • Sherry Budziak, CEO of .orgSource
  • Travis Cheatham, Director of Technology Operations and Digital Solutions with the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE)

POSTPONED TO 5/21: Thu 3/26 at 1 p.m. – What Two Years of Technology Assessments Reveal About Association IT

Hear about the five top areas for improvement in the technology domains of data, digital, infrastructure, and management. More info/register.

Host: DelCor Technology Solutions

Presenters: Mike Guerrieri and Dan Lautman, DelCor Technology Solutions

Thu 3/26 at 1 p.m. – How To Go Virtual While Still Creating an Engaging Experience

Learn about providing value virtually, captivating members diversely, satisfying members’ networking needs, and designing for an optimized virtual-first experience. More info/register.

Host: Matchbox Virtual Media


  • Graham Harvey, Chief Strategy Officer, Matchbox Virtual Media
  • Allen Lloyd, CAE, Executive Director, Montana Society of CPAs
  • Arianna Rehak, CEO & Co-Founder, Matchbox Virtual Media
  • Jeff Cobb, Managing Director, Tagoras

Thu 3/26 at 1 p.m. – Speaker Showcase: Spring 2020

This webinar brings together speakers, executives, and planners in a unique virtual setting where those doing the hiring can see and hear a variety of speakers in just one hour from the convenience of – anywhere! Some of our speakers will be available to live chat with attendees on the spot so if you see someone you want to lock-in for an upcoming event, you can start the conversation right then and there. More info/register.

Host: ReviewMySpeaker

Tue 3/26 at 1:30 p.m. – Data Integration: It Doesn’t Have to be Fancy

Your fancy data warehouse won’t do much if you don’t have a clear strategy about what you collect, and good data hygiene to make sure data is clean and complete. Learn how to create data strategies and practices that are essential to data integration, whether you are managing multiple databases or multiple excel spreadsheets. More info/register.

Host: Inciter

Presenters: Taj Carson and Jacob Joseph, Inciter

Thu 3/26 at 2 p.m. – Online Communities for Member Self-Service and Member Management

Given the current pandemic and the cancellation of NTEN’s annual conference (NTC), we have decided to offer our NTC session as a webinar and have updated the content to address how nonprofits and associations can leverage online communities during this unprecedented global crisis. More info/register.

Host: Fionta

Thu 3/26 at 2 p.m. – Member Engagement: Creating the Member Experience

The decision to remain a member comes down to more than the quality of the product or program purchased — it is about the experience that surrounds the interaction. The value opportunities you create for your member should be expressed not as a list on a brochure, but as targeted solutions that can help them wherever they may be in their career. This webinar will challenge you to think about new approaches to create an experience that will deepen the connection with (and increase the retention rate of) your members. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: Member Clicks

Presenter: Lowell Aplebaum, CAE, CPF, CEO and Strategy Catalyst, Vista Cova

Thu 3/26 at 2 p.m. – Virtual Association Roundtable: Navigating Upcoming Events

Are you challenged with how to move forward with your events during this rapidly evolving time of travel and meeting restrictions? Hear how your association colleagues are already implementing innovative solutions as their organizations are cancelling in-person events. The panel will share their first-hand experience with tackling these challenges and finding solutions – from communications strategies to moving to virtual events, and more. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: Results Direct


  • Beth Arritt, American Association of Airport Executives
  • Alicia Roundy, Mortgage Bankers Association
  • Aydan Savaser, Secured Finance Network
  • Zané Mullins, Virginia Society of CPAs
  • Dan Scheeler, CAE, EVP, Client Engagement, Results Direct l RD Web
  • Michael Jones, VP, Mobile Technologies, Results Direct l RD Mobile

Thu 3/26 at 2 p.m. – Coronavirus and The President’s Budget

With President Trump’s budget released, 12 subcommittees have begun meeting to determine the federal budget for 2021 and what will stay and what will go. However, with the spread of COVID-19 and the untold toll of this virus, everything across the country is shifting to focus on how to manage this international crisis. We have the insights you need to see how the federal budget will impact your industry and organization, and how COVID-19 will affect the president’s budget. More info/register.

Host: FiscalNote


  • Bruce Mehlman, Founder, Mehlman Castagnetti Rosen & Thomas
  • Jennifer Shutt, Budget and Appropriations Reporter, CQ Roll Call
  • Chris Lu, Senior Strategy Advisor, FiscalNote

Thu 3/26 at 2 p.m. – Rise of the Event Technologist

By creating the event technologist role, an organization can benefit from having a single individual devoted to aligning event needs with technology to deliver on KPIs and more. Learn about trends defining the rise of the event technologist, how to build out the role of the event technologist, benefits of insourcing vs. outsourcing, and what it takes to become an event technologist. More info/register.

Host: Cvent

Presenters: Taylor Bohn, Senior Event Technology Analyst, and Alyssa Peltier, Manager, Event Marketing, Cvent

Tue 3/31 at 3 p.m. – Personas & User Journey Mapping: Getting to Know Your Website’s Users & Journey Through Your Site

Developing a successful, user-centric website starts with knowing who is actually coming to your website, why they visit it, and then optimizing their journey through the site. But too often biases and technology get in the way of making sure the user is kept top of mind and that the path through your website results in a successful visit. Join us for a deep dive to see the role User Personas play in your website strategy, learn how to create Personas that drive success, and how to integrate them into your web planning and workflow. With Personas in hand, we’ll put them to work with User Journey mapping to make sure that your visitors can find what they want in your site and solve both the objectives of the visitor and your organization. More info/register.

Organizer: ASAE Marketing Professionals Advisory Council

Presenter: Ray van Hilst, Director of Client Results, Yoko Consulting

Wed 4/1 at 2:00 p.m. – Imagining, Creating, and Executing the Technology Strategy

Regardless of the size of your organization, you have a limited technology budget. How do you see beyond those constraints to what the organization truly needs from technology? How do you make a compelling argument for more investment and then deliver on that investment? What are the criteria for evaluating technologies that will not just upgrade your services, but modernize your organization? Hear about making a successful argument for new tech, how IT creates value for the business, and a framework for determining where and how to invest. More info/register.

Host: Association Women Technology Champions (AWTC)

Presenter: Rebecca Bowen, Director of Information Technology at the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation

Thu 4/2 at 2 p.m. – Embracing Wellness from a Distance

Join a discussion on “embracing” wellness while having to practice social distancing from others. The human interaction that we need and crave is no less a need and we need to figure out a new normal for achieving it during these uncertain times. How can we embrace wellness while physical isolation is impacting ourselves, our staff, our members, our clients, and our families? More info/register.

Host: KiKi L’Italien, senior consultant, Tecker International, and founder, Amplified Growth

Guest: Aaron Wolowiec, CEO and learning strategist, Event Garde, and founder, Healthy By Association

Association Brain Food Weekly is published Friday mornings. If your organization offers free professional development for the association community, please send me the link via email or Twitter before Thursday noon.

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Author: deirdrereid

Deirdre is a freelance writer for companies serving the association market, who after more than 20 years in the association and restaurant industries, is enjoying the good life as a ghostblogger and content marketing writer. Away from her laptop, you can find her walking in the woods, doing yoga, going to shows, journaling, cooking, or relaxing in a comfy chair with a good book and a glass of something tasty in hand.

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