Association Brain Food Weekly: 3.12.21

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

New moon – inspiration for a weekly list of free educational events and resources for the association management community

Association technology and analytics. I just read a new paper—The New Association Tech Ecosystem: Powering Member Experiences with Integration and Specialization—from Chris Gloede and Karen Power of Ricochet Advice and I suggest you do too, especially if you have technology or analytics decisions on the horizon. Pay special attention to the four philosophies on the AMS’ role in the association tech stack, and the pros and cons of each.

The authors finish by saying, “Association tech ecosystems limit or enable organizations’ capacity to serve their members and customers online… Real strategic leaders will pull their technical foundation from the shadows and shine a light on the important stack decisions ahead. This investment can produce great returns to retention and revenue.”

Innovation method. WBT Systems introduces a new brainstorming and innovation tool: jootsing. It means “jumping out of the system.” Their post outlines the three steps of jootsing and the barriers you might encounter along the way.

New member onboarding. Fionta describes several ways to learn more about new members during onboarding so you can lead them to the resources and services they need most.

Association role model. Barry Barresi of Association Ventures has published more than a dozen interviews with association executives, including one with Shawn Boynes, FASAE, CAE, executive director at the American Association for Anatomy. They discuss empowering diverse voices, representation, association name change, and operational agility.

Stress. I frequently hear association professionals talk about their overwhelming workloads. It seems worse now than ever. Lisa Boylan at Associations Now writes about the services, resources, and safe spaces provided by the Massachusetts Society of CPAs to help its members manage stress. I’d love to see ASAE explore this issue and provide support if there’s a need. You shouldn’t have to accept unrelenting stress as business as usual—that’s so unhealthy and wrong.

Stress and anxiety remedy. If you’re dealing with a stressful situation, try psychologist Tara Brach’s RAIN method, as explained by Bryan Robinson. It can help you escape the spiraling cycle of anxious thoughts that can overtake your brain. Simply recognizing the power of your thoughts over emotions and reactions is the biggest gift of this method.

Quick hits

  • 14 fun and creative webinar and event formats—you might find a new idea here. (Daniel Waas)
  • What may be missing in your community governance—prepare for the unexpected. (Marjorie Anderson, Community by Association)
  • People who adopt a self-compassion mindset are more likely to achieve their goals—and enjoy the journey along the way. (Jeff Haden, Inc.)

Good eats

Skip down to the list of free webinars if you prefer takeout. If you’re a home cook, check out the weekly In The Kitchen posts on my Grabbing the Gusto blog.

  • In North Carolina, it’s shad roe season for the next two weeks. Last year, I waited too long and missed out, so I bought a set last week and we enjoyed them for Sunday brunch—shad roe with bacon, onion, and grits.
  • For Sunday dinner, I made another comfort food dish, coq au vin in the slow cooker. If you make this recipe—which is excellent, I’ve made it twice—don’t add the garlic with the mushrooms, add it a minute before taking the mushrooms out.
  • On the side, a sauté of kale and red cabbage with bacon, onion, garlic, and dried cranberries, and sourdough rolls for dipping purposes—and now for a quick snack (with butter, of course) before I go out on my morning walk.
  • The next night, black sea bass with a toping of basil pesto, parmesan cheese, and panko bread crumbs. On the side, kale sautéed with bacon, onion, jalapeno, garlic, and dried cranberries, along with roasted sweet potatoes. My cheater method for roasted sweet potatoes is to pierce them all over and nuke them for five to six minutes, then finish them in the toaster oven—saves a lot of time.

Here are the educational events scheduled for next week. If you have a free webinar or event coming up, please send me the link before Wednesday evening the week before it’s scheduled. I’ll be happy to feature it as long as it’s not too product centric.

Fri 3/12 at 10 a.m.* EST – Member ROI Simplified: Safeguarding Your Organization’s Future

The most important method for safeguarding your organization’s future is to research, embrace, and maximize your Member ROI. Learn how to measure your current ROI in actual dollar numbers, use the numbers for influencing the membership decision, grow your ROI, and prove beyond a doubt that membership in your organization is a good business decision. More info/register.

Host: Ed Rigsbee, CAE, president at Rigsbee Research

*All times are Eastern Daylight Time unless otherwise noted.

Fri 3/12 at 11:30 a.m. EST – Thought Leaders:  Escape Worn-Out Webinar Formats in 3 Simple Moves

Learn three simple moves that you can make, straight away, to escape the worn-out webinar and instead, attract and hold people’s attention so that they take action on what they learn from you. More info/register.

Host: Rees McCann

Fri 3/12 at 12 p.m. EST – Everything You Need to Know About Live-Streaming

Learn how to produce a high quality live-stream on a budget, how to scale it up for larger organizations and what to know going into planning a virtual event so you are more knowledgeable if/when selecting a video production partner. More info/register.

Host/presenter: video producer Jeff Achen, CallSign51

Fri 3/12 at 12 p.m. EST – WEC Grapevine: How We Did It – Digital Event Strategy & Considerations

Discover the strategy behind MPI’s design of the WEC Grapevine Digital Experience. Learn why and how critical decisions were made, and their impact on the digital participant. Consider the challenges and opportunities of going live, and how you can make the best technology decisions for your participants. 1 CMP credit. More info/register (fee for MPI non-members).

Host: MPI

Presenter: Jessie States, CMP, CMM, MPI Academy Director, MPI

Fri 3/12 at 12 p.m. EST – EventTech Chat

A weekly conversation about meeting and event technology, including software, hardware, and audiovisual for in-person and online events. More info/register.

Host: Brandt Krueger, founder Event Technology Consulting

Fri 3/12 at 3 p.m. EST – CAE Information Rap Session

Join state society executives, CAE study group leaders and long-time CAE instructor Susan Radwan, CAE, ARM to learn more about exam preparation, effective study strategies and what to expect day of the exam. More info/register.

Host: Wisconsin Society of Association Executives

Fri 3/12 at 3:45 p.m. EST – Ten Career Mistakes to Avoid (Part 2)

Learn about the top ten career mistakes to avoid. This fun, interactive session will help you dodge future career mistakes and be more proactive in managing your career. More info/register. (must join Fridays@4 first, it’s free).

Host: Fridays@4

Presenter: Caroline Francis, Ed.S, CPRC, CCC, BCCC, CCSP, Director of UK Alumni Career Services

Mon 3/15 at 11 a.m. – The ROI Member Recruitment Brochure: How to Crea8e Brochures That Positively Influence Membership Decisions

Learn to determine who should be membership targets, which features of membership should be highlighted, how to develop an effective brochure layout, decision motives for joining, and how to train your members to use the brochure. More info/register.

Host: Ed Rigsbee, CAE, president at Rigsbee Research

Mon 3/15 at 1 p.m. – Chatting with Agnes & Cecilia

This series of 15- to 20-minute videos cover hot topics and issues related to 501c organization management. New episodes are posted by 1 p.m. every Monday. Check out Cecilia’s Nonprofit Executive Spotlight series too.


  • Cecilia Sepp, CAE, CNAP, principal and founder, Rogue Tulips LLC
  • Agnes Amos-Coleman, MBA, CMP, education, conference, event, certification consultant, Amos-Coleman

Tue 3/16 at 11 a.m. – Meta-Trends: Using Data to Nail the New Normal for Your Association and Your Members

Learn about tactical strategies to improve your association, members, and constituents’ net worth, protecting the health of your association in the next economy, and the prospects for the industry you serve and your members in the next 15 years. 1.5 CAE credits. More info/register.

Host: U.S. Transactions Corp.

Presenter: Mark Parrott, Author, Meta-Trends & the Next Economy

Tue 3/16 from 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. – Design-a-thon: Co-creating the Future of Events

A different kind of event, you’ll find inspiring keynotes coupled with small group workshops led by industry veterans. Come with your biggest challenges and we’ll work together to come up with solutions. More info/register.

Host: Hubb

Tue 3/16 at 12 p.m. – Crunch and Munch Monthly Chat

We’ll feature different questions from our community and assist each other with best practice sharing and idea generation. More info/register.

Host: ASAE Component Relations and Volunteer Management Section Council

Tue 3/16 at 12:30 p.m. – Meetings of Membership Minds

These impromptu, casual discussions about membership concepts, issues, and challenges are conducted live online and open to membership professionals to comment and offer insights. More info/register.

Host: Dan Ratner, The Business of Membership, and Scott Oser, Scott Oser Associates

Tue 3/16 at 1 p.m.  – Pandemic Compliance & Safety at Live Events (Part 2)

Our mission is to bring humans together to ignite change, and even though last year we fulfilled that mission virtually, this year we need to start rethinking what that will look like as organizations return to a new normal and begin hosting hybrid and live events. Let’s bring events back together safely. Learn from public health experts, hear best compliance practices, and network and collaborate with fellow event pros. More info/register.

Host: Event Farm


  • Christopher Deubert, General Counsel, DC United
  • Stephanie Krzywanski, CMM, CED, Partner & COO, JR Global Events
  • Ryan Costello, Co-Founder, Event Farm

Tue 3/16 at 2 p.m. – The Three C’s of Digital Marketing Success: How to Simply Create, Co-Create and Curate Content to Engage Your Audience and Drive Real Results

The world of digital marketing is becoming increasingly sophisticated but achieving success doesn’t have to be daunting. Dive deeper into the foundational elements of digital marketing success. Learn how to create, co-create, and curate content that delivers real value to your audience. Hear about digital marketing best practices you can get started with today. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: Gather Voices


  • Erica Salm Rench, Director of Customer Success,
  • Michael Hoffman, CEO, Gather Voices

Tue 3/16 at 2 p.m. – Keys to Driving Webinar & Digital Event Registration

Learn best practices that have helped companies build their webinar and digital event audiences from tens to thousands, including how to optimize your email invitations, picking subject lines and titles, best days to promote your events, and strategies for A/B testing your promotions. More info/register.

Host: American Marketing Association

Presenter: Mark Bornstein, VP of Marketing, ON24

Tue 3/16 at 3 p.m. – Let’s Get Hybrid! How to Create Successful Events in a Post-Pandemic World

We’re all gearing up for hybrid events. Hear how to define hybrid events, ways to create exceptional experiences for all your audiences, and what’s needed to define and implement a successful hybrid strategy. 1 CMP credit. More info/register.

Host: PCMA


  • Lisa Block, EVP, Conference Strategy and Design, Velvet Chainsaw Consulting
  • Tyra Dyson, CMP, DES, Manager of Event Logistics, Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology
  • Deborah Stokes, CMP, CEM, President & Managing Partner, Conference Managers
  • Meghan Gowen, Client Development, CommPartners
  • Joe Felperin, Director of Business Development, CadmiumCD

Wed 3/17 at 11 a.m. – 5 Steps to Digital Optimization: Work from Anywhere in 2021 & Beyond

Learn what ‘unified communications and collaboration’ means. Discover the benefits, advantages, and components of unified communications as a service, and how to choose the right collaboration tools to help integrate your voice and data. 1.5 CAE credits. More info/register.

Host: U.S. Transactions Corp.


  • Adam Kuhn, Director, Information Technology, Futures Industry Association
  • Ali Niroo, Founding Partner, Converged Network Services Group
  • Dave Hopper, Director Of Engineering, Converged Network Services Group

Wed 3/17 at 11 a.m. – The ROI of Words: How to Write Website Copy That Will Drive Member Renewal and Recruitment

You can no longer depend on interns or web designers to write your member value copy for influencing renewals and retention. They do pretty, you must do effective. Learn how to write the kind of benefit (or what’s in it for me) copy that will influence the decision to join or renew. More info/register.

Host: Ed Rigsbee, CAE, president at Rigsbee Research

Wed 3/17 from 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. – Design-a-thon: Co-creating the Future of Events

A different kind of event, you’ll find inspiring keynotes coupled with small group workshops led by industry veterans. Come with your biggest challenges and we’ll work together to come up with solutions. More info/register.

Host: Hubb

Wed 3/17 at 12 p.m. – Nonprofit Mergers and Acquisitions: Is Now the Time for Your Organization?

In addition to the legal and tax issues that accompany a merger or acquisition, the integration of multiple organizations’ governance, programs, membership, and staff also involves internal politics, combined strategies, and the alignment of different organizational cultures. Examine the issues that accompany the merger and acquisition process from both a legal and nonlegal perspective. Explore real-life, practical examples of organizations combining, elements of success and failure, and the benefits to consider when deciding whether to combine with another organization. More info/register.

Host: Venable LLP


  • George Constantine, Partner, Nonprofit, Venable LLP
  • Cindy Lewin, Partner, Nonprofit, Venable LLP
  • Marc Cadin, CEO, Finseca

Wed 3/17 at 1 p.m. – #ExpoChat on Twitter

ExpoChat is a Twitter-based conversation on topics related to the trade show industry. More info.

Wed 3/17 at 3 p.m. – Slack, Microsoft Teams, Zoom. What Works Best for Nonprofits?

Hear about best practices and innovations in using remote collaboration tools as well as technical support ideas for integrating and implementing file and data sharing across these platforms. More info/register.

Host: Community IT


  • Maya Grigorovich-Barsky, Senior Director of Executive Operations & Events, America’s Promise Alliance
  • Liz Glaser, Director, Strategic Initiatives and Partnerships, America’s Promise Alliance
  • Johanny Torrico, Chief Operating Officer, Community IT
  • Johan Hammerstrom (moderator), CEO, Community IT

Thu 3/18 at 11 a.m. – Learning and Leading beyond Crisis: How to Keep Going and Growing

In this panel discussion featuring four innovative association leaders, we’ll examine everything that 2020 brought with it: The good, the bad and the ugly. We’ll talk about the lessons learned, the mistakes made and the ways we’ll all be able to grow from here. More info/register.

Host: Sidecar


  • Donté P. Shannon, FASAE, CAE, CEO of the Association for Equipment Management Professionals
  • Lakisha Ann Woods, CAE, President & CEO of the National Institute of Building Sciences
  • Sheri Sesay-Tuffour, PhD, CAE, CEO, Pediatric Nursing Certification Board
  • Stefanie Reeves, FASAE, CAE, Executive Director of the Maryland Psychological Association

Thu 3/18 at 11 a.m. – Ask, Capture and Act to Engage New and Renewing Members

Contextual engagement is the process of asking questions, capturing context, and acting with automated workflows and alerts. It helps organizations engage members with more relevance and personalization throughout the member journey. Combining contextual engagement with your existing marketing efforts will allow you to more effectively meet member needs and drive higher return on your marketing investment. Learn how associations are using contextual engagement to improve member engagement and drive revenue. 1.5 CAE credits. More info/register.

Host: U.S. Transactions Corp.


  • Amy Hemphill, Senior Director, Member Relations at ASAE: The Center for Association Leadership
  • Dave Will, Co-Founder and CEO, PropFuel

The 3/18 at 11:30 a.m. – How to Make an Impact with a Virtual Volunteer Program

Learn how to make an impact with virtual volunteers all year-long: how to make the ask and recruit more volunteers, recruitment strategy “must haves” for a successful volunteer program, virtual volunteer opportunities that members can do from anywhere, and how to show gratitude and thank your volunteers. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: YourMembership by Community Brands


  • Michelle Schweitz, Marketing Manager
  • Tirrah Switzer, Product Marketing Manager

Thu 3/18 at 12 p.m. – Town Hall Discussion: Converting Instructor-led Training to On-demand E-learning

Explore some of the unexpected challenges in converting instructor-led training to on-demand e-learning—along with how to overcome them. You’ll take away a five-step model and valuable checklists to assist with successfully analyzing, managing, and leading an e-learning conversion project. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: ASAE Professional Development Professionals Community

Presenter: Diane Elkins, co-owner of Artisan E-Learning

Thu 3/18 at 12 p.m. – What Gets Measured, Gets Done: Measuring the Effectiveness of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Learn about the purposes of diversity and inclusion metrics, various data collection techniques, how to assess your organization’s progress toward DEI goals, and how to assess your organization’s return on investment. More info/register.

Host: The Diversity Movement


  • Florence Holland, Ed.D., Head of Consulting at The Diversity Movement
  • Oriana Leach, Ph.D., DEI Consultant & Data Specialist at The Diversity Movement

Thu 3/18 at 1 p.m. – Facilit8me: Lunch and Learn – Facilitation Soft Skills

Join a discussion focused on facilitating with difficult personalities. Whether it’s the passive-aggressive participant, the racist, the sexist participant, the loudest voice or the squeaky wheel, it’s clear that the people who attend our meetings and events can have a profound impact on both the process and the product of a facilitation. This thought-provoking focused conversation will leave you with new insights and takeaways you can immediately apply to your facilitation work. More info/register.

Host: Event Garde

Thu 3/18 at 2 p.m. – Member Content: Efficient and Effective Tactics

To effectively capture your members’ attention, you have to promote your content effectively and efficiently. Learn SEO basics for more effective content promotion. Discover how to personalize and automatically send email blasts with your recently published content. Understand the best ways to leverage your social media profiles and other free promotional channels. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: ASAE

Presenter: Erica Salm Rench, ‎Director of Client and Market Success, ‎

Thu 3/18 at 2 p.m. – Event Contract Essentials in the COVID Era

Learn how event hosts can manage risk and liability by ensuring that facilities comply with the latest government and industry health and safety guidelines and practices; hold harmless, indemnification and insurance requirements; force majeure clauses and what they should say; the wisdom of waivers of liability; and how to handle deposits. More info/register.

Host: Smart Meetings

Presenter: John S. Foster, Esq., CHME, attorney, speaker, author and legal counsel, Foster, Jensen & Gulley

Thu 3/18 at 2 p.m. – How to Plan for Safer in-Person Event Experiences

In this series, we provide the knowledge and tools you need to make sure that no matter what is thrown at you this year, you’ll be future ready. We’ll help you craft a total event program strategy that includes virtual and hybrid events and that gives you the flexibility you to need to handle the return of in-person gatherings. More info/register.

Host: Cvent

Thu 3/18 at 3 p.m. – COVID Testing at Events 101: How to Make a Plan to Keep Guests Safer Before, During, and After

On-site COVID testing is a key component to any plan to return to in-person events—to help guests feel safe and to mitigate the host organization’s risk. Learn what factors to consider when devising a testing program, the logistics of setting up on-site, what to do if someone tests positive, case studies from actual events, and more. More info/register.

Host: Event Leadership Institute


  • Kelly Teneyuque Chaco, CMP, Director of Events, Eurofins
  • Travis Wilkes, M.D., Medical Director, Eurofins SAFER@WORKTM and EmpowerDX
  • Erica White, Event Solutions Director, ITA Group, Inc.
  • Beth Kormanik (moderator), Event Leadership Institute

Thu 3/18 at 4 p.m. – Successful Board Management

Learn how to keep your board engaged in a virtual environment, adapt your board culture to current times, manage successful transitions, and what effect the pandemic has had on your organization’s mission. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: ASAE Reston-Loudoun Idea Swap

Presenter: Cindy Reed Paska, Executive Director, Council of Scientific Society Presidents

Fri 3/19 at 12 p.m. – The Science of Meetings & Events Series: Experience Design for Emotional Wellbeing

Attendees’ minds are often filled with clutter, uncertainty and insecurity, which can lead to stress and block the greatness our events are designed to induce and capitalize on. Learn how the psychology of emotional wellness and success can inform the experiences you design for your communities, staff, leaders and industries. Discover how using the principles and science of emotional wellness can change your participants’ perspectives and ultimately drive better return on investment and return on experience for all of your stakeholders. 1 CMP credit. More info/register (fee for MPI non-members).

Host: MPI

Presenter: Dr. Lawana Gladney, CEO, Gladney Enterprises, LLC

Fri 3/19 at 12 p.m. – EventTech Chat

A weekly conversation about meeting and event technology, including software, hardware, and audiovisual for in-person and online events. More info/register.

Host: Brandt Krueger, founder Event Technology Consulting

Fri 3/19 at 3:45 p.m. – Open Networking – Featured Topic: Career Mentors and Influencers

More info/register (must join Fridays@4 first, it’s free).

Host: Fridays@4

Facilitator: Mike Ulmer

Tue 3/23 at 2 p.m. – Mergers and Alliances in COVID Times

There has never been a better time to assess what the future holds for your association. An alliance with one or more other associations can strengthen your association’s voice on Capitol Hill or provide additional resources for your members. Learn about the distinctions between mergers and alliances and if your association should consider a merger or alliance, how to prepare your board to discuss your association’s future, and key drivers and issues that can arise in merger or alliance negotiations. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: ASAE


  • Eileen Morgan Johnson, CAE, partner, Whiteford, Taylor & Preston, LLP
  • David Kushner, CAE, president, The Kushner Companies

Wed 3/24 at 12 p.m. – Chapter Events: Making the In-Person/Hybrid/Virtual Decision

For the past year, CRPs and chapter leaders have focused on virtual. As the vaccine rolls out across the country, the focus is shifting to when chapters can resume in-person meetings (and indeed some already have). But should chapters plan on in-person meetings this year? Can they provide a safe experience? Will members be ready? What about hybrid—the word on everyone’s mind? Is that a viable possibility? Hear expert advice on how to help chapters make the right event decisions. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Hosts: Billhighway and Mariner Management

Wed 3/24 at 2 p.m. – Strategy, Governance, and Operations Excellence in the World of Remote Work

COVID accelerated the already growing practice of allowing employees to operate virtually. An added layer for associations to consider is ensuring your governance has a future-focused mission impact in the wake of these new virtual initiatives. Learn ten tips that will help your leaders and boards plan strategically for the future as well as best practices and approaches to transition from in-person to virtual management and governance smoother and more efficiently. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: Achurch Consulting

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

Thu 3/25 at 11 a.m. – 6 Things That Will Kill Your LMS And 3 Companies That Did It Right

Many organizations fall into unforeseen traps as they procure, implement and roll-out an LMS. And all too often, those roadblocks derail implementation and delay success. Find out how to avoid these fatal missteps by learning the six most lethal LMS implementation threats, typical warning signs, why adaptability matters, how to spot an adaptable LMS, and what three companies did to get it right. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: Talented Learning


  • John Leh, CEO and Lead Analyst, Talented Learning
  • Lars Hyland, Chief Learning Officer, Totara Learning

Thu 3/25 at 2 p.m. – $ecrets & $trategies on How EO Nashville Created an Accelerator Program

The Entrepreneur’s Organization Nashville Chapter created an accelerator program that is undeniably one of the biggest revenue generators and member engagement opportunities for the organization. Learn how they built it, how they have kept it growing for more than ten years, and what secrets and strategies you can transfer to a new profit center for your association. More info/register.

Host: 100 Reviews

Presenter: Sameera Lowe, Executive Director of EO Nashville

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 Wednesday evening.

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Creative Commons photo of the new moon (happening Saturday) by Klemen Vrankar via Unsplash

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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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