Association Brain Food Weekly: 4.9.21

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

country road – inspiration for a weekly list of free educational events and resources for the association community

Ideation session. Who doesn’t love sitting around and talking about a situation, coming up with ideas, and riffing off each other’s contributions—then marveling at how smart and creative we are? I got a chance to indulge in this type of group dynamic a few weeks ago during an ideation session hosted by Teri Carden of Non-Dues-A-Palooza and designed by Matchbox Virtual Media. WBT Systems, who sponsored the session, is betting your members would love it too, so they described how to host your own ideation session.

Heavy workload. Every association professional has one thing in common: more work than time to do it. During the pandemic, MemberSuite noticed your already full plate was taking on additional tasks and projects so they’re sharing strategies to help you cope with an extremely heavy workload.

Website insight. Ray Van Hilst at Yoko Consulting shares some interesting observations about website trends over the past year—patterns you might not expect but make sense upon reflection. In #3, he talks about the positive impact you can make on search traffic if you do a few simple things with on-page SEO. #4 is one of those “what? oh yeah, that makes sense” trends about desktop vs. mobile traffic and the popularity of long-form content (yay!).

Event safety. Event Farm is hosting a series of virtual events on pandemic compliance and safety at in-person events. The first session addressed six event safety factors to consider from the public health and event planning perspectives. I bet you’ll find something here you hadn’t thought of yet.

Content barriers. I don’t work with companies who take the committee approach to content—it’s a huge red flag for frustrations down the road. But you might have that issue at your organization—perhaps an actual committee vetting articles or leaders with control issues. If that’s the problem, Krystle Kopacz at Revmade shares advice for getting content published more quickly when you’re slowed down by an internal system or bureaucracy.

Quick hits

  • 5 tips to attract and engage the next generation of leaders—excellent advice from members of ASAE’s Healthcare Community Advisory Committee. (ASAE)
  • How to communicate price increases: a timely post if you’re planning to charge a more appropriate amount for your virtual events this year. ( Michael Tatonetti, CAE)
  • A virtual presentation checklist for you and/or your speakers. (Tamsen Webster)

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.

  • I don’t have much to share this week because we went to the beach for a few days, so I indulged in seafood elsewhere. Before we left, I made one of my favorites, a one-pan meal inspired by Portuguese cookery. The main ingredients are almaco jack (hefty fish fillets you don’t see often unless you have a seafood share like me), kale, chouriço, white beans, and tomatoes. I’ll share the recipe this weekend on Gusto.
  • The only other meal I made was Mummy Lorraine striped mullet—a regular in my fish repertoire because it doesn’t take much effort. Top fish fillets with a mix of crushed Ritz crackers, lemon zest, garlic salt, and melted butter, then bake.

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 4/9 at 10 a.m.* – Overcoming Leadership Challenges in the Boardroom (NYSAE Engagement Lounge)

Does your Board spend disproportionate amount of time engaged in daily operations? Is your lawyer taking direction from your chairman or members of the executive committee? Are there tenured board members who steer work towards legacy matters? These are just some of the topics we’ll tackle in this Engagement Lounge. Be ready to share your experiences as well as your winning solutions on how you solved conflict within your board of directors. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: New York Society of Association Executives

Presenter: Phil Kafarakis, Senior Advisor to Boards, Chief Executives & Governments

*All times are Eastern Daylight Time unless otherwise noted.

Fri 4/9 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 4/9 at 2 p.m. – It’s Time to Do Something with Your Data: The Value of a Data-Driven Culture and How to Make It Happen in Your Organization

Everyone is talking about the importance of using data, but fewer people are confident about how to create a data-driven culture. Hear stories from associations that have been transformed by an evidence-based approach to their work, how to identify valuable data, ideas for engaging staff and the board, examples of game-changing investments that helped organizations get past barriers, and how to foster a strategic data culture that supports long-term planning and mitigates fear around hard decisions. More info/register.

Host: ASAE


  • Susan Chung, Ph.D., Vice President, Research and Knowledge, American Society of Interior Designers
  • Bob London, CAE, Executive Director, Alpha Phi Omega
  • Katherine Matthews, CAE, Manager, Data & Analytics, National Council of Architectural Registration Boards
  • Tom Southard, CAE, COO, Conference of Major Superiors of Men
  • Mike Steckel, Director of UX, Mighty Citizen

Fri 4/9 at 3:45 p.m. – Business and Professional Etiquette

Many people assume ‘etiquette’ is about knowing which fork and napkin to use at a formal dinner and how quickly you should send a thank you note after an interview. However, the way you behave says a lot about your professionalism. By being conscious of business etiquette, you can help set yourself apart professionally. More info/register (must first join Fridays@4, it’s free).

Host: Fridays@4

Presenter: Shelly Trent, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, CAE, JCTC, JCDC

Mon 4/12 at 1 p.m. – Meditation for Professionals  (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.

Guest: Fern Carbonell


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

Tue 4/13 at 1 p.m. – Increasing Connectivity & Networking in Virtual Spaces Using Avatars

A challenge of virtual meetings is replicating the hallway moments and small-group interactions that often naturally spring from in-person events. Learn how to better connect meeting and conference attendees in virtual spaces using avatar-based platforms. More info/register.

Host: Better Meetings

Facilitator: Lee Gimpel, founder, Better Meetings

Tue 4/13 at 3 p.m. – Sponsorship Offerings in a Hybrid World

How will you adjust to a hybrid event – whatever that may look like – and what will you offer your sponsors? Join us if you are seeking solutions to increase your sponsorship income. More info/register.


  • Scott Oser of Oser & Associates
  • Lewis Flax of Flax Associates

Tue 4/13 at 4 p.m. – Improve Your Member Experience with Smart Data Management

Looking for solutions to your data woes? Looking to take your database to the next level, create greater connectively between your data, create insightful reports and improve the user experience for your members? Learn how you can optimize your data management for even greater success and member satisfaction. More info/register.

Host: Grype

Presenter: Wes Trochlil, founder, Effective Database Management

Wed 4/14 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. – Spring VirCon: Data Is Your DeLorean

You know that data is—and will continue to be—the central source of power when it comes to organizational growth. The question then becomes—is your data actionable? Learn how to step out of data housing and into data activation. Simply put—data without purpose will get you nowhere. Pave your data-driven road in 2021, and beyond. If you’re not one step ahead, you’ll be back in time. 2.5 CAE credits. More info/register.

Host: HighRoad Solution

Wed 4/14 at 11 a.m. – The State of Regulations

Hear a discussion on the current regulatory environment and what to expect from OIRA, with specific examples of the regulatory environment and how it is and isn’t shifting from the Trump Administration. More info/register.

Host: Fiscalnote


  • Keith White, Director of Legal and Regulatory Affairs, CQ Legal
  • Anne MacMillan, Principal, Invariant GR
  • Graham Owens, Director of Regulatory, Tax, and Domestic Economic Policy, National Association of Manufacturers

Wed 4/14 at 12 p.m. – A Roadmap for Shifting from Scarcity to Abundance

Learn how to start moving from never having enough to seeing the abundance that is out there waiting for you. Because once you embrace abundant social change, you will move from being constantly exhausted and hitting your head against the wall to witnessing a sea change — a growing number of people engaging in, investing in, advocating for, and helping create the change you seek. More info/register.

Host: Social Velocity

Wed 4/14 at 1 p.m. – Hybrid How-To: A Step-by-Step Guide to Hosting a Successful Hybrid Event

Hybrid events combine the best of both in-person and virtual experiences, allowing for maximum flexibility, accommodation and accessibility amongst your attendees. We’ll break down the basic elements of a hybrid event and give you practical tips that will help you design a successful hybrid event. More info/register.

Host: Meetings Today

Presenter: Alyssa Peltier, Cvent

Wed 4/14 at 1 p.m. – #ExpoChat on Twitter

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

Wed 4/14 at 2 p.m. – Where Community Fits in Your Overall Digital Engagement Strategy

Explore the ideas of identifying perspective and setting goals for your digital strategy. From renewals to non-dues revenue, and from prospecting to engagement and expectations, where does community fit in your tech stack and where do we draw the line of exclusivity? More info/register.


  • Benjamin Muscolino, CEO of Breezio
  • Teri Carden, CEO and founder, ReviewMyAMS

Wed 4/14 at 2 p.m. – Hotel Contract Solutions for In-Person Events in the New Normal

Hotel contract language may need updates to address the issues of meetings and events as in-person meetings resume later this year and into 2022. The same old language might not do the trick. Join a discussion of negotiation strategies and new language for contract cancellation agreements; changing liability concerns around vaccine policies, onsite precautions, and waivers; and more hot-button issues. 1 CMP credit. More info/register.

Host: MeetingsNet

Presenter: Barbara Dunn, partner at Barnes & Thornburg

Wed 4/14 at 2 p.m. – Be a Change Champion: A Deep Dive into the 7 Change Actions

Learn about the 7 Core human needs that emerged in the wake of the 2020 global pandemic and how the 7 Change Actions learning experience, based on these core human needs, was researched and developed. Find out how the course will help participants to become more resilient and innovative, arming them with skills to develop value-based solutions, and enabling them to be future-proof #ChangeChampions. 1 CMP credit. More info/register.

Host: PCMA

Presenter: Amy Blackman, CEO of Fruition Co.

Wed 4/14 at 2 p.m. – Event Science: The Adventure Continues

Join the quest to follow legendary meeting professional James Caspian as he travels the world inventing the future of events based on science. Described as the first adventure TV show for planners, it is a fun journey that uncovers emerging strategies for producing powerful events. More info/register.

Host: Smart Meetings


  • Heather Mason, CEO of Caspian Agency
  • Carl Winston, Director of the Payne School of Hospitality at San Diego State

Wed 4/14 at 3 p.m. – Discuss a Solution for your Situation (Virtual Situation Room)

Need to solve a cloud issue? Have a contract question? Struggling with your data strategy? Seeking help solving issues in your remote work environment? Have cyber security questions or need feedback on an idea you want to iterate? Head to the Virtual Situation Room. You’ll have the opportunity to share issues and get advice from your peers. No talking heads, no preaching—just great, actionable advice. More info/register.

Host: ASAE Technology Council

Wed 4/14 at 4 p.m. – Let’s Talk Research Chats! It’s Time to do Something with Your Data

Join this virtual informal gathering to discuss topics related to harnessing and applying data to advance your work. These gatherings are a perfect opportunity to connect with other association professionals, pose lingering questions, and continue the conversation from the previous Friday’s virtual panel discussion. More info/register.

Host: ASAE


  • Amanda E. Hortsman, CAE, Staff Attorney, Society of Critical Care Medicine
  • John Losh III, Associate Membership Director, National Association of Counties

Thu 4/15 at 11 a.m. – New Business Models for a Hybrid World

The global virtual events market is projected to grow at a ‘compound annual growth rate of 23.2% from 2020 to 2027’. With the positive virtual event experience of many and the uncertain timeline for a return to physical events, the hybrid model for events is on everyone’s lips. The panel will share their ideas and experiences around different types of hybrid event models, from community and subscription to increased global reach, wider networking, micro-events, and premiumization of the in-person experience. More info/register.

Host: Virtual Events Institute


  • Carina Bauer, CEO, IMEX Group
  • Luke Bilton, Chief Growth Officer, ExpoPlatform
  • Martyn Clarkson, VP of Strategy, George P. Johnson Experience Marketing
  • Dahlia El Gazzar, Tech Evangelist, Dahlia+ Agency
  • Jessie States, Director, MPI Academy, Meeting Professionals International
  • Greg Topalian. CEO, Clarion UX and Leftfield Media

Thu 4/15 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 net worth (and for your members and constituents) and the motivation to do so today, how to protect 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

Thu 4/15 at 1 p.m. – Must-Have Strategies for Membership Growth

The crises of the past year challenged associations, but some are turning those challenges into opportunities. From renewed focus to the launch of ‘must-have’ member benefits and team-building strategies, learn how five associations are managing change and keeping their members engaged. More info/register.

Host: Sarah Sladek & Company


  • Rhette Baugman, Chief Revenue Officer, National Speakers Association
  • Deborah Snyder, National Vice President of Membership, National Association of Women Business Owners
  • Mike Moss, President, Society of College and University Planning
  • Katie McBreen, Vice President of Communications and Strategy, Consumer Brands Association
  • Kevin Mayeux, CEO, National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors

Thu 4/15 at 1 p.m. – Facilit8me: Community of Practice

Join us for our open community of practice dialogue in a new, 30-minute express format. We ask participants to bring with them any facilitation challenges (past, present or future) they’d like to discuss as a group for supportive feedback, debrief and evaluation. No challenge is too big or small. We leverage the collective wisdom and experience of the group to brainstorm possible solutions, advice and recommendations in a safe and growth-minded environment. More info/register.

Host: Event Garde

Thu 4/15 at 2 p.m. – The Secrets to a Successful Mentoring Program

Find out how the American Society of Civil Engineers is rethinking the mentoring experience, using community resources, and automating their program. Learn how mentoring can improve member value, ways to increase student/younger member retention, and tips for establishing touchpoints, expectations, and resources. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: Higher Logic

Presenter: Tirza Austin, Online Community Manager at the American Society of Civil Engineers

Thu 4/15 at 2 p.m. – Event Talk Live: Creating Engaging Virtual Conferences

The Event Talk Live virtual event series brings together the brightest minds in live events for a stimulating and engaging conversation about how the event landscape will adapt in the coming months and years. Hear from Vasil Azarov about how his team successfully held the Growth Innovate Conference. Learn what event experts Kathryn Frankson and Jana Boruta do to ensure their virtual conferences are a success. Connect and network with other event pros through 1:1 matchmaking. More info/register.

Host: Accelevents


  • Vasil Azarov of Growth Blazers
  • Kathryn Frankson from Informa
  • Jana Boruta, author of Digital-First Events

Thu 4/15 at 3 p.m. – Unleash the Untapped Potential of Your Virtual Community

The past year has shown us the value of virtual communities for maintaining connections and providing valuable networking for members. But are you using the data from your online community to develop new products, drive event education sessions and identify influencers to lead content discussions? Learn why every part of your association should care about an online community, ways to tie success in the community to the KPIs your execs and board expect, and how to better understand your members using community data alongside other tech data. More info/register.

Host: Association Analytics


  • Jenny Morse, Engagement Strategist, Higher Logic
  • Greg Pollack, Vice President of Sales, Association Analytics

Fri 4/16 at 12 p.m. – Strategic Negotiating in the Post-Shutdown World

This workshop will arm you with tactical strategies that will help you negotiate and defend your organization in the post-shutdown world. In this high-level workshop, attendees will review key contract clauses, negotiation tips, and strategies on how to ensure a strong contract to protect your organization. 1 CMP credit. More info/register (fee for MPI non-members).

Host: MPI

Presenter: Robyn Mietkiewicz, CMP, CMM, Strategic Partner, INNOV8 Meetings + Events

Fri 4/16 at 1 p.m. – How Your Association Can Drive Revenue & Growth with AI-Based Personalization

Today’s associations are employing AI to do the heavy lifting of tagging and categorizing their content. Once done, the AI is capable of automatically tailoring content specifically for that user and recommending where to go next as they explore your digital content. When AI is part of a well-formed marketing strategy, the rewards of effective personalization can be considerable. Organizations are not only seeing deeper engagement, but also increased sales and more diverse revenue streams. In this session we will dive into the technologies involved to make that happen. More info/register.

Host: Blue Sky eLearn

Presenter: Adam Hostetter, CEO, FUSE

Fri 4/16 at 2 p.m. – Big Ideas, No Budget: How to Be “Data Driven” with Limited Resources

Associations are feeling the push to adopt a data-driven culture, but leaders and teams with small budgets, small staff sizes, or other resource limitations may feel challenged to gather the data and other evidence they need. This discussion convenes panelists from small associations who have found ways to get the right evidence that advances their work. Panelists will share stories of success and lessons learned, including when—and how—to invest money allocated for research, tips for setting expectations with data-minded boards, and how to find and connect with the right research partner for your organization. More info/register.

Host: ASAE


  • Enid-Mai Jones, MA, MEd, CVEP, CDE, Senior Vice President of The Beacon Institute, LifeSpan Network
  • Christina Lewellen, CAE, Executive Director, The Association of Technology Leaders in Independent Schools
  • Laura Lewis, Chief Communications Officer, Commercial Real Estate Women Network
  • Wendy-Jo Toyama, CAE, CEO, American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine

Fri 4/16 at 3:45 p.m. – Disruptions, Deceptions, and Decisions

In this interactive program, Steve provides insights and strategies to elevate decision performance. Attendees learn to recognize and outsmart their own “lizard brain” illusions – the mental shortcuts, cognitive biases, and impulsive negativity that are amplified by disruption, and apply the strategies to their own thinking, judgment and decision making processes. More info/register (must first join Fridays@4, it’s free).

Host: Fridays@4

Presenter: Steve Haffner, CSP, decision performance expert

Tue 4/20 at 11 a.m. – Let’s Break Swapcard!

Ever since hiring industry influencer, Julius Solaris, to join them as their Head of Engagement, you’ve probably seen the name Swapcard swirling around the #eventprof community more than ever lately. Hot off the heels of their Evolve 2.0 event, they released a series of new features they want us to test—and maybe break. Swapcard has quietly released their roundtable feature—small, interactive breakout groups that allow for groups up to 100 to engage with each other. If you haven’t tried it yourself, make sure you join us. More info/register.

Host: Eventprofs Breakshit

Tue 4/20 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 4/20 at 12 p.m. – What is the Value of Government Relations to My Organization?

Join a discussion on the ROI of Government Relations to an organization and how to truly understand if your team is bringing value to your organization and industry. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: ASAE Government Relations and Advocacy Professionals Community


  • Mark Ames, Director, Government Relations, American Industrial Hygiene Association
  • David Lusk (moderator), Founder & CEO, Key Advocacy

Tue 4/20 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 4/20 at 1 p.m. – Building the 2021 Event Playbook

Due to popular demand, we’ve extended our virtual event series and are excited to continue the conversation on Pandemic Compliance and Safety at Live Events. So far, we’ve covered public health, legal and event best practices, and now it’s time to get down and dirty and learn how to effectively execute a safe in-person event. More info/register.

Host: Event Farm

Wed 4/21 at 2 p.m. – Don’t Just Create Learning Content, Sell It!

Whether you’re selling instructional products to individuals or organizations, a solid strategy for finding the right audience and selling your content to these learners is as important as creating the content itself. What should you consider to successfully price, package and promote your instructional content? Learn about strategies and tactics that can make a measurable impact on your training business. More info/register.


  • John Leh, CEO and Lead Analyst, Talented Learning
  • Barry Kelly, CEO, Thought Industries

Wed 4/21 at 3 p.m. – Let’s Talk Research Chats! Big Ideas, No Budget

Join a virtual informal gathering to discuss topics related to harnessing and applying data to advance your work. These gatherings are a perfect opportunity to connect with other association professionals, pose lingering questions, and continue the conversation from the previous Friday’s virtual panel discussion. More info/register.

Host: ASAE


  • Nicole Araujo, CAE, Client Engagement Director, Mighty Citizen
  • Lowell M. Aplebaum, CPF, FASAE, CAE, CEO & Strategy Catalyst, Vista Cova

Thu 4/22 at 2 p.m. – Winning with Data-Driven Smartech Goals

Learn about the anatomy of the association marketing funnel and how to build smartech metrics to ensure you are acquiring net new contacts and moving these leads through an effective marketing and sales process. Hear about the fundamentals of the association conversion funnel, the definition and usage of metrics such as SQLs and MQLs, and how to identify which smartech metrics are growth indicators. More info/register.

Host: ASAE

Presenters: Aimee Pagano and Maneesha Manges, HighRoad Solution

Thu 4/22 at 4 p.m. – Sponsorship Revenue and Results

Savvy association professionals recognize that standard sponsorship strategies may no longer be viable, yet the question is how to jump-start your sponsorship revenue. Hear about changes you can make that will open new doors, uncork new opportunities, and land additional income. Discuss and share ‘code red’ strategies you can use immediately. Learn new paths forward to increase your revenue and results. More info/register.

Host: ASAE Reston-Loudoun Idea Swap

Presenter: Lewis Flax, Flax Associates

Fri 4/23 at 2 p.m. – Building Trust with Evidence: Using Data and Communications to Advance Your Industry and Your Impact

This discussion will highlight stories from association leaders who have used to evidence-based communication—in advocacy initiatives, public media campaigns, and other message-driven efforts—to advance broader understanding of their mission and their members’ roles in supporting society. The panelists will describe how they’ve used research to create attention-grabbing messages that demonstrate impact and build trust. They’ll share critical skills and lessons learned that all associations can use to support their work. More info/register.

Host: ASAE


  • Jonathan Lovitz, Senior Vice President, National LGBT Chamber of Commerce
  • Magdalena Mook, CEO, International Coaching Federation
  • Ben Rome, Senior Manager of Communications, AIHA
  • Jevin West, Associate Professor & Director, Center for an Informed Public, Information School, University of Washington

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 by Jordan Elliott via Unsplash

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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