Association Brain Food Weekly: 8.20.21

Ocean Isle Beach (NC) pier – inspiration for a weekly list of free educational events and resources for the association community

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

Ocean Isle Beach (NC) pier – inspiration for a weekly list of free educational events and resources for the association community

Online learner/virtual attendee engagement. WBT Systems knows what’s on your mind. While reviewing their website traffic reports, they discovered a common theme in their five most popular blog posts: how to increase online learner and virtual attendee engagement. If you’re involved in the design or delivery of virtual/hybrid conferences or online learning programs, check out the ideas and advice shared in their post.

Volunteer training. Recruiting and retaining volunteers is a mighty challenge when members have no time to spare. But what if you could show members a pathway that allows them to develop the skills and experience not only for the task at hand but for the next level of volunteering—or the next step in their career? Billhighway explains how a volunteer pathway and competencies matrix can help you manage, train and retain volunteers. Bonus idea: a competencies matrix for staff committee liaisons—brilliant!

Member engagement. During a recent MemberSuite webinar, Greg Melia, CAE, CEO of the Customer Experience Professionals Association, and Julie Sciullo, CEO of Association Analytics, discussed how to navigate member engagement at this weird time. I love their advice for taking advantage of “digital exhaust” and the “great resignation,” as well as keeping the best of pandemic-induced decisions.

Association communication trends. Associations are communicating more frequently than ever before but still struggle to articulate their member value proposition and customize communications for different cohorts. Read about the state of association communication in the 10th edition of Association Adviser’s annual Association Communications Benchmarking Report.

Volunteer SMEs and product development. Tim Hopkins, senior consultant at McKinley Advisors, describes a new model for the product development process that prevents volunteers from hindering innovation. In this model, “association leaders identify explicit roles for volunteers and create natural boundaries that ensure volunteers remain focused contributors.”

Scenario planning. Some associations seemed paralyzed during the pandemic, unable to shift gears and move away from a suddenly irrelevant strategic plan. Rasheeda Childress at Associations Now shares the advice of Nikki Haton Shanks, CAE, strategist at Association Laboratory, on scenario planning and how it provides a framework that allows your association to act nimbly in uncertain times.

Quick hits

  • Five reasons to establish an internal users group for your AMS/CRM. (Wes Trochlil)
  • How to beat burnout and help your team overcome feeling like there’s not enough time in the day. (Ashley Neal, Sidecar)
  • Fostering a culture of belonging in a hybrid workplace. (Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic and Katarina Berg, Harvard Business Review)
  • You almost certainly can’t consistently do the kind of work that demands serious mental focus for more than about three or four hours a day. (Oliver Burkeman)

Good eats

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

  • A week of seafood at home and at the beach, starting with Vietnamese caramel bluefish with a nuked sweet potato and roasted broccoli on the side.
  • At the beach, shrimp pasta is a tradition as is sipping white wine while shelling and deveining the shrimp. I made a broth with the shrimp shells and used some of it to cook the pasta and the rest in the shrimp sauce. The pasta sauce included onion, garlic, tomatoes, white wine, shrimp broth, shrimp, basil pesto, pasta water and butter.
  • Back home, I was in the mood for cozy. This one-pot chicken and mushrooms did the trick. On the side, roasted red potatoes with rosemary and garlic, and a collards sauté with bacon, red bell, poblano, red onion, carrots and jalapeno.

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

Fri 8/20 at 10 a.m.* – Events Reimagined: New Rules of Engagement

Your association’s events will need new creative content to draw in your membership, new prospects, and sponsors. To engage is also to entertain—your event should be a production that drives registrations and results in rave reviews. Learn how to captivate and engage your virtual and in-person audiences, combat Zoom-fatigue and reduce drop-off, keep viewers hooked like the entertainment industry does, and monetize your events without boring your attendees and disappointing your sponsors. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: New York Society of Association Executives

Presenters: Michael Candela, EVP Partnership Sales, and Deborah Sas, Senior Director, Partnership Sales, Multiview

*All times are Eastern Daylight Time unless otherwise noted.

Fri 8/20 at 12 p.m. – Exhale @ Lunch with Black In Events Network

As part of the Black in Events Exhale campaign, the team at BIEN and twine have teamed up to power a networking lunch where we will share stories, tips, and resources to support our community. Bring your lunch, the challenges you’re facing, and what you need help with. Come lean on your BIE network and tap into the brilliant minds that make up this community. More info/register.

Hosts: Black in Events Network and twine

Fri 8/20 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 8/20 at 4 p.m. – ASAE Annual Meeting Debrief: Share What You Learned!

If you attended the ASAE Annual, please join us at this debrief to share your learnings. Hear your peers’ top tips from this essential annual gathering of association leaders. Even if you were unable to attend this year, you’re still welcome to join us. This session will provide an excellent opportunity to learn from your peers as they discuss their favorite tips and tools gained from the event, as well as to enjoy some Friday afternoon networking. More info/register (must join before registering).

Host: Fridays@4

Presenter: Kenjie Davis, The AMS Guy

Mon 8/23 at 1 p.m. – Aligning Digital Events with Sponsorships (Chatting with Agnes & Cecilia)

This series of 15- to 20-minute videos covers 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.

Guests: Mary Beth Micucci and Bruce Rosenthal


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

Mon 8/23 at 2 p.m. – Future Proof: Extend Event Impact Year-round

How do you connect and educate people year-round in an online community? Hear from experts in human design, human connection and human storytelling as they share powerful examples and relevant action items for creating communities in digital environments. More info/register.

Host: JUNO


  • Don Neal, 360 Live Media
  • Kyle Short, Wisdom Capture
  • Josh Hotsenpiller, JUNO

Tue 8/24 at 11 a.m. – The War for Talent: How to Recruit and Retain the Right People

Learn how to attract and align your talent, fit talent into appropriate levels, and get the most out of talent. 1.5 CAE credits. More info/register.

Host: U.S. Transaction Corp.

Presenter: Don Schmincke, Author, Speaker, Sage Leadership

Tue 8/24 at 12 p.m. – The New Playbook for In-Person Events: Enhancing the Experience while Managing Risk

Learn what has changed for in-person events and what you need to be aware of as you plan for your next event; what the future of events looks like, including the latest event trends and how to manage risk; how event hosts are using best practices from their virtual events to build successful in-person events; and new ways to use event apps and features to boost engagement, including polls, games, and pre/post-event activities.1  CMP credit. More info/register.

Host: Event MB


  • Andrew Pearson, Chief Marketing Officer, Socio
  • Melissa Jones Clark, Director, National Accounts & Brand Experience, Meeting Tomorrow
  • Tina Halpain, Founder & Owner, ProPlanit
  • Miguel Neves, Editor-in-Chief, EventMB, a Skift brand

Tue 8/24 at 12 p.m. – Measure and Deliver Value Through the Power of Data (7 Change Actions Webinar)

Analytics and insights can help you discover and understand your key audiences. It can also help you create memorable, targeted, and successful events, experiences and other solutions that answers their needs, boosts your brand, and ultimately delivers revenue and brand loyalty. Yet, not all measurement strategies are created equal. Effectively gathering and using insights requires matching your strategy to your bottom line and SMART business goals. Learn how to unlock the power (and fun!) of measurement, analytics, and data. 1 CMP credit. More info/register.

Host: PCMA

Presenter: Johna Burke, Global Managing Director, International Association for the Measurement and Evaluation of Communication

Tue 8/24 at 2 p.m. – Don’t Be Derailed By Delta: Actions You Need to Take Right Now to Ensure the Success of Your Upcoming Events

With the delta variant causing a fresh round of uncertainty, many event professionals are saying “here we go again.” Learn about the actions you need to take right now to protect your upcoming events and ways to future-proof your strategy so you’re prepared for whatever comes next. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: Gather Voices


  • Tim Turner, Covid Compliance Officer
  • Steve Boyce, Co-Founder and Principal, beedance
  • Michael Hoffman, CEO, Gather Voices

Tue 8/24 at 2 p.m. – Reimagining Sustainability and Social Impact in the Events Industry

As we return to in-person events, it’s time to take a new look at how sustainability can be woven into our meeting programs. Hear how the events industry can inspire and advance sustainability and social impact not only in the way we operate, but also through our ability to inspire action. Join us to reimagine the possibilities of a journey that embraces equity, resilience, circularity, and climate action for a more prosperous society. 1 CMP credit. More info/register.

Host: MeetingsNet


  • Mariela McIlwraith, Vice President Sustainability and Industry Advancement, Events Industry Council
  • Yalmaz Siddiqui, Vice President, Corporate Sustainability at MGM Resorts International, and chair of the Event Industry Council Committee on Sustainability and Social Impact

Wed 8/25 at 12 p.m. – Planning for Your Association’s Digital Transformation

Learn how you can effectively plan for future investments in technology for your association’s digital transformation strategy for improving member engagement, how to avoid common mistakes that could lead to saving your association hundreds of thousands of dollars, and how these improvements should enable your continuous performance improvement. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: ASI

Presenter: David Parkinson, Performance Improvement Leader, ASI

Wed 8/25 at 1 p.m. – Netflix-ing Your Association

Hear how you can transform your website into a Netflix-like experience with a positive impact on your recruitment, retention and revenue. Learn how to measure the gap between your current association’s website and a Netflix experience, the value of closing that gap and using data to customize a member’s experience, and best practices in transforming your digital engagement in as little as 90 days. 0.5 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: Association Analytics


  • Dan Stevens, President, WorkerBee.TV
  • Greg Pollack, Vice President of Sales, Association Analytics

Wed 8/25 at 1 p.m. – Strategies for Riding the Next Wave of Training Transformation

During the last 18 months, learning programs everywhere have been forced to pivot and deliver training digitally to both internal and external constituents. But now, as organizations return to the workplace and calendars begin to fill with in-person training and events, how can you stand out from the competition? Hear from learning leaders who are driving training program innovation and gain practical insights to successfully navigate continued turbulence. More info/register.

Host: Talented Learning


  • Clare Marsch, Senior Vice President of Training and Development at the American Bankers Association
  • Brittany Montgomery, Learning Consultant at Catalytic
  • John Leh, CEO and Lead Analyst at Talented Learning

Wed 8/25 at 1 p.m. – Must-Know Contract Clauses

Hear about strategies to address health and safety concerns that may arise as we return to in-person meetings, contracting lessons from the pandemic, and the new contract provisions developed in response. Learn how to create solid clauses to protect your organization from future unforeseeable events, and protect against hidden fees and charges in future contracts. 1 CMP credit. More info/register.

Host: Meetings Today

Presenter: Joshua L. Grimes, Esq., principal of Grimes Law Offices, LLC

Wed 8/25 at 1 p.m. – Match Your Audience to the Right Social Channels: Uncover New Opportunities and Maximize Campaign ROI

Learn how to use social insights to maximize your social marketing success, reach the right audiences and identify new opportunities. Find out how to realize your true brand potential on TikTok, Instagram, Reddit, Facebook and more; go beyond standard demographics to understand how and where to reach your social audience; and track campaign ROI, engagement, sentiment and competition by channel. More info/register.

Host: American Marketing Association

Presenter: NetBase Quid

Wed 8/25 at 2 p.m. – Make Your Meetings a Ca$h Cow: Extending the Life and Revenue of Your Virtual & Hybrid Meetings

Your organization is creating a lot of great content through your conferences and webinars. But once the event is over, how can you leverage this content to keep making money for your organization? Learn how to change your meeting mindset and strategy to tap into new revenue streams, capitalize on shifts in continuing education wants and requirements, reuse and repurpose your virtual event content to increase non-dues revenue, and monetize matchmaking and create paid engagement opportunities driven from event analytics. More info/register.

Host: Matrix Group


  • Teri Carden, founder of 100Reviews and ReviewMyAMS
  • Bryan Clark, Director of Strategic Partnerships of Matrix Group
  • Joanna Pineda, CEO & Chief Troublemaker of Matrix Group, the makers of the BeSpeake virtual meeting platform

Wed 8/25 at 2 p.m. – Reimagining Associations for a Post-Pandemic World, Part 1

From trends outside associations to new constituent habits and expectations to technology, we’ll look at what associations should do to chart a course forward and how they can incorporate an organizational agility and problem-solving mindset to overcome present and future challenges. More info/register (Note: their registration form doesn’t accept gmail addresses).

Host: Fonteva


  • Lowell Aplebaum, FASAE, CAE, CPF, CEO & Strategy Catalyst, Vista Cova
  • Mary Byers, CAE, CSP, Association Advisor and Author, Race for Relevance
  • Jeff De Cagna, FRSA, FASAE, Executive Advisor, Foresight First
  • Gayathri Kher, President, fusionSpan

Wed 8/25 at 2 p.m. – The One Stop, Government Relations Shop

What’s a resource-strapped government relations professional to do when faced with issues to monitor, stakeholders to manage, and advocates to rally on minimal funds? Learn tips and tricks for staying organized and working smarter, not harder, to achieve your goals, including how to stretch a tight budget, automate tasks to save time, and prioritize time and money for the win. More info/register.

Host: FiscalNote

Wed 8/25 at 2 p.m. – #RealTalk Dialogue Series: A Conversation with Young Professionals

We will examine age discrimination and the many roles young professionals hold in the meeting and events industry. Unlearn conscious biases and recognize the positive aspects of including young professionals in your employee sourcing strategy. Learn how to advantageously present yourself during the interviewing process. Find out how to create an inclusive environment for young professionals. Understand how MPI is empowering the MPI Young Professionals Advisory Council to build pillars in the community, especially assisting those transitioning from student to industry professional. 1 CMP credit. More info/register (possible fee for MPI non-members).

Host: MPI


  • Marques Davison
  • Jessica Ballard, Professional in Residence Faculty Member, Utah Valley University, Woodbury School of Business
  • Zaman Ishaad, CED, CMP, DES, Enterprise Experience Strategist, NexTech AR Solutions
  • Cleo Battle, CDME, CTA, President & CEO, Louisville Tourism

Wed 8/25 at 4 p.m. – Mindful Networking with Monica Dillingham

Join a 45-minute, small group meetings with someone we think you should get to know. No formal presentations. This is a chance to intentionally expand your network, exchange ideas, and get some advice. More info/register.

Host: Association Women Technology Champions

Guest: Monica Dillingham, Chief Technology Officer of NACUBO

Wed 8/25 at 4 p.m. – We Read It So You Don’t Have To

You picked the book and we read it. Attend the final session of our summer series to get the main highlights and takeaways from Priya Parker’s, Art of Gathering. The best part? You don’t have to read a single page—we’ll share everything you need to know. More info/register.

Host: 360 Live Media

Wed 8/25 at 4 p.m. – The Insider’s Guide to Core Web Vitals

Google has announced a major algorithm change that could have a huge impact on your website’s visibility. Core Web Vitals are a set of specific factors that Google considers important to a website’s user experience. Learn how to locate your Core Web Vitals report inside Google’s Search Console, get a walk through the report so you understand exactly where you stand, and hear about three quick fixes to improve your results. More info/register.

Host: Gulo

Presenters: Zach Wilson, Managing Partner, and Jen Hanson, Director of Marketing, Gulo

Thu 8/26 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. – Community Thrive! Virtual Summit 2021

This gathering of thought leaders in the community and association space will give you the information and resources you need to make sound decisions about the future of online communities and engagement within your associations. Our speakers will help you strategize for longevity and relevance in a digital world. More info/register.

Host: Community By Association

Thu 8/26 at 11 a.m. – 3 Features to Look for in an Online Community Platform as an Association

Learn how advertising, networking opportunities and a user-friendly experience work together to benefit community platforms, how to use features of your platform to increase engagement and sense of community, and how to raise non-dues revenue through a great member experience. 1.5 CAE credits. More info/register.

Host: U.S. Transactions Corp.

Presenter: Benjamin Muscolino, President & CEO, Breezio

Thu 8/26 at 11 a.m. – Meetings: Return to Relevance (and Revenue)

As we navigate an uneven recovery and still uncertain future, forward-thinking leaders are grappling with hard questions about their meetings, revenue and engagement and some are already pushing hard to innovate models that haven’t changed significantly in decades. Listen to the panelists discuss the current landscape, innovation, investment and what’s on the line for their groups. More info/register.

Host: CEO Update


  • Deborah Bowen, American College of Healthcare Executives
  • Gary Shapiro, Consumer Technology Association
  • Matthew Shay, National Retail Federation

Thu 8/26 at 2 p.m. – Content Curation 101: How to Elevate Your Brand and Connect with Your Audience

Many of us do not have the time or resources to generate multiple pieces of original content on a regular basis. At the same time, associations are still looked to as authority figures when it comes to disseminating leading information in their industries. This session will explore the importance of effective content curation and how to share content in an efficient and meaningful way. 1 CAE credit. More info/register.

Host: ASAE

Presenter: Erica Salm Rench, director of client success,

Thu 8/26 at 3 p.m. – Strengthen Your Association’s Value Proposition

How can you fortify your association’s value proposition? Hear real-world examples of how other associations have improved by strengthening their value proposition. More info/register.

Host: Tecker International

Presenter: KiKi L’Italien, senior consultant, Tecker International

Fri 8/27 at 12 p.m. – Summer Wrap Up Party with Black In Events Network

As we get ready to head back into a busy and hectic fall, let’s take a minute to enjoy the last lazy days of summer with our growing community. Reunite or meet with new peers and discover new possibilities as we close summer 2021. More info/register.

Hosts: Black in Events Network and twine

Fri 8/27 at 12 p.m. – Finding Wellness and Balance: Life After Lockdown

In this highly interactive session that guarantees to get participants out of their chairs and moving with yoga, desk exercises, and mindfulness practice, learn how we can put ourselves and our health first to create a more resilient and revitalized life after lockdown. Participants will leave the session with self-care tips and resources that they can easily integrate into conferences, workdays, and everyday lives. 1 CMP credit. More info/register.

Host: MPI

Presenter: Dr. Kim Bercovitz, Ph.D., Founder, X bytes and Byte-Size Wellness Academy

Fri 8/27 at 4 p.m. – Advancing Ethical Understandings in Diverse Teams

What happens when you get a group of people together who have different perspectives, values and morals? It sounds like the beginning of a joke, but figuring it out is essential to the success of your organization. Learn how to manage an organization or team successfully while honoring those differences and advancing ethical understandings. More info/register (must join before registering).

Host: Fridays@4

Presenter: Peggy McElgunn, president and CEO of Global Professional Services, PC, and Proven Quality Practices

Tue 8/31 at 1 p.m. – Crafting the Event Experience: A Virtual Design Workshop

Your event invitation and website are the first touchpoints of any event experience. They set the tone, trigger action, and build expectations and excitement of what’s to come, hence, mastering these two components is critical for the success of your event. Join us for a live and interactive workshop led by master event experience crafter, Ryan Costello, where he will walk you through how to leverage invitations and websites to craft an event experience from the start. He’ll be highlighting helpful tools available, places to gather design inspiration, and show you how it all comes together. CMP credit. More info/register.

Host: Event Farm

Presenter: Ryan Costello, co-founder, Event Farm, and chief strategy officer, MemberSuite

Tue 8/31 at 1 p.m. – Be a Participant of the World’s Largest Non-Dues Revenue Resource

Ideation sessions are designed to produce real solutions to real-world challenges. The challenge? Associations need more ideas for generating more non-dues revenue. To answer that problem, we’re hosting a 2-hour interactive experience—a virtual event where association professionals can generate new non-dues revenue ideas together. This is an investment of your time and energy, but everyone will walk away with A HUGE document of new ideas. More info/register.

Host: Non-Dues-A-Palooza / 100 Reviews

Wed 9/1 at 4 p.m. – AWTC Salon: Shine Theory

Shine Theory is a concept from the book Big Friendship: How We Keep Each Other Close, by Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman. The authors describe this concept as a practice of mutual investment in each other, in helping someone be their best self—and relying on their help in return. In AWTC, we focus on helping other women succeed, through knowledge, recognition, and community. This sharing of knowledge and resources aligns well with Shine Theory. So what might this mean in practice? More info/register.

Host: Association Women Technology Champions (AWTC)

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 by Wednesday afternoon.

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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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