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Engaging First-Time Conference Attendees

Engaging First-Time Conference Attendees: 4 Tactics to Try

Of course you want to provide an exceptional experience for ALL of your conference attendees, but ensuring that happens for your first-time attendees is particularly important. Their decision to attend future events (and possibly even renew their membership) depends heavily on that first experience, so going the extra mile for those folks, in particular, is certainly worth it.

What does “going the extra mile” for your first-time attendees look like? Here are a few tactics worth trying:

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4 Skills that Fantastic Small Staff Association Pros Must Have

Posted by Sarah Hill

Small Staff Association leaders have to embrace their “jack of all trades” jobs, even more than leaders with larger teams. While each Small Staff Association Pro has a lot of different skills in his or her tool belt, here are a few that can make that leadership go from good to great.


  • Writing

Small Staff Association pros wind up having to write. A lot. Those documents range from blogs and emails to legal documents, proposals, and even grants. The problem is that there’s just no telling which you’ll need during your tenure as a small staff association pro, but you know your writing will be important. If you feel this is a skill you should brush up on, there are plenty of resources available online. I bet there could even be a writing meet-up group in your community.

  •  Social Media

I know, I know. You’ve heard it before. “Associations need to be social.” Well besides the fact that we can help you with that, it’s easier to begin than you think. Don’t start off seeing social media skills as a huge pile of lessons you have to learn. Besides, the best way to learn social media isn’t necessarily to read articles or guide (although ours is great, helpful, especially for small staffs and free!) but to just click around and try it yourself. Every day, spend a few minutes exploring one site or another. Even if you don’t make accounts, just go to the website and see what the platform is all about. When you meet with members, casually ask what platforms they use and how they use them. You’ll already be on your way to becoming a social media master!

  • Conflict Management

At every gathering of association pros, there is a reluctant but collective mention of conflict: among the board, the leaders, members, or between the groups. Nobody enjoys the conflict, but it’s an unfortunate reality of association leadership. But as a leader, you can smooth things over and take those conflicts and not only help resolve them, but also turn them into progressive, teachable moments. Conflict management is so subjective, however, so it may take a little time and practice to feel really confident in it. Remember that great communication is always at the core!

  • Time Management

This one you already know. Juggle, juggle, juggle! Mastering time management is something you’ll get together pretty quickly; for small staff association professionals it’s sink or swim. But there are always ways to improve! Association pros benefit from time management tips and tricks like making lists, keeping an organized calendar, detailed prioritization and delegation. Also don’t forget to stick to regular routines, adhere to pre-determined time limits, and say no sometimes!

Association professionals have many skills in their bag of tricks. An AMS is another piece to the puzzle that can lead to great association management. But what is an AMS, anyway? We have the answer! Download our free guide by clicking below! 

What is an AMS, exactly? Download our free guide and find out!

Topics: association management, association leadership, small staff association, Small Staff Chatter

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