Sector and AuSAE News

  • 19 Nov 2021 5:11 AM | Brett Jeffery, CAE (Administrator)

    I’LL START WITH the obvious: 2020 and 2021 have brought a new operational mode for associations and for the members you serve. Everyone is operating in crises – and staying relevant is not only a challenge … it is a make-or-break proposition for all associations, industries, organisations and workers.

    As we have been isolated from one another, and largely unable to meet in physical spaces in our normal ways, we also find ourselves “out of sight, out of mind” such that communication isn’t another thing. It is the only thing. Communicating with our members and employees effectively impacts everything from membership and retention to worker attrition, productivity, success at the legislature and the success of our programs. And all of that adds up to your members’ sense of value from the dues they pay your association.

    The thing about a crisis is that, while disruptive, it can show what your association is made of to your membership, partners and employees. How you behave in those trying times is a glimpse into your worth, your expertise, your temperament and how you serve. Right now is when you can really show why your association is invaluable – and your members won’t understand that unless you are in touch.

    As COVID-19 response, social justice and other #TXlege issues continue to eclipse business as usual, you need to know how to get your message through with confidence … even when you don’t know what’s around the corner. Here are some of the best practices we learned and helped support with associations and other sectors throughout the past year and a half:

    In a crisis, it comes down to if your people care about you.

    This year, we all saw a lot of industries and associations in crisis.

    Some failed and some floundered. But the ones that survived and even thrived did so in large part because they had done the work beforehand of learning about their workforce and customers – establishing trust and a sense of mutual respect. This was the glue that kept people loyal and as companies had to pivot. Where people cared about the brand, they were willing to follow.

    But of course, just having the appreciation for your membership doesn’t cut it. You need to say it and you need to show it. Reliable communication on platforms your members frequent – with compelling and concise storytelling – is key. You may think your newsletter is great, but if your open and click-through rates aren’t strong, you may need to rethink your efforts. Thought leadership in trade publications, video, podcasts and live streams may be worth exploring IF your stakeholders use those platforms.

    Communication is essential.

    “Marketing is the first thing to go” people like to quip. But as it turns out, when push comes to shove, communication is a discipline that stands firmly in the middle. In a time when we’re separated physically amid great uncertainty, it is communication that keeps people informed and confident and productive. Think of the industries, colleagues and other brands in your life that took the time to tell you what they knew, what they didn’t and their plan to keep you safe and comfortable throughout the pandemic. That created loyalty and value whether or not you realized it along the way.

    When delivering unquestionable value to your members via communication, you must be timely, respective of their time and attention, attuned to their needs and make each transmission a must-view for them. The best messages are always concise, compelling, authentic and thought provoking. Every time you connect with your audience, you want them to remember why they belong to your association – and how they belong within it.

    MacGyver had the right idea.

    The 1985 series starring Richard Dean Anderson as the guy who could get out of any tricky situation with his ingenuity was fun to watch because it seemed just within the bounds of reason. In 2020, we’ve been reminded of just how cunning people can be. Watching our respective industries and colleagues piece together platforms and new best practices from other fields with their innovative mindset has taught us that the settings and tools are unimportant.

    It is not uncommon to have your association’s communication efforts revolve around what you have always done or what leadership likes to see (or even what other associations do). But if you are tired of putting them together, there’s a good chance the recipients are tired of reading them. What matters in terms of getting things done is keeping your members’ interests at heart and to feel empowered to turn over every stone (and, if you have to, blow them up with a battery, some chewing gum and a paperclip).

    Most importantly, communication is a two way street.

    The turmoil of the ongoing public health crisis, social justice conversations, political unrest, disrupted supply chains and the “great resignation” has unquestionably changed your association and your relationship with your members, who are operating in a whole new world. If you expect to remain among their priorities and to serve them in a robust way, then you need to be asking them regularly what they need, how they want to hear from you, what keeps them up at night and how you can be of service to them.

    And then you need to keep that conversation going.

    David Wyatt is Senior Vice President at Elizabeth Christian Public Relations (ECPR), a public relations firm specializing in projects involving media relations, video production, legislative and grassroots efforts, social media planning and execution, business development, event planning and crisis communications. He can be reached at

    Originally posted here

  • 10 Nov 2021 1:28 PM | Sarah Gamble (Administrator)

    AuSAE Premium Alliance Partner, Advanced Solutions International (ASI), a leading global provider of software and services for associations and non-profits, is hosting two live webinars to help Association Executives improve their member journey and set their associations up for a successful 2022.

    Is Your Membership Renewal Journey Magical or Miserable?

    Date: Tuesday, 16 November 2021
    Time: 2pm to 3pm AEDT / 4pm to 5 pm NZDT

    During what has been some of the most challenging times for associations, it’s become increasingly important for Association leaders to step into their member’s shoes and see things from their perspective. When you do -- you might just be horrified by your membership renewal process!

    In this webcast, learn how to draw insights from your data, use personalisation and automation to create a compelling, cohesive and frictionless member experience through the renewal process -- and unlock a deeper understanding of the journey members go through to engage with your association and renew.

    The following steps in the member renewal journey will be reviewed:

    • Confidence in your data to inform decisions
    • Driving personalisation
    • Using automation to direct the next steps
    • Tracking and measuring the execution

    Your members’ journey through membership renewal may just horrify you!

    Ensuring Your Member Onboarding Journey Gets Results

    Date: Tuesday, 30 November 2021
    Time: 2pm to 3pm AEDT / 4pm to 5 pm NZDT

    A clear and engaging member onboarding strategy is your best member retention tool and fundamental to your association’s continued success. In this webcast find out how to ensure your member onboarding journey gets results for your association.

    You’ll learn how you can support a defined onboarding journey, align it to your strategy, and deliver a personalised, frictionless experience for the new member.

    The webinar will cover:

    • Aligning your member onboarding journey goals with your strategy
    • Driving personalisation
    • Actively adjust journey execution to meet expected outcomes

    View full schedule at:

    About ASI

    Advanced Solutions International (ASI) is a leading global provider of products, programs, and services that help associations and non-profits improve operational and financial performance. Since 1991 we've helped thousands of clients grow revenue and reduce expenses by providing industry expertise, best practice advice, and proven solutions. 

    ASI is the developer of iMIS EMS, the world’s #1 association and non-profit software solution, and the only Engagement Management System (EMS)™ – fusing database management and web publishing into a single system – leading to operational efficiencies, revenue growth, and continuous performance improvement. Harnessing the power of Microsoft Azure’s cloud platform, iMIS EMS is purpose-built to meet the most important challenge facing associations and non-profits – Engagement. We have a global network of nearly 100 partners to provide you with a full range of services to implement and support your iMIS EMS platform.

     ASI is proud to be an AuSAE Premium Alliance Partner.  Learn more at

  • 09 Nov 2021 10:28 AM | Sarah Gamble (Administrator)

    With a very successful 2021, training over 180 associations, we are pleased to announce the return of the Digital Academy in 2022! Due to the positive feedback we received from Associations all over the globe, we’re coming back even stronger. The Digital Academy in 2022 will see double the number of courses and double the value! Register now to secure your spots.

    • Double the number of courses in 2022!
    • 20 courses to choose from, covering Association Strategy & Engage iMIS.
    • Brand new passport registration options are available.
    • 2-3 Association Strategy favourites coming back new & improved.
    • iMIS training courses condensed into 2-hour sessions every fortnight.
    • Applications are open for the Digital Scholarship program valued at $15,000.

    Enrol Now for 2022

    Digital Academy Scholarship Program

    In 2022, we would also like to give back. We’re offering eligible organisations in the association community within Australia and New Zealand with 10 x Academy Experience Company passports as part of our Digital Scholarship Program valued at $1,500 each. See the eligibility criteria and apply.

    Apply for a Scholarship

    For more information, visit 

  • 08 Nov 2021 1:20 PM | Sarah Gamble (Administrator)

    We know a common conversation you may have as an Association leader is centred on how to refine and articulate your organisation’s ‘value proposition’ and how to understand your member’s perception of the ‘value’ you give. It is an ever-evolving and important piece of work for all leaders, especially after the tumultuous environment of the past two years.

    If you want to rethink or validate your Association’s value, look no further – there’s help at hand.

    Our colleagues over at Zadro, a communications agency who work extensively with Association leaders, have launched a White Paper for Associations: Communicating Your Value to Members Year-On-Year.

    Get the insights and support you need to understand and communicate your value, to spearhead your membership retention, engagement and growth strategies for 2022 and beyond.

    Click here to access Zadro’s White Paper for Associations.

    Read the white paper, talk about it with Felicity Zadro at our upcoming AuSAE webinar: 
    How to communicate your Association's value in 2022 and beyond

    Join us on 23 November
  • 05 Nov 2021 5:10 AM | Brett Jeffery, CAE (Administrator)

    New Zealand has built upon its earth science strengths to win the 22nd International Sedimentological Congress (ISC) in 2026.

    The ISC is one of the largest international conferences dedicated to the study of sedimentary rocks and the processes by which they are formed. The ISC is rarely held in the Southern Hemisphere but in 2026 it will be hosted by Geoscience Society of New Zealand’s Sedimentology Special Interest Group (SSIG).

    The congress is expected to attract up to 1,000 participants to Tākina, Wellington Convention and Exhibition Centre and deliver an estimated $3.4m to the economy.

    Lead organiser and Senior Geologist at GNS Science, Dr Mark Lawrence, says: “This congress will be an excellent opportunity to showcase New Zealand sedimentology and for networking with international sedimentologists.”

    Tourism New Zealand works with experts across the country and the business events industry to support New Zealand to bid for and win international conferences.

    Tourism New Zealand General Manager Domestic & Business Events Bjoern Spreitzer says:“Conferences like this showcase our expertise to the world and help grow our knowledge at home. They also deliver significant economic gains that benefit the New Zealand economy.”

    The conference win is testament to both New Zealand’s strengths in earth science and its ability to provide fascinating first-hand experiences in the field, Dr Lawrence adds.

    “Geologically New Zealand is very interesting. It has a whole range of geological attributes concentrated in a relatively small geographic area. Then you have the impact of tectonics, and climate change. It’s essentially a neat, small-scale laboratory,” he says.

    The theme for the congress will be ‘Sedimentation on active plate margins through time and space’ and will include field trips across the country covering as broad a range of sedimentary systems in Zealandia as possible. Topics relating to Māori and Pacifica views of the sedimentary process will also be included.

    Dr Lawrence says the congress is an excellent opportunity to engage the next generation of sedimentologists, who will be able to attend with fewer costs since the event is close to home.

    “It will be particularly good for students who may otherwise be unlikely to attend such a prestigious event overseas. For those starting out in the field it’s a great opportunity to make these international contacts.”

    Plans are also underway to ensure the conference has wider outreach to New Zealanders, through public lectures or learning experiences for school age children.

    Wellington will be the host city, providing both a core of knowledge in earth science via Victoria University and geological affiliated research institutes GNS Science and NIWA, and a brand-new conference venue.

    WellingtonNZ General Manager David Perks says the capital’s central location makes it the perfect location for this congress.

    “Being so central to the rest of New Zealand means all the site visits to be undertaken by delegates are very accessible. And while here they’ll be able to enjoy our great eateries and bars and all Wellington has to offer, learning more about the history of New Zealand right across the road at Te Papa – New Zealand’s national museum, and getting closer to nature at Zealandia.

    “While the congress doesn’t happen until 2026, it’s great to see that Tākina is already front of mind for international organisations. It was specifically designed to host international conferences of this size.”

  • 05 Nov 2021 4:39 AM | Brett Jeffery, CAE (Administrator)

    Professional development could be just the thing to help revive members’ sense of joy around their careers—but only if it’s presented and marketed correctly, says learning strategist Tracy King.

    With a full 20 months of the pandemic shifting livelihoods and approaches to working, it’s perhaps inevitable that burnout was going to affect how members approach their careers.

    Burnout isn’t just about long hours and piles of work, though. It’s also about joy—or rather, lack of it. So how can you help your members rediscover the delight they once took in their fields? Tracy King, CAE, CEO and chief learning strategist of InspirEd, suggests that a fresh approach to professional development might be the path forward—especially given that the conversation has moved past talking through our feelings about the pandemic.

    “The question really has shifted to what creates energy for learners and constituents,” she said.

    King points to two particular things that can help turn professional development into a redemptive moment: content outcomes, or the benefits that they see from the lessons they’ve learned; and an energizing experience, often built from a strong community element.

    Naturally, learners can still feel stress piling on from external sources, including losing the time and energy being diverted to education. But King explained that if the session is worthwhile, it can be a big boost of energy to the overall psyche.

    “If I leave that space with human connection and an immediate action I can take, suddenly my attitude shifts completely and I recognize, ‘That was an amazing, well-spent piece of time there,’” she said.


    Of course, the idea of bringing people into a professional development environment doesn’t work if the people you’re trying to reach are turned off by it. If the idea of even taking part in an educational session stresses them out, you might need to rethink your marketing strategy.

    “What is really driving people to professional development, especially now, is solving problems. So they see themselves and their challenge in that program description and marketing copy, you’re gonna pique their interest,” King said. “Because right now it feels like there are so many problems, so if we can solve this little situation over here, our load will feel so much lighter.”

    King explained that it’s the content’s job to ease this load, but that the presentation can help as well. She pointed to the original use case for webinars—educational formats, designed for universities, that allowed for interactive learning, rather than as a mere one-to-many presentation format.

    “So we’ve got to take it back to its roots and think about how this virtual technology can be used as a forum for utilizing all these interactive capabilities,” she said.


    Of course, not everyone needs the same type of education at the same time—and not everyone has the time to attend in-person or online.

    So it remains important to offer options in more passive forms, such as podcasts and web content, or formats designed for asynchronous learning. But King said that ultimately, it should build to an interactive setting in the long run.

    “You get to a point in that learning journey where you realize, well, there’s a bigger next step I need to take,” she said. “And that’s where that live program comes to play.”

    By teaming the more passive and interactive settings together, it creates an opportunity for what King called a “connected constellation” of options that come together to offer a deeper learning experience.

    “If we can, at least with some of our high-priority content, create a more networked experience, we’ll develop a relationship with our learner constituents through our content,” she said.


    King suggests that associations shouldn’t ask what their members want—as they might suggest more tactical solutions that don’t get at the underlying problems—but that they should listen intently to conversations in the community, in a way that goes beyond surveys.

    “Often our constituents don’t know what’s going to relieve this heaviness,” she said.

    But by listening in on conversations happening on community engagement platforms and social media, you may be able to uncover threads that can be turned into opportunities for education.

    “Really be listening for where the friction is in their work-life balance and in their career,” King added.

    Originally posted here

  • 04 Nov 2021 11:30 AM | Sarah Gamble (Administrator)

    On the Take 5 with Associations show presented by AuSAE and ASI, we chat with Lyndal Macpherson, Chief Executive Officer of the Australasian Society for Ultrasound in Medicine (ASUM), to see how they are keeping their members engaged and how they are embracing technology.

    Our host Paul Ramsbottom, Managing Director of ASI, talks with Lyndal about the recent launch of the ASUM Connect online community platform and a successful awareness campaign.

    Lyndal says, “Our online community provides 2-way communication which has helped improve member engagement and our work with members.”

    “One of the great things with the online community is the single sign-on with our database. Everything is linked together and makes the experience much easier for members,” added Lyndal.

    ASUM are also looking at webinars and different educational tools for members. Lyndal says, “But, it’s how we integrate the technology and get the benefits. The technology is almost impossible to keep up with, as things change so much. It’s a never-ending battle to try and understand it and see what is fit for purpose.”

    From innovation, collaboration, and learnings, Lyndal’s shares a success story from their Medical Ultrasound Awareness Month to get people to understand what a sonographer is and help raise awareness in the community.

    Last month, ASUM received a member request via their online community platform to provide posters for their members to use, put in department or private practice. This resource was a way to help their members spark a conversation or educate the public as they come through the practice.

    This initiative enabled ASUM to collaborate with members, test ideas and poster concepts and ensure all specialities were included.

    Lyndal says, “It was a fantastic success. We were able to measure downloads and engagement on social – it was a really successful and campaign.”

    By embracing digital technology, ASUM can create meaningful connections for members and continuously improve their member experience. 

    Click the link to give it a watch.

    Would you like to participate in the Take 5 with Associations web show? Contact the team at AuSAE via or 1300 764 576.

    About The Australasian Society for Ultrasound in Medicine

    The Australasian Society for Ultrasound in Medicine (ASUM) is the Peak Body for Medical Ultrasound in Australia and New Zealand. ASUM is promoting ultrasound excellence and ensuring quality health outcomes when using ultrasound.

    About ASI

    Advanced Solutions International (ASI) is a leading global provider of products, programs, and services that help associations and non-profits improve operational and financial performance. Since 1991 we've helped thousands of clients grow revenue and reduce expenses by providing industry expertise, best practice advice, and proven solutions. 

    ASI is the developer of iMIS EMS, the world’s #1 association and non-profit software solution, and the only Engagement Management System (EMS)™ – fusing database management and web publishing into a single system – leading to operational efficiencies, revenue growth, and continuous performance improvement. Harnessing the power of Microsoft Azure’s cloud platform, iMIS EMS is purpose-built to meet the most important challenge facing associations and non-profits – Engagement. We have a global network of nearly 100 partners to provide you with a full range of services to implement and support your iMIS EMS platform.

    ASI is an AuSAE Premium Alliance Partner -

  • 03 Nov 2021 8:27 AM | Sarah Gamble (Administrator)

    After almost two years that have been like no other, it is now more important than ever to recognise individuals making extraordinary contributions to their Associations and the sector more broadly across Australia and New Zealand.

    Nominations for the 2022 Association Influencers Awards are now open and will close at midnight on Sunday, 5 December 2021.

    Associations are well known for bringing together people and making a positive impact through their value across society, the economy, and the environment. In it’s second year, the Australasian Society of Association Executive’s (AuSAE) Association Influencers Awards provide an excellent opportunity to recognise people who make significant contributions to the lives of the people they represent and serve.

    The awards were established in 2020 to recognise association leaders for their outstanding contribution of the sector in Australia and New Zealand. In the inaugural year, AuSAE recognised 13 Association Influencers.

    Toni Brearley, Chief Executive Office of AuSAE says, "It’s our privilege to recognise outstanding individuals making a significant and lasting impact within our tribe and setting the benchmark for association professionals into the future".

    Countless people play a vital role in creating a stronger association sector and making their community a better place to live, work and play.

    A panel judges the awards, including representatives from a group of prominent leaders in Australia and New Zealand with knowledge, experience, and passion for the association sector.

    Associations have gone above and beyond to help their members and community during the COVID-19 pandemic, drought, bushfires, and floods. Now, it's time to recognise individuals for their outstanding contributions to the association sector.

    Nominating is simple and can be done online. More details on how to nominate and eligibility information can be found here.

    Take the first step and register your interest to nominate here. 

  • 29 Oct 2021 7:17 AM | Brett Jeffery, CAE (Administrator)

    Over the last year we’ve seen the insidious rise of ransomware and other common attack vectors attacks across the globe and even here in Aotearoa New Zealand - with one of the most recent high profile ones taking down the networks at the Waikato District Health Board.

    In a time where we are constantly being disrupted, this upswing in attacks reminds us that we need to be ever vigilant of this type of activity. In this session we’ll be looking back over 2021 at all the highlights of the year, the learnings we’re gathering and also share latest news on how we can be prepared for any attack.

     Our speakers will be:

    Peter Bailey, the Executive General Manager at Aura.

    As Executive General Manager of Aura Information Security, Peter’s role comprises of two key functions: delivering high quality customer service and solutions; and helping businesses of all shapes and sizes understand the need for robust security practices.   He is part of the Kordia executive team headed by Group CEO Shaun Rendell.

    Hilary Walton, CISO Kordia Group

    Hilary Walton is the Chief Information Security Office of the Kordia Group Limited, responsible for the overall security position of Kordia in both Australia and New Zealand.  She is an Information and Technology and digital business transformation leader, and hosts a diverse background in organisational psychology and risk management.  She also has significant experience from offshore roles, having worked for Mi5 in London, and the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympic Games leading the Information Security programme.

    This is a free online event thanks to the support of Kordia.  The second event in this series is planned to be in person in February 2022.

    Register here

  • 29 Oct 2021 7:09 AM | Brett Jeffery, CAE (Administrator)

    Someone recently asked me, “your blog posts keep coming and coming. Where do you find all these ideas?”

    Ideas are a renewable resource in the best sense of the phrase. Thoughts spawn more thoughts. We all have access to more idea opportunities at our disposal than we could ever possibly do.

    So what do you do when good ideas seem scarce?

    Train your brain and the minds of your staff.

    1. Commit to a deadline: I’ve committed to publishing a post every Tuesday and Thursday, and so my mind works away in the background identifying and sorting through publishable ideas.
    2. Create space: Usually, an epiphany strikes during a quiet time like walking, and I’ll voice record a few notes, so I don’t forget the idea.
    3. Remind yourself of the objective: When I first set out on my morning walk, I usually think, “it’s time to come up with this week’s post idea.”

    A New Metric for Associations

    Start coming up with ideas, and you might find that more and more great ideas keep coming your way.

    You are never going to please everyone” is one of the truest statements in association management. Members have different lived experiences, so each one perceives things differently. Some members may LOVE your keynote, while others won’t. Some people flock to the reception while many others stay in their room. Some use the research, while others can’t be bothered, but they’ll read the short articles.

    It is emotionally difficult to pour your heart and soul into an event, or report, or any other member-facing endeavor and get a more tepid response than you hoped for, or worse criticism. The natural impulse to these reactions is to pull back, make your output so generic, no one can criticize it. But when no one can criticize, no one can fully engage either.

    Having a few haters (and lots of lovers) might be a good metric of success for associations.

    By Amanda Kaiser 

The Australasian Society of Association Executives (AuSAE)

Australian Office:
Address: Unit 6, 26 Navigator Place, Hendra QLD 4011 Australia
Free Call: +61 1300 764 576
Phone: +61 7 3268 7955

New Zealand Office:
Address: 159 Otonga Rd, Rotorua 3015 New Zealand
Phone: +64 27 249 8677

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