Did You Know?

Association Innovation Starts at the Top, but It’s Increasingly a 360-Degree Process

By Association Adviser staff • November 5, 2012

By Association Adviser staff


to our latest Association Adviser enews reader poll, nearly one-third (32.5 percent) of
associations get their inspiration for new ideas from their executive director
or board. No surprise there, but nearly as many (27.2 percent) of the 151 respondents
to our latest online survey told us that anyone at the organization can submit
ideas. That’s a trend that’s really picking up steam according to many of the
association leaders we’re profiled over the past year.

Nearly one in four (22.5 percent) associations still rely on tried and true senior
management meetings or retreats and nearly 18 percent still start with
department heads meeting with teams. But, the move toward an all-inclusive
ideation culture should help associations gain relevance with their members,
particularly younger members and staff.

have a very collaborative atmosphere here and I rely very heavily on my team,”
related Julie Coons, president and CEO of the Electronic Retailing
Association. “I’m very open to new ideas, and I have very smart people around me
who each know more about their areas of expertise than I do.”




So how does ERA know when it has finally hit on the right idea?

there is no one “right way,” noted Coons. “I encourage my team to pick a
solution they think will work. I just want to be assured they’ve thought it
through with data so that if it doesn’t work out the way we planned, there’s
very little collateral damage.”