Friday, September 04, 2015

Change Expert, Peter de Jager interviewed on Business In Motion

Watch and listen to this interview with change expert and keynote speaker, Peter de Jager talking candidly about change on radio show, Business In Motion.

George Torok Host of Business in Motion Business Speaker Listen to Business in Motion audio PodCasts On iTunes Business in Motion on Facebook Share/Save/Bookmark

Friday, May 15, 2015

Friday, April 24, 2015

Are Your Meetings a Features of Membership?

The ROI of Membership

By Ed Rigsbee, CAE, CSP

Here is the bitter pill…if non-members can attend…the meeting is not a feature of membership. However, the discount on registration is.
Nearly every membership organization can further its mission more effectively, with more members. More members generally translate to larger meetings. To recruit more members, especially Millennials, there must be an outstanding perceived return on investment (ROI) offered.

Contemporary membership research, surveys, and reports all indicate that many membership organizations are challenged with trying to justify why one should join their ranks. There is the good old admonishment, “Join to support your industry.” This has become increasingly ineffective.  Let’s not forget the old standby, ”We have great networking.” Perhaps your organization has progressed to a more contemporary “We have great live and online communities”?

Yet, something is still missing…a truly compelling reason to join. What’s an association executive or director of membership to do?

Accelerate Your Action

In order to grow your membership and member meeting attendance, perhaps it is time to push against conventional wisdom and look in a new direction? Consider the inaccuracy that most of what is offered up by membership organizations as “member benefits” are in fact, features—perhaps features of membership. For an organization’s services, activities, or other things to be considered “features of membership” said services or activities must be available only to members.

Industry benefit activities are those things, like advocacy, that create great value for everyone in the industry—not just the members. These activities are great customer service accomplishments for the longer-term members that care about them. However, they are quite ineffective in recruiting new members—because they receive the value without having to become a member.

Show Me the Money

While advocacy generally is not a feature of membership, a legislative update…distributed only to members clearly is a membership feature which will save the member time, money, and avoidance of regulatory pain…all buying motives. These buying motives are the actual benefit…the things that make your members’ lives better…the things that will motivate non-members to join. Like the above mentioned feature of membership, discount on meeting registration, saving money is the benefit and not the meeting.

Motivating Features

Consider grabbing the opportunity to drive more value, more member ROI, for members at your meeting. There is currently much discussion in the meetings industry about “meeting ROI” but very little about “member ROI.” What the members get in exchange for their annual dues should be important to any association executive. To effectively increase “member ROI” at any of your meetings, consider including in your scheduled offering a number of “member-only” educational, networking, and/or social sessions. You will find this most effective at times when multiple activities are taking place at the meeting so there will be something for non-members to do. And, remember to develop some specific member-only education or activities for your long-term members. They need more than simply a place to see their friends once a year.

As you now know, it is only the registration discount that is the true feature of membership. Add to this feature some member-only activities and those activities also become features of membership. You will greatly increase the total perceived member ROI (member-only). You will be offering your current members more compelling reasons to attend your meetings and to retain their membership. For the non-members, this is like the take-away close—a powerful reason for the non-member to join your organization.

Influence the Decision to Join

There is no advantage in vague or fuzzy-bunny “member value proposition” marketing. In order to grow your membership base, which will increase your opportunity to influence more members to attend your meetings; it is crucial that your organization clearly communicate its member value proposition. A reasonably easy and inexpensive way to achieve this goal is to calculate the member-perceived real-dollar value of each “member-only” feature of membership. Communicating your organization’s real-dollar member ROI via your website and other marketing channels, both printed and electronic, will go a long way to telling your value proposition story and influencing the decision to join.

Give ‘em What They Want

There is the question of which segment(s) you will get the best “bang for your buck” in influencing both membership and meeting attendance? Generally it will be those people that are newer to the industry. They truly have the most to gain from membership. To influence this segment, you have to communicate how it is in their best interest to participate with your organization. During recruitment, is not the time for talking to these younger people about all the great value the organization delivers to the industry. There will be plenty of time for that after they have engaged in your organization and will better understand the value. 
Now is the time to communicate the great value that your organization delivers to its members—the ROI of membership based on each member-only feature. It is your job to help them understand the real-dollar value of each of these features of membership that your organization offers. This will hopefully include a number of new “member-only” activities at your upcoming meetings.

If you would like to explore further, the financial veracity of each of your features of membership for consideration in creating new, maintaining existing, and sun setting your various products, services, and activities, email your request to and I’ll forward back my Features Framework Exercise from The ROI of Membership-Today’s Missing Link for Explosive Growth

Copyright © 2015 Ed Rigsbee
Ed Rigsbee holds both the Certified Association Executive and the Certified Speaking Professional accreditations—an honor that only about a handful of people globally enjoy. Many of the ideas in this article are adapted from his book titled, The ROI of Membership-Today’s Missing Link for Explosive Growth.  In addition to teaching associations the qualitative process for determining member ROI and strategy, he is the CEO of Cigar PEG-Philanthropy through Fun, a non-profit public charity he founded in 1999. More about Ed’s work at

Ed Rigsbee, CSP, CAE
The ROI Guy: Alliances, Relationships & Associations
Rigsbee Enterprises, Inc.
1746 Calle Yucca, Suite 200
Thousand Oaks, CA 91360

George Torok Host of Business in Motion Business Speaker Listen to Business in Motion audio PodCasts On iTunes Business in Motion on Facebook Share/Save/Bookmark

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Fear Is Real and it’s Not your Enemy

You are not alone. We all have fears that we don’t care to reveal. Fear is an emotion and hence irrational. Emotions are irrational, illogical and intangible but they are still real.

We humans experience many different emotions. That includes love, hate, anger, greed, guilt, pride, compassion, lust, hope…

All are intangible and impossible to measure on any scale. Yet, our life is directed more by emotion than by any other thing. Our motivation and direction is most often guided by our emotions.

Of all the emotions we feel, the strongest is fear. You might not like to hear that but fear is the most important emotion to our survival. Fear resides in the Amygdala of our brain. That is often referred to as the Lizard brain. Why? Because it is at the top of the spinal cord and even lizards have that minuscule brain. Higher evolved species have that plus more developed brains.

The thoughtful question might be, “Why are most species equipped with the emotion of fear?” Because fear is the prime motivator for survival.

Perhaps you’ve heard a motivational speaker command you to ignore your fears. Why is the speaker telling you to ignore the strongest emotion you have? That’s funny because motivation is about emotion. Is the speaker suggesting that you ignore certain emotions while embracing others? Why? Clearly a motivational speaker doesn’t speak logically.

The speaker might even be so bold as to proclaim that fear isn’t real. They might even spout the acronym that FEAR stands for False Evidence Appearing Real. That might sound cute. The motivational speaker might feel clever. But it’s nonsense.

Perhaps you’ve heard a motivational speaker or therapist command you to ignore your fears. They might have proclaimed that Fear isn’t real or specifically that your fear isn’t real.

That first statement would be a lie and the second would additionally be insulting and insensitive.

Fear is as real as any other emotion. It’s also the most powerful emotion. It’s the most important emotion to our survival.

We don’t need to live our lives in fear. We simply need to accept our fears for the illogical and powerful forces they are. When our fears seem to disrupt our progress then we need to take the time and consider the rational to manage our fears.

Acknowledge, respect and manage your fears.

George Torok Host of Business in Motion Business Speaker Listen to Business in Motion audio PodCasts On iTunes Business in Motion on Facebook Share/Save/Bookmark

Sunday, March 02, 2014

CFMU community radio looking for your support
Okay, I'm not the most interesting man in the world.  I'm probably not even the most interesting man in this room, and I'm the only one here.  Yet one thing's for sure - I work at the most interesting radio station in Hamilton.  We are 93.3 CFMU FM - listener-supported, campus-based community radio.

CFMU broadcasts to the greater Hamilton area.  Our programs are produced and hosted by volunteers from the community - by people like yourself.  We address local issues, promote local and under-represented music, and feature unique voices.  We give voice to those who need it.

Last year, we received our seventh Radio Station of the Year Award, grew our social media presence by 99%, started a blog (, and had a physical presence at many events on campus and across the city.  Our on-site Supercrawl broadcast was the most successful to date, and featured many high-profile guests.  Most importantly, our campus profile has taken a leap forward and volunteer participation has expanded by over 30%. CFMU is more interesting and valuable than ever.

We are asking our fellow Hamiltonians to offer assistance in any way they are able: donations; promotions; sharing our campaign banner; spreading the word; or any other suggestions you may have in helping us reach our goal.

Additionally, we'd like you to consider pledging to this year's drive and supporting our campaign. In order to save paper we are sending our request in digital form.  If you choose to support us in 2014, click on the "Donate" button on this page to pay by PayPal, or email me - Jamie Tennant, Program Director, at

Keep radio interesting - support 93.3 CFMU.

Click here to donate to CFMU

PS: If you've been a guest on Business In Motion or you have listened - then consider contributing to CFMU because it is community radio. Over 150 volunteers keep the station running 24/7.

Any amount is welcome. Please mention Business in Motion when you contribute.

George Torok Host of Business in Motion Business Speaker Listen to Business in Motion audio PodCasts On iTunes Business in Motion on Facebook Share/Save/Bookmark