Miller’s Monday Morning Message

Andrew MillerMiller’s Monday Morning Message
presented by ACM Consulting Inc.

Andrew Miller on operational excellence, strategy, life balance and everything in between

Toronto – September 21, 2015

Last week, I was in Chicago speaking to a group of 40 association executives on the five myths of association excellence. These five myths are causing associations to lose money and show their members out the door. We had a great discussion on what association excellence looks like, and how to change an organization’s dynamic around these five myths.

  1. You can be everything to everybody. No you can’t. You need to understand your strengths and what value you can offer. Then determine who can most benefit from that value.
  2. Your members inherently know the value that you offer. They don’t. You need to help them articulate the value that you offer to help attract new members.
  3. Offering new products and services means you are innovative. There is a difference between being innovative (creating need) and being opportunistic (exploiting opportunities). Associations are mainly opportunistic. We could not come up with one example of an association that is truly innovative (which of course creates a tremendous opportunity for someone to fill that void).
  4. Putting on events means you are building a community. Building a community requires you to provide value consistently and be provocative. It also should feed itself with the community members bringing in new members on their own.
  5. You will thrive by doing what you already do, only better. You may survive if you improve on what you are currently doing, but you won’t thrive. Organizations that thrive challenge their business models and change their mindset.

We had a very lively discussion about how associations need to change their mindset around how to provide value to their members and take more risks. These myths can apply to any organization so don’t dismiss them just because you are not running an association.

Looking for more insights?
Check out my podcast series called Hockey Management, where I use hockey as an analogy for successful business results.
Prefer watching videos? The take a look at my short videos providing operational excellence tips.
Follow me on Twitter @AndrewMillerACM

To request an interview or more information, please contact:

 
Andrew Miller
416-480-1336
© Andrew Miller. All rights reserved. 2015.

Miller’s Monday Morning Message

Andrew MillerMiller’s Monday Morning Message
presented by ACM Consulting Inc.Andrew Miller on operational excellence, strategy, life balance and everything in between

Toronto – July 14, 2014
The newest business opportunity for organizations is to create a community of customers, or business partners, or even employees. Being a part of a community and a support system can have major benefits for all of us. Consider the importance of the neighbourhood you live in, that is a community. Think about the company you work for. That is another community. The gym at which you workout, the products you buy, even the associations you belong to. Those are all different communities.
 
Being a part of a community helps us acquire knowledge and answers faster, helps us challenge our thinking, helps us build stronger relationships, and helps us develop more loyalty.

So what separates successful communities from others? Here are a few ideas:

  • The community members have a common goal (business improvement, good education for kids, neighbourhood safety, and so on).
  • There are people in the community who help facilitate the development of the community.
  • The members of the community have each others best interests in mind.
  • There is a level of trust amongst community members and they share information and ideas openly.
  • The community provides more value collectively than the members of the community would achieve on their own.
  • The community members attract other like-minded people to join the community and add even more value.
A strong community is like a success loop (see figure below) where members are attracted to the community because of its value, and the more valuable members who join the community, the more people WANT to join the community to be a part of it.

What kind of community are you building?

My book, Redefining Operational Excellence, is now available. Click here to order your copy.
 
To request an interview or more information, please contact:
 
Andrew Miller
416-480-1336

Follow me on Twitter @AndrewMillerACM
© Andrew Miller. All rights reserved. 2014.

Miller’s Monday Morning Message

Andrew MillerMiller’s Monday Morning Message
presented by ACM Consulting Inc.

Andrew Miller on operational excellence, strategy, life balance and everything in between

Toronto – September 30, 2013
This weekend I completed the Tough Mudder challenge. A series of military style obstacles set out over a tough, hilly course. This challenge is both physical and mental, as you spend hours climbing up and down ski hills, hurtling yourself over barriers, jumping into ice baths, crawling through mud, and climbing over walls. It was an amazing and unique experience.
 
What was most amazing was the sense of community one had with the other challengers taking part. Since this was not a race. Teamwork and camaraderie were the key focus of the event. People were always pumping each other up, cheering each other on, and helping each other get over the various obstacles. Everyone was there to support everyone else and get them through the challenge. That is what a community is supposed to be.
 
This is unlike a more recent example in my neighbourhood where people are trying to set up an online community to share information. The problem is that some people use it for their own gain, or their own amusement. There is a lot of insulting comments made, some even bordering on inappropriate. People are hesitant to make comments and others avoid the online community altogether.
 
So why does one community work and the other doesn’t?
 
Here’s what makes a successful community:
  • The community members have a common goal (business improvement, good education for kids, neighbourhood safety, completion of a challenge, and so on).
  • There are people in the community who help facilitate the development of the community.
  • The members of the community have each others best interests in mind, not their own individual interests.
  • There is a level of trust amongst community members and they share information and ideas openly.
  • The community provides more value collectively than the members of the community would achieve on their own.
  • The community members attract other like-minded people to join the community and add even more value.
I am now a proud member of the Tough Mudder community, and look forward to next year.
 
If you would like to see pictures from the event, click here.
 
To request an interview or more information, please contact:
 
Andrew Miller
416-480-1336
 
Follow me on Twitter @AndrewMillerACM
© Andrew Miller. All rights reserved. 2013.

The Power of Community

The newest business opportunity for organizations is to create a community of your customers, or business partners, or even your employees. Being a part of a community and a support system can have major benefits for us. Consider the importance of the neighbourhood you live in, that is a community. Think about the company you work for. That is another community. The gym at which you workout, the products you buy, even the associations you belong to. Those are all different communities.

So what separates successful communities from others? Here are a few ideas:

  • The community members have a common goal (business improvement, good education for kids, neighbourhood safety, and so on).
  • There are people in the community who help facilitate the development of the community.
  • The members of the community have each others best interests in mind.
  • There is a level of trust amongst community members and they share information and ideas openly.
  • The community provides more value collectively than the members of the community would achieve on their own.
  • The community members attract other like-minded people to join the community and add even more value.

A strong community is like a success loop (see figure below) where members are attracted to the community because of its value, and the more valuable members who join the community, the more people WANT to join the community to be a part of it.

Creating a successful community

Can you use the characteristics above to build a strong community around your organization?