Guest Author: Tim Ebner, Associations Now
Getting your members on board with a bold strategic initiative that they may not initially welcome isn’t easy. To sweeten the deal, the CEO of the National Confectioners Association conducted a listening tour to hear members’ concerns and share data that helped win them over.
Sometimes the most powerful way to persuade is to stop talking and just listen.
That approach has been a big success for the National Confectioners Association, which has been working to convince candy companies to sign on to a strategic initiative that NCA understood would not be an immediate hit among members: a nutritional and dietary commitment that gives consumers more product information and choice.
“It’s very challenging and very difficult to bring an entire industry together under a very bold change agenda,” says NCA President and CEO John Downs.
“You have to go and meet members where they are. Really, the job of any association is at the intersection of business, policy, politics, and diplomacy.”