An Executive Director's point of view


October 17, 2017: Employment traps

Category: Employment
Posted by: David M Patt
Here's a great list of employment issues.

October 10, 2017: Tattoos

Category: Culture
Posted by: David M Patt
A lively discussion about tattoos in the workplace is happening on ASAE Collaborate right now.

Some participants have invoked association dress codes that either prohibit tattoos or limit their visibility to what are considered "appropriate." A few worry about how tattooed staff will affect the image of the organization.

Others, whether or not displaying such markings, feel acquisition of a tattoo is a matter of personal choice. Once exec commented, "Sheesh. It's 2017, people."

Tattoos are no longer tiny imprints hidden on someone's inner thigh. Many people sport large, multi-colored artwork in very visible places. And body piercings, which are sometimes borne by the same people who opt for tattoos, are hugely popular and show themselves on many exposed body parts.

The tattoo discussion reminds me of the issue decades ago when employers looked askance at younger people's hair styles and clothes. They insisted everybody adhere to an image that had been created years before (by their parents' generation).

People who don't approve tattoos or don't like them - chill out. Don't demand that everybody look the way you want them to look. The world has changed and a lot of people show off tattoos all the time. It's no big deal.

So, hire the best staff you can find. And don't be so concerned about how they decorate themselves.

Category: Meetings
Posted by: David M Patt
Many attendees of our educational conferences, annual meetings, trade shows, and other events are merely there to network.

They aren't interested in learning, buying, or engaging in association activities.

They just want to interact with colleagues and see what's going on in the industry or profession.

So, let's accommodate them.

We can address their needs in our marketing materials, provide places for them to mingle with others, let them into the expo, and add a question about networking on event evaluation forms.

If our associations become known as "go-to" places for everybody, more people will register for events, more people will join, and more people will renew.

It's just a smart thing to do.

September 26, 2017: A message from the grave

Category: Stuff, other
Posted by: David M Patt
My mother left a message after her death. It was read aloud at her funeral and copies were placed on each seat.

Her words seem very fitting right now.
Category: Employment
Posted by: David M Patt
It's this.

September 12, 2017: Don't judge a book by its cover

Category: Stuff, other
Posted by: David M Patt
You will have made a mistake.

September 05, 2017: Leave a message

Category: Communications
Posted by: David M Patt
If somebody you call does not answer, don't just hang up.

Leave a voicemail message.

Don't assume they'll check their missed calls, recognize your phone number, and call you back.

1. Many people don't bother checking missed calls because most are from telemarketers, and they have no desire to talk to those folks.

2. The person may not recognize your number (even if you think they should).

3. And, if they do call you back and you then ask for information about something, they may have to research your query and call you again. You will have wasted their time.

So, always leave a message and tell why you called.
Category: Employment
Posted by: David M Patt
I've never asked that question of a job applicant but lots of interviewers will.

Here's how to handle that.

August 22, 2017: No eclipse

Category: Stuff, other
Posted by: David M Patt
I suppose it's nice that people paid a lot of attention to the solar eclipse instead of fretting about world events.

But the eclipse was no big deal to me.

At its peak, I was driving in Chicago. It was overcast, like before a big storm. Still, there were shadows everywhere, as if there was sunlight, but just not enough of it. If I hadn't known about the eclipse, I wouldn't have even noticed that oddity.

I don't think there's anything spiritual, uplifting, or even amazing about a solar eclipse. It's just a cosmic event that happens once it a great while.

But it was a welcome distraction for a lot of people.

August 14, 2017: Email etiquette

Category: Communications
Posted by: David M Patt
Check this out.
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