what do you seek in a professional org?

I renewed my membership with Co-op America this morning. Mostly to not lose my momentum with them. Secondarily because they do good work and have the best of intentions and I want to see them continue to grow; I originally joined them when they were still a good bit smaller and were just learning to vet memberships over the internet. I did not renew one year because I blew a hefty chunk of change on holiday advertising that didn’t net me any traffic or sales. When you’re a small-fry you have to write off some things, and in that instance I just shrugged and called the advertising several years of membership. And then chalked it up to experience.

But they have some flakey tendencies that continue to dog them in the customer service area, and I brought these up with the membership services person who sent me a reminder email to renew. She was pretty gracious about it.

Having worked in non-profit myself, I know that a lot of things go by the seat of one’s pants. But ultimately your dues-paying members are your bosses, en masse. Ya gotta listen to them.

It looks like they finally listened to member complaints about the list-serv. That’s a start.

Good org, but still a diamond in the rough. And they’re still learning what works and what does not. And I say that in the kindest way.

Check ’em out if you’re looking for a natural-flavored org to join that emphasizes member networking, social responsibility, and other good stuff.

Trade orgs are a hard row to hoe when you’re a small business which is subject market fluctuations, the vagaries of consumer spending habits, and the like. But I continue to maintain a few memberships hoping that over the long haul my dollars are supporting something that is ultimately supportive of everyone else following their bliss. Not just me.

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