aLearning Blog

Online Learning for Trade Associations

Just Wait Till Next Year

Posted by Ellen on June 27, 2011

Looking for the latest aLearning post? Sorry… you’ll have to wait a year. Maybe two. There’s a waiting list and you’re now at the bottom of it.

What?!?!? Of course I’m kidding. You’re obviously reading the latest post…

… so here’s another one:

Let’s say you’ve discovered a new organization that’s a great fit for you. You get your credit card ready and click the option that says Become A Member, but when the screen comes up it says, “Sorry. We’re booked up. We now have a waiting list and it will take at least a year before we have room to include you. Please fill out this form to add your name to that list.”

What?!?!? They don’t want your money?!? They don’t want you to join?!? You don’t need them in a year, you need them now! You want those benefits! You NEED those benefits of membership!

You’d never do that to your members, would you? You’d never make them wait to join — you’d never make them wait to become active participants in your learning programs, would you?

Of course you would. You already do! You do it any time you have a waiting list for a program. Anytime you have limited seating for a much-desired educational program means you’re telling your members they aren’t as important as your way of doing things is.

Don’t pretend that’s not what’s going on. You might THINK you’re not guilty of this, but you are.

Let’s say you’ve run out of milk and when you get to the grocery store, their dairy racks aren’t only empty, they’re strung with signs that say, “You’ll be able to get the milk you need in a year. We appreciate your patience.”

Patience my butt!

So what do you do? You go to the next grocery and get your milk there, right?

Of course you do. Anybody would.

Our members are the same way. They want what they want when they want it. They need what they need when they need it.

They’re on THEIR schedule.

Yet our learning offerings are on OUR schedule, not theirs.

Why are you making your members wait? Why are you insisting they follow your schedule, rather than provide training and education on theirs?

Too many options, you say? Posh and potato mashers, I say!

That’s what 24/7/365 online learning is all about. Providing training so your organization’s members can access it on their time. Not yours.

Don’t make them wait. Look at every program you have with a waiting list. Every concurrent educational session at your national conference that’s had standing room only crowds.

Now start figuring out how to offer those online so more members can experience them — soon.

Next year could be too late.

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