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Daily Buzz: When It’s Okay to Break the Rules

How unintentional negative interactions with your staff can prove a major turnoff

Why is it that some organizations treat their members poorly?

“My guess is that it is unintentional,” says Colleen Dilenschneider on Know Your Own Bone, which focuses on the needs of cultural organizations like museums. She says this happens when “membership police”—staff or volunteers who interact with members or the public at large—unwittingly condescend, embarrass, or hew too closely to the rules.

Research shows that the top-three dissatisfiers among high-level members paying over $250 each year are (1) solicitation telephone calls, (2) not being treated as special onsite, and (3) proving identity at the entrance,” Dilenschneider says. “Not being treated as special and having to show identification being perceived as a negative experience underscore a general failing by the membership police to make members feel valued.”

While membership rules are important, Dilenschneider recommends easing up some. “Personalized interactions matter, and while membership ‘rules’ exist for good reason, there may be times when it is best for the organization that they are broken,” she says.

Please select this link to read the original article from Associations Now.

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