Association Q&A: Government Affairs

How do you sell advocacy as a valuable association member benefit?

Advocacy can be one of your most valuable association benefits.  (Advocacy is also referred to as lobbying, governmental affairs, or public policy at times.) A great example of strong association advocacy can be found in the malpractice compensation limits in various states.  Regardless of whether you agree with them, the limits did not magically appear. They were the […]

How should our association establish a government affairs program?

As a first step in establishing a government affairs program, your association has to first determine the need for the program, make a formal commitment and fund the public policy program. For a program to be successful there must be buy-in by the association president, executive committee, the association board and senior staff. Once this […]

Does every association need a government affairs program?

To say that every association needs a government affairs program would be an exaggeration. However, a case can be made that many associations that do not have a government affairs program should. Here are three reasons: 1) Government affairs representation is one of the primary reasons that members join associations. It is also one of […]

What is the range of activity in an association government affair program?

Association government affairs programs vary in their comprehensiveness. The list below represents potential levels of commitment to the government affairs program that an association should consider. – Informational – Marketing and Pubic Relations/Education – Reactive Lobbying – Proactive Lobbying – Grassroots Development – Legislative Relations – Media and Member Relations Your association’s leadership, membership and […]

Should we offer non-members periodic information from the association?

Every association offers member communications such as a newsletter, magazine or email-based publication. But should your association also be producing a publication for people who are not members of your association? The answer for your association is probably yes, for three reasons: 1) Almost every association has an external audience that is important. This may […]