Thoughts on how we engage people via this site

Megan and I met this morning and talked about the research dimension of this project. I've just updated the research page so you can see where we got to.

We also discussed the question of how to engage other key people in membership organisations in our discussions and thinking. I'm sure we'll have a chance to discuss more when we meet face-to-face in a couple of weeks' time, but for now I thought I'd just share our ideas as food for thought.

We know that in order to encourage people to participate there has to be a clear 'ask' and clarity about the terms of engagement. How about creating a series of boxes (or something) on the front page with the key questions we're interested in. So for example:

  • Tell us more: what are your own experiences of dealing with membership issues today? How is your organisation engaging with its members and are there any particular initiatives that you think are particularly exciting?
  • What do you want to know? As this is a research and practice project we want to generate knowledge, ideas and tools that are useful to all membership organisations thinking about the future. How can we ensure that what we're doing will help you?
  • Social media: in particular we are interested in the interactions between new social media and membership organisations. What do you see as the opportunities and threats? How is your organisation making use of social media and new channels for engagement?
  • Tell us what you think: what's your view of the major challenges and opportunities for membership organisations in the 21stC?
I'm sure there are other questions but it seems to me that these are accessible 'ways in' for partners from membership organisations to contribute to both the research and to the overall shape and purpose of the project... what do others think?

re: good questions

yes - the questions look spot on! Many thanks. We could do some tick boxes - additional conversations would be better. However, I'm not sure we'll get that started cold online. We need some starter conversations, and champions. Should we consider getting the conversation started on at the conference April 22? We talked about a card game session, but the interaction slot is 35 minutes - which would be tight. Something around these questions might be better. We could then report back on the site, together with some simple ways to encourage more input and dicussion.

Questions about questions

Hi David

Can you explain what you mean by tick boxes?

22 April would be good to get the conversation started - we promised some thoughts on implications of change, but we could flip it round and get them to think about change first and then I can maybe go someway towards the 'now what?' part of the equation.


re: questions about questions

Hi Megan - on tick boxes - I thought Sophia/you might be suggesting a poll or similar for starters: probably misinterpreted ... sorry. Nothing wrong with that anyway ... I was just wondering how to get conversation going from the questions. I think you have answered on the event.


Aaah! I think what we were discussing was how to make this website more accessible for new people visiting it. It's quite hard to navigate for those not used to this kind of site, and the ask isn't immediately clear. So I think Sophia's 'boxes' were formatting boxes - emphasising how people can contribute immediately and obviously!

However, you make a very good point that the questions on their own may not be enough to start the discussions, and that online alone is not enough. Something for us to ponder at our f2f meeting next week?

re: boxes

Yes, let's discuss next week. Agreed we need a clearer ask and offer on the site ... and that should reflect/inform the way the project develops. One option is we could help develop a network/community of practice for people within and outside organisations interested in the issues and practice we are discussing here. This network would operate partly online, and partly through meetups, innovation camps, barcamps etc. The rationale is that change will come through committed people, and what they need is the support, learning, tools etc.

Then our task is how to recruit and support that network - our "membership". They assist with research, develop and use products and services etc. Just floating ideas. There are other routes, of course.

Nice. I'm excited about

Nice. I'm excited about discussing further...

Good questions

Hi Sophia

I think they are really clear questions. I particularly like the second question - I'm keen to reflect the needs of our members in designing this work!


good questions

I agree with Megan. It's good to see a clear direction emerging. And the 2nd question is of vital importance! I would like to learn more about the motivations behind people joining organisations, and end up with some practical solutions and suggestions that will improve my skills in recruitment.