Success by Association - May/June 2017 - 20

memberbenefits

You'll Lobby for Me Whether or Not I Join!
Bob Harris, CAE

N

on-members benefit from lobbying-maybe
you call them "freeloaders." I call it a
"legislative welfare" program. We respond
to their objections with rationales like: "your
membership allows access to influence the process,"
or, "your participation increases our clout."
The fact is, successful lobbying benefits everyone, not
only dues-paying members.

Solving the Dilemma
The issue is how to make lobbying a member benefit;
an activity respected by prospects and members alike.
Do this by transforming lobbying efforts and results
into tangibles. A tangible benefit is one you can
publish, sell, share, distribute, and control. It positions
the organization as a leader by managing and
controlling the information.
Try these ideas to transform lobbying into tangible benefits:
Compliance Manual - When a law is enacted, create a
compliance manual that describes how the law came about,
the exact wording, definitions, how to comply, and where to go
for help. Every law has a history and there is plenty of content
to create a manual.
End of Session Report - A summary of the legislative
session is valued by members and retained for reference. It
summarizes the organization's platform, efforts and results.
Legislative Directory - Create a legislative directory with
contact information and committees of interest. Or adapt an
existing directory by imprinting the cover or inserting several
center pages describing the organization's issues or key bills.
A legislative directory is an excellent member benefit and
sellable to non-members.
Legislative Platform - The organization or lobbyist
determines a legislative agenda for the upcoming session.
Prepare the legislative platform in a brochure to inform
members of issues and goals.
Legislative Audit Checklist - Most businesses comply with
regulations enforced by multiple agencies. For example, a
restaurant complies with licensing, smoking, safety, taxation,
and labor laws, at a minimum. Describe all the regulations
20

success || may/june 2017

monitored and influenced by the association or chamber
to create a legislative audit checklist. Distribute it to
members annually as a checklist of the many laws requiring
compliance. The checklist format serves as a practical guide
to conformance.
Regulatory Audit Service - Expand the value of the
legislative audit checklist by employing staff to visit with
members who want help in understanding and complying
with the laws influenced by the association. One great value
of the audit service is that the association has an engaging
relationship with members wanting help. A second advantage
is the collection of data about compliance problems that will
result in better lobbying.
To protect your lobbying program as a member benefit,
consider ways to transform information into tangibles. Let
non-members access the information at reasonable fees. z

Bob Harris, CAE has 30+ years
experience with associations, chambers
and other nonprofits. His interactive
seminars utilize case studies, trends and
headlines for board orientation, training,
strategic planning, staff training and
consulting. He can be reached at
bob@RCHCAE.com or 850.570.6000.



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Success by Association - May/June 2017

How To Help Your Managers (or You) Resolve Conflict in the Workplace
Core4 Principles to Demonstrate Member Value
Annual Meeting Preview
What To Do in Winston-Salem
Annual Meeting Registration Form
You’ll Lobby for Me Whether or Not I Join!
What Are You Bringing to the Table?
President’s Message
Event Calendar
Buyers’ Guide
Member Updates
Advertiser Index
Young Leader Profile
Advertiser Showcase
Executive Director’s Message
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - Intro
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - cover1
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - cover2
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - 3
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - President’s Message
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - Event Calendar
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - 6
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - How To Help Your Managers (or You) Resolve Conflict in the Workplace
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - Core4 Principles to Demonstrate Member Value
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - 9
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - 10
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - 11
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - 12
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - 13
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - 14
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - 15
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - Annual Meeting Preview
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - 17
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - What To Do in Winston-Salem
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - Annual Meeting Registration Form
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - You’ll Lobby for Me Whether or Not I Join!
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - Buyers’ Guide
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - Member Updates
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - 23
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - What Are You Bringing to the Table?
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - Advertiser Index
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - Young Leader Profile
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - 27
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - Advertiser Showcase
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - 29
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - Executive Director’s Message
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - cover3
Success by Association - May/June 2017 - cover4
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