Let me get this out-of-the-way right at the beginning. I am a huge PRSA supporter. I’ve been a PRSSA and PRSA member for roughly 15 years now. This could be construed as negative but I want to make sure that everyone understands it is meant only as a valid question in the hopes of continuing to consistently improve the offerings provided to the organization’s membership.
When I began as a recent graduate, I recall attending monthly meetings featuring some of the best and brightest in the Twin Cities. I was honestly in awe of what many of these professionals had accomplished as I was starting my career. Over the next decade, I was able to build relationships and connections that helped me along as I learned how to stand on my own. PRSA played a valuable role in enhancing my career.
However, in today’s environment when so many senior communications professionals are only a Tweet or webinar away, I”m wondering if PRSA needs to alter its traditional approach to delivering value to its membership. Access that was stunning to me years ago is now commonplace, and expected. As professionals continue to shell out a few hundred dollars each year to be a member, what can the organization do that really delivers a significant benefit to those of you out there that support it? What methods of programming are you interested in? Should there be a greater emphasis on webinars or perhaps more focus on a regional set of programming versus strictly local? Or does the price point need to change to more frequent but targeted lower cost events?
As more and more professionals are struggling with justifying the cost of professional development to their employers (or paying it on their own during a tough economy) what’s the mix you’d like to see?
3 thoughts on “PRSA Progression”
Dave, this is something I’ve been thinking about as well. How can I help make PRSA better?
One area is showing how and why members should get involved. Show value of joining a committee and volunteering. Show value of the network you can build by doing such.
Also, like you mentioned, we need to start providing events that are of value. Not everything has to be focused on digital and not everything has to be traditional. As you build, more members will sign up, allowing for cheaper events.
It’s our duty as PR pros to help grow our professional organization.
You make a really good point Kasey in terms of getting involved. When a member really gets involved is when they can gain the most from the organization. Not everyone will do so but, like anything else, you get what you give.