What is a legacy mindset, and how can it hold back your association? And how do you meet members’ needs with the data you have on hand?
The Association Podcast was joined by Chief Information and Engagement Office at ASAE, Reggie Henry, CAE, last fall to discuss his thoughts on necessary transformation in the association space. The episode focused on Henry’s ideas about “working out loud” and overcoming legacy mindsets to push innovation.
If you are looking for new ways to anticipate your members’ needs or tackle innovation in a new light, we gathered our favorite insights from this episode.
How to overcome a legacy mindset
If legacy systems were the only problem we had to worry about, we would be in good shape. What we have to worry about is legacy mindsets and legacy thinking, because that is what holds us back quite honestly. I have seen too many times when somebody goes out and spends a fortune on a very forward-thinking system and their legacy mindset puts them in the place of implementing old mindsets into new technology. You know what you get? You get the same [stuff] you had before you started, just a little shinier.Reggie Henry
Ditching old thinking patterns leads to a faster business model
[Associations] got rid of legacy thinking because we were forced to, not because it was a strategy or anything else. But I hope we prove to ourselves when we do that we are more quickly solving member needs, more quickly adopting new technologies, more quickly having to work together as an organization as opposed to departments. All those lessons should have been learned. My biggest fear is that our rush to get back to normal takes us back to normal thinking. Reggie Henry
Anticipating member needs through unconventional data
The other thing we do is pay attention to the data. Your members tell you what they need every day. Every step they take on your website tells you something about what they need. Every transaction that doesn’t get fulfilled or they abandoned the cart, it’s telling you something. Our mindset has always been so transaction-based in terms of the data we’re looking at, but every interaction is important.Reggie Henry
Now is the time to be innovative
The long and short of it is, there is no better time to be innovative than right now. We’ve got a society that has been having to adjust to different technologies and different thinking. We’ve got organizations that have had to adjust to providing services in a different manner. The bar is low in terms of people not being willing to try things… If you can’t do anything else at all in your organization, you’ve got to convince somebody to be the thought-leader inside of an organization.Reggie Henry
Learn more from Reggie Henry
Do you want to learn more from Reggie Henry and other top association leaders? Check out the award-winning podcast’s variety of episodes that focus on fresh ideas for associations through the use of strategy, design, analytics, and technology.