The arrival of Thanksgiving has us reflecting on the many reasons to be thankful for our involvement in association work.

We’re grateful for insight into the professions represented by the associations we work with. We’ve gained great appreciation for the skill and expertise required for our members to perform the work they do. We have grown intimately familiar with inner workings of worlds we’ll never work within ourselves, and are proud to represent people who keep our children safe, make our world beautiful, contribute to the health of our pets, make cancer patients stronger for the fight ahead, speak for the disenfranchised, move us from one place to the next and much more.

Online security at the best price - FREE!

by Shannon Davenport and Emily Luddy

As association managers you wear a lot of different hats. Staying informed about the latest technology and its implications for your association is just par for the course, so let’s dive right into an important development coming out of the web community: free SSL certificates.

SSL, or Secure Sockets Layer, is an encryption tool that provides secure communication over a computer network. The information you send over the internet such as usernames, passwords, Social Security numbers and credit card numbers, travels across the world’s computer networks until it reaches its destination. The security certificate locks up this private data, so it arrives at the destination safe and sound.

You may know more than you think about SSL certificates. Have you ever noticed web addresses that begin with “https://” and have a little padlock icon in the address bar? That means the site has a security certificate. It's a visual cue that says, “Hey, you can trust us!”

What are the implications of that for you and your members? Well, does your organization ask people to sign up for a weekly newsletter? Do you offer online registration for events? Do you collect dues payments?

Then you need a security certificate.

Conference season: Making the inevitable bearable

There’s plenty of advice out there on how to eliminate stress from our lives – and often that advice ends up causing us more stress.

That’s because it presumes we can eliminate stress, if we just do all the right things: eat better, sleep more, exercise regularly, meditate, change our attitude, plan ahead, get organized … ad infinitum. When the stress remains, it must be because we failed to do those things.

As your inner teenager from the 1990s might say, “Get real!”

“Real” means accepting that stress – especially the pre-conference kind – is inevitable. We can’t eliminate it, but we can learn to manage it.

Associations make New York state, our country and our world a better place – in a big way.

The Association Development Group and its creative division, Studio136 created this short video to tell the association story. It’s filled with facts about the history of associations, the contributions they’ve made to the world and the role they play in the economy.

Finding all those facts was challenging – because they aren’t common knowledge. This made us more determined than ever to change that.

We hope you’ll share this video and spread the word about the value of associations and the work association managers do.