About the Company
We work with professional associations and other organizations and businesses on strategic questions, including strategic planning, strategy development, business model assessment, marketing strategy, conference assessment, and customized market research. Founder Meredith Low is a highly experienced management consultant, focused on helping organizations and companies understand how, when, and where to grow in the context of fast-changing environments.

Strategy is not management

Association strategy is not management, but it is so often muddled. Here’s the difference: strategy is the set of choices you make (and live by) to be successful. It’s doing this, not that. Going down this path, but not that one. Designing for these activities, not those. Management is about running the association. Which of course …

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Dave Meslin’s Engagement Framework

Recently, I wrote an article for CSAE Trillium’s Forum e-Magazine. Here’s the intro to give you a start, and the link to read more.  Smart associations today know that they aren’t entitled to engagement from members – or from anyone else. But there aren’t that many robust frameworks on how to build engagement. Right now, …

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Robust decision-making

Here’s the thing about decision-making. It’s not always about making a decision. Except when it is. Knowing when not to make a particular decision is not about doing nothing. Sometimes it’s saying, you know what, we’ll plant a few seeds and see what happens. Or experiment a bit. Or set a time to make the …

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A board is not a focus group!

“How many of your members are in management or academic roles?” I asked. “Fifteen percent.” Looking around the board table, I then asked, “How many of you are in management or academic roles?” Almost every hand went up. Boards are the stewards of the organization, and most, if not all, members of an association board are …

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Change agents, assemble! – reprise

In organizational change, we need to cultivate friends. If you were at the delightful CSAE Trillium Summer Summit last week, you’ll remember the keynoter Sunjay Nath’s talk about what he calls the 10-80-10 rule. He made the point that focusing on the least-engaged, most-resistant segment (the bottom 10%) results in everyone else feeling left out, and drains your energy. And …

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How can you drive commitment?

One thing I suggest to clients is that communication leads to commitment. What we tell others we’re going to do, we’re more likely to do. I also talk about setting aside time to do the important things – drop them into a calendar. For instance, if you have a strategic and tactical plan, your commitment to it …

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The strategically skilled association – CSAE guest post

This week I wrote a blog post for the Canadian Society of Association Executives (CSAE), on the idea of a strategically skilled association. Strategy is more important than ever. Associations – and, more importantly, their members – face a changing environment, including significant threats to traditional association business models. Yet, associations are often disenchanted and disappointed …

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New! Association tactical planning white paper

This white paper, “Turning Strategy into Action: Tactical Planning for Associations“, is for association leaders who want to make sure their strategies become reality. It outlines a process for: Connecting high-level strategies to real-world operations through tactics. Bringing tactics together into a coherent, feasible—but still inspiring—plan. Using the plan to manage expectations—and make space for opportunities. Download …

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Tactical planning – 5 ways to make it successful

Most of us can make the argument for the importance of strategy. Most of us can also make the case that strategy has to be turned into feasible tactics to actually get anything accomplished. But tactical planning? We may go a bit blank when we think about how to do that. What’s the process for turning strategies …

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Strategic measurement – Pick your metrics wisely

I’ve talked before about the importance of setting metrics at the strategic level and using them to assess the success of your strategy. But how do you pick those metrics for strategic measurement? What are you aiming for, with different strategies? STRATEGIC MEASUREMENT SHOULD ANSWER THE QUESTION: SO WHAT? If you’ve set strategies, you need to …

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