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ASSOCIATION TRANSFORMATION

The Benefits of Going Global

Let’ talk about internationalism - about being global.

We're in a more global world than ever before - the world is smaller than it has ever been. However, not everyone may see internationalisation as a valuable path or a top priority, with some Associations preferring to work in splendid isolation believing that “an international outlook is not for us”.

This of course is a perfectly acceptable viewpoint, providing it is an informed decision having considered, understood and recognised the value of global cooperation.

It’s a fact that in this modern age even the most “home market” focused groups are still being impacted by a global supply chain, a global technology market and an economic market that's impacted by global events.

So, let's talk about the steps to evaluate and to potentially dabble in that international market. This doesn't have to be world domination right off the bat, there can be small steps into a global conversation where you can look to expand and to learn which will enable you to offer your members more value because of the partnerships and the collaborations in which you're engaging.

Many of the organizations that we work with, be they in the scientific or medical arenas or any other area for that matter will have international counterparts, so that first step to collaborate with your counterparts overseas is a massive, quick win.

What's the next step beyond the simple collaboration?

Think about revenue diversity, about access to new markets, greater entry point into the global markets through technology. If we are able to be more inclusive and expansive and have a broader diversity of thought, not just representation and faces on the board and participants on your panel, but beyond just your own market, then that diversity can trickle through not just your membership, but your leadership and your perspective. Think how much better an organization you could be at fulfilling your mission when you're able to see it from different directions, different perspectives, different markets, and even different time zones!

A global model will allow you access and exposure to donors, to social media awareness, to supporters of your cause - and that's not tied to a time zone or even to those who are willing to join. Increasing the awareness of your organization, your cause, your impact, your mission can have amazing impact not only on your reputation and your credibility, but also in those fundraising terms, with people adding their names to your petition and people liking and sharing your social media.

There are of course challenges – financial, time-zones, language barriers, cultural differences, spreading yourself too thin as an organization, but these are all things to consider, not reasons to say no, or to consider in part of that informed conversation.

Internationalism - how is it not part of your future outlook?

You're not going to get to that future by doing what you've always done and by engaging who you've always engaged.

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