KSAE Magazine - 2019, Volume 3, Issue 2

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Unique History: Lawrence Combines Art, Culture and Historic Spaces for Memorable Events By Cecilia Harris, writer, KSAE Magazine

10 HUMAN RESOURCES Seven Ways to Reduce Bias in the Hiring Process By Kristina Dietrick, president, HR Partners

12 STRATEGY Sowing Roots: Grassroots Campaigning for Nonprofits By Liz Stevens, writer, KSAE Magazine


22 28 BOARD GOVERNANCE Reverse Engineering Success By Bob Harris, CAE, nonprofitcenter.com

32 TECHNOLOGY Expanding Face-to-Face Events with Video Streaming By Lara Copeland, copy editor, KSAE Magazine

36 MEMBER SPOTLIGHT: KANSAS BANKERS ASSOCIATION A Bankable Future: KBA Continues to Thrive By Brittany Willes, managing editor, KSAE Magazine



Low-Cost Ways to Market Conferences Online By Geoff Beers, reprinted with permission from The Balance

Highlights from the 2019 Kansas Legislative Session By Shahira Stafford, owner, Stafford Public Affairs, LLC

22 FOCUS Strong Branding is the Key to Loyal Membership By Andrea Engstrom, president, Bajillion Agency

24 ASSOCIATION 2019 Association Compensation and Benefits Survey

DEPARTMENTS 4 20 30 42

Letter from the Director Association News Industry News Calendar / Ad Index

Cover and far left photos courtesy of Chris Neal/Shooter Imaging


KSAE Magazine • Summer 2019 |




Christy Classi, CAE Executive Director KSAE

ear Colleagues,

Kansas Society of Association Executives (KSAE) PO Box 4790 Topeka, KS 66604 785.234.0155 • www.ksaenet.org KSAE Board of Directors President Eric Stafford, Kansas Chamber

Those who work for associations know that most of their family and friends have absolutely no idea what they do. Despite repeated attempts to explain membership marketing or government relations or education and other programs, those who work in the association profession are typically met with a blank stare.

President-Elect Ron Seeber, Kansas Grain & Feed Association/Kansas Agribusiness Retailers Association

Try explaining that you work for the Kansas Society of Association Executives. As one of my peers explained it, “She is the executive director of a bunch of other executive directors.” That explains it all.

Immediate Past President Brandy Johnson, CAE Brandy Johnson Consulting

Recently I have found myself having to try and explain this profession in general and KSAE specifically more and more. It’s easy to say that an association seeks to further a profession, the interests of individuals engaged in that profession and the public interest, but what does that mean? Associations are about people. They are about making people’s lives easier, better and more productive. They are about coming together to learn, grow, share and advance. Whether you are an optometrist or you study freshwater organisms, there is an association for you that is about coming together with the people who do what you do in order to make things better. The power of KSAE is that it brings together every association that is working to make his or her little corner of the world better, and, in doing so, it creates a ripple effect. Through its members, KSAE reaches almost every sector of the economy. What KSAE does has an impact on bankers and farmers, realtors, nurses, doctors, businesses, scientists and teachers – the list goes on and on. What do I do? I lead an organization full of amazing people whose expertise and hard work collectively make others’ lives better. And I love what I do. Sincerely,

Christy Classi, CAE

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Secretary-Treasurer Sean Miller, Capitol Strategies

Chad Austin, Kansas Hospital Association Niki Sadler, Kansas Dental Association Kari Presley, Kearney and Associates Amy Dubach, Kansas Society of CPAs Leslie Kaufman, Kansas Electric Cooperatives, Inc. Sara Neiswanger, National Glass Association Carrie Riordan, Riordan & Associates

Published by:

Peterson Publications, Inc. 2150 SW Westport Dr., Suite 101 Topeka, KS 66614 Phone 785.271.5801 www.petersonpublications.com Editor in Chief Jeff Peterson

Advertising/Sales Vicki Peterson

Managing Editor Brittany Willes

Copy Editor Lara Copeland

Art Director Becky Arensdorf

Circulation Manager Brenda Schell

Graphic Designer Kelly Adams



Ask about our incentive program meetings@eXploreLawrence.com UNMISTAKABLYLAWRENCE.COM/MEET Lawrence, Kansas was named the #7 "Coolest Town in America: 2018" by The Matador Network




By Cecilia Harris, writer, KSAE Magazine

amed seventh on a list of “The 25 Coolest Towns in America” by the Matador Network, a digital media company focusing on travel, Lawrence takes pride in being a diverse city that defines itself as being open, energetic and welcoming.

Numerous opportunities to experience the local culture and enjoy after-hours environments combine with multiple venues to make Lawrence an “unmistakable” destination for meetings, conferences and conventions, said Andrea Johnson, director of marketing and communications at eXplore Lawrence. “Besides meeting needs with event spaces, we have a lot of off-site activities and places to experience,” Johnson said. “Massachusetts Street was named the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism’s most visited attraction in 2018.” Often referred to as Mass Street, the main street through the central business district downtown features varied dining options, live music, unique shopping and a vibrant nightlife. “The number one reason people like Lawrence is our arts and culture,” she said. “The Warehouse Arts District is a

historic warehouse area that was totally industrial and now has been converted into studios for artists and galleries and trendy restaurants.” Meeting space options range from hotels and convention centers to unique environments and historic buildings; this sampling shows the diversity Lawrence offers to planners:

DoubleTree by Hilton With 192 guest rooms and more than 18,000 sq. ft. of meeting facilities, the DoubleTree by Hilton includes a ballroom that seats 650 for a banquet and a second ballroom that holds 350 in a classroom setting. The ballrooms can be divided into eight smaller rooms that can host 50 to 225, depending on the event. Two board rooms and a hospitality room accommodate smaller meetings.

Photos courtesy of eXplore Lawrence and DoubleTree by Hilton.

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“This is a full-service hotel and convention center that was completely renovated in 2017,” Johnson said. “It is the largest conference space in town where the hotel and the conference center are under one roof.” Christina Phelps, regional vice president of sales, said the close proximity of the hotel to Interstate 70 and the University of Kansas is an added bonus. The Olivia Collection The Oread Hotel on the KU campus, the historic Eldridge Hotel and the Eldridge Extended, both located downtown, comprise this group that offers what Johnson called “our most unique” hotel and conference spaces. “Of course, the Eldridge has an interesting history, and its location is smack dab in the middle of downtown,” she said. “The Oread has the best view in town from its unique rooftop patio space.” A hotel has stood on the Eldridge grounds since 1855. In fact, two hotels were burned down before and during the Civil War. According to General Manager Nancy Longhurst, today’s Eldridge Hotel was built in 1924, and the two restaurants and the lobby have been renovated in the last year. The hotel includes three meeting rooms, and the Crystal Ballroom that holds up to 120 people for a banquet. The Eldridge Extended, located just one block south of the hotel, has eight luxury extended-stay suites, two stateof-the-art banquet rooms that can seat 50 and 80 people respectively and a small conference room for board meetings, added Longhurst. www.ksaenet.org

Numerous opportunities to experience the local culture and enjoy after-hours environments combine with multiple venues to make Lawrence an “unmistakable” destination. Perched atop Mount Oread, the tallest point in Lawrence, The Oread provides spectacular views of the Kaw River Valley and of the KU campus from The Nest on Ninth, its rooftop terrace where food and beverages are available. The hotel offers nine rooms to accommodate groups between 20 and 240 people for a banquet, and the Fifth Floor Terrace can hold 450 for a reception. Springhill Suites by Marriott The atrium at the Springhill Suites by Marriott in Downtown Lawrence offers a unique and relaxing environment perfect for a reception for up to 75 guests. The ballroom accommodates 140 in a classroom setting, and another meeting room holds 25 people. “It sits right on the banks of the Kansas River, so you can see the river flowing and you can spot eagles,” explained Johnson of the bald eagles that roost in a nearby cottonwood tree and soar over the river, which can be seen from every suite. Cider Gallery Once a cider distillery, this historical building in the continued on page 8 KSAE Magazine • Summer 2019 |


ON LOCATION LAWRENCE continued from page 7

Warehouse Arts District of East Lawrence features exposed brick walls, original wood beams and bountiful windows. Cider Gallery also has a nice surprise for guests: It’s an art gallery that serves as event space. “They always have art on the walls; it’s a gallery featuring local artists, and the artwork changes every month,” Johnson said. “It’s a really neat space, and it’s flexible, especially for receptions and banquets.” An additional bonus to the 5,000-sq.-ft. facility is a garden patio with a stage. Lawrence Country Club Featuring stunning views in a historical setting, the 1914 Lawrence Country Club offers endless menu options with spaces that range from small, private rooms for 40 guests to the full dining room which can seat 240 people with access to a private bar and the expansive Fairway Deck. Jason Mayes, food and beverage director, noted that club membership is not required to host an event at the facility and the upper dining room was remodeled in 2016.

A great plan for meetings Start the conversation 913. 907. 2950 . kcsales@greatwolf.com 10401 Cabela Drive • Kansas City, KS 66111 greatwolf.com/meetings

The DeBruce Center, located on the University of Kansas campus, showcases the history of basketball through exhibits. Photo courtesy of Chris Neal/Shooter Imaging.

The Burge Union Located in the heart of the new Central District on the University of Kansas campus, The Burge Union offers a versatile 10,600-sq.-ft. forum capable of holding over 1,000 guests at a reception. “The Burge Union is brand new and has a great ballroom space that can be broken up,” Johnson said. “It’s a stateof-the-art facility.” Divided into as many as four spaces, the forum can accommodate groups of 72 to 522 people in classroom settings. The DeBruce Center Built to house Dr. James Naismith’s “Original Rules of Basketball,” The DeBruce Center is located adjacent to Allen Fieldhouse on the University of Kansas campus and showcases the history of basketball through exhibits. “This is a newer facility that can hold really cool receptions or kickoff conferences,” Johnson said. A reception for 600 people is possible by renting the entire Center that features an open floor plan. If a smaller space is desired, The DeBruce Mezzanine seats 56 for a luncheon. F

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By Kristina Dietrick, president, HR Partners

ubconscious bias can have a critical effect on judgment and may cause managers to make decisions that are in favor of a person or group and in detriment to another. In the workplace, unconscious biases can cause diversity, recruiting, promotion and retention efforts to stall. If biases are disregarded, they can greatly affect a company’s culture.

Iris Bohnet, director of the Women and Public Policy Program at the Harvard Kennedy School and author of What Works: Gender Equality by Design, states that, “Seeing is believing, and if we don’t see male kindergarten teachers and female engineers, we don’t naturally associate men and women with those jobs.” Bohnet has identified seven different ways managers can reduce bias in their practices and procedures. Seek to understand hiring prejudices Managers should understand what hiring prejudice is and what they can do to combat it. Look for ways to provide education and training to employees about this topic. Awareness is the first step to uncovering unconscious biases because it gives employees the opportunity to gain self-awareness which allows them to identify their own biases. Rework job descriptions When creating job descriptions, managers should stray away from using word choices that have a strong impact on a certain applicant pool. Researchers have found that when using more masculine language such as “competitive” or “determined,” it oftentimes results in women believing that they are not suitable for that role.

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On the other hand, word choices such as “collaborative” and “cooperative” tend to attract more women. Using words that are gender neutral will counteract this effect, or managers can go back and forth between gender specific descriptors to ensure that they are appealing to multiple applicant pools. Go blind for resume reviews It is important to level the playing field by ensuring that managers are focused on the candidate’s qualifications and talents and avoid surfacing demographic characteristics. Software programs allow managers to blind the resume review process. Overall, this will improve the chances of selecting the best candidate for the position. Give a work sample test Work sample tests are created to imitate the task an employee would perform on the job. Evaluating work sample tests from multiple candidates allows managers to identify how Candidate A compares to Candidate B. Administering skills tests forces managers to critique the candidate’s work instead of subconsciously judging their appearance, gender, age or personality. www.ksaenet.org

Standardize interviews Unstructured interviews, which lack defined questions and organically unfold throughout the conversation, are typically unreliable for predicting job success. Structured interviews, in which each candidate is asked the same questions, standardizes the interview process and focuses on aspects that have a direct effect on performance. The ultimate goal is to be able to use the interview as an independent data point when evaluating a candidate. Consider likeability (if it matters to the company) It’s easy for managers to gravitate toward individuals who they instantly connect with. Impressions that are made within the first 10 seconds of an interview can impact the outcome. However, managers should consider if it matters whether or not they like that person on a personal level. If it is an important quality, managers should rate the candidate’s likeability just as they would with other skills during the interview.

within the company. They should soften this approach when bringing the idea to colleagues, because they do not want to undermine the individuals who hired in those categories or cause backlash. At the end of the hiring process, managers should track how well they have done against the diversity goals they created. F HR Partners, a woman-owned, regional human resources consulting firm in Topeka, Kansas, specializes in human resources outsourcing and consulting services, audits, assessments, compliance, training and organizational development, as well as Dietrick executive recruitment. HR Partners’ professional team has extensive knowledge and experience to develop customized solutions to fit an organization’s needs and culture. For more information, call 785.233.7860, 800.635.2310 or visit www.hrpartnersks.com.

Set diversity goals Managers should strive to make diversity goals a priority

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KSAE Magazine • Summer 2019 |





By Liz Stevens, writer, KSAE Magazine

rassroots campaigning is often used to describe political/social or fundraising campaigns. Unlike traditional campaigns, this type of fundraising turns the typical endeavor on its head – targeting not the rarified energy or wealth of the top few, but rather focusing on the collective strength of the many. Nonprofits and associations may benefit from adding grassroots campaigning to their array of outreach and fundraising techniques. Why change focus? The upsides of broadening donor bases In a Wethos blog post, author Janice Chan discussed the temptation for nonprofits to prioritize their high-dollar donors and take the small-dollar givers for granted. The erroneous rationale behind this thinking, said Chan, is the “myth of scarcity,” in which organizations believe

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that time spent pursuing small-dollar donors will eat up too much time that would otherwise be available for cultivating the major givers, thus leading to a financial downturn. Chan argued that this is plain wrongheaded and that smalldollar contributors are worth cultivating. She stated, “Smalldollar donors provide increased revenue, can be more vocal supporters and ambassadors for your organization once they’ve invested in your work, and can donate multiple times.” An article from Sumac, a provider of software for nonprofits, builds on Chan’s argument. “Targeting Major Donors Versus a Wider Donor Base” explains nonprofits with more, smaller contributors are hedging fundraising bets. “If an organization relies on the generosity of only a few donors, and, for whatever reason, these gifts get postponed or stop altogether, it could have financially devastating consequences.” www.ksaenet.org

The Sumac article acknowledged that it requires more work and operational overhead for an organization to maintain a wide donor base but states that the payoff comes in stability and diversification. Sumac’s “Small Donor Fundraising Tip” shines a light on the value of even the smallest donations, citing the success of such campaigns as the Salvation Army Bell Ringing Campaign. “Loose change adds up!” declared the article. “These drives gather micro-donations from the public that amass big support. Both allow everyone to contribute whatever they can, without pressure or complication.” Deciding to “go big” in terms of a donor base leads to another important aspect of this kind of campaigning: dividing the wide field of donors into manageable chunks. Who is the donor population? Categorize for targeted marketing Patrick J. Coleman, CEO of GiveCentral, offers astute advice about how fundraisers can evaluate their donor populations and create subgroups for more effective communications. In a Forbes.com post, Coleman suggested using segmentation, in which organizations create categories of donors based on their similar giving habits. “I have found that assigning your community members to a category or segment can help you communicate with the right people and discuss the things they most care about,” wrote Coleman. According to Coleman, it might be logical to group donors by their preference for giving on a monthly, quarterly or yearly basis, or to divide the donors into categories such as renewals, volunteers, lapsed donors and prospective givers. Each organization has a unique population of donors, as well as unique messages that are most appropriate for connecting with their various subgroups. Regardless of the diversity of donors and messages, however, there are some common traits among successful campaigns, noted below. Five tips for appealing to the grassroots 1. Create a plan In her Wethos blog post, Chan points out the obvious: grassroots campaigns don’t spring up on their own, like dandelions in the backyard. “There is a strategy, there are planned efforts to grow the number of small-dollar donors, www.ksaenet.org

“Small-dollar donors provide increased revenue, can be more vocal supporters and ambassadors for your organization once they’ve invested in your work, and can donate multiple times.” and these efforts are tracked, measured and evaluated to inform future efforts,” wrote Chan. One of Chan’s tips for getting every donor on board during fundraising is to use a challenge or matching gift campaign. Consider asking major donors to pose a challenge to smaller donors or consider enlisting major donors to match the donations in a campaign. “Challenges and matches can be a successful strategy for getting people on board, while giving your major donors a new way in which to support your organization and grow your capacity,” observed Chan. 2. Gather a tribe In a blog on npengage.com, She’s the First co-founder and CEO Tammy Tibbetts noted winning qualities from her own fundraising campaign experience. First on her list is community. “Foster a sense of unity (or competition) among participants,” writes Tibbetts. “That way, no one feels like they’re just a drop in the bucket.” 3. Use the power of story According to Tibbetts, “The organization’s impact is felt through inspiring stories.” Donors, large and small, respond to stories that bring an issue to life with real people, their plight and evidence of how donations can truly help. Tibbetts uses the power of story in two ways on her website, sharing both the impetus for the campaign and impact stories that chronicle the campaign’s success. 4. Set a goal Tibbetts considers the goal or urgency quotient of a campaign to be among the most powerful elements of a winning strategy. continued on page 14 KSAE Magazine • Summer 2019 |


STRATEGY continued from page 13

“There is a concrete goal and/or a deadline to incentivize someone to act soon,” she explained. Communicating the goal and the deadline for reaching it gives donors a target and the sense that there is an endpoint to the campaign.

had asked them for a one-time gift,” Chan explained. “For example, you might only get $25 as a one-time gift, but the same donor might be willing to pledge $5/month for 12 months (and $5 x 12 = $60).”

Chan cited the value of using goalsetting as it relates to recurring gifts, noting that asking for a small set amount – the goal to be pledged as a recurring gift – can add up to an even larger overall donation than a one-time contribution.

5. Evaluate and regroup Chan’s final two steps for grassroots fundraising success are evaluating the progress of a campaign and applying the lessons learned. She pointed out that grassroots fundraising delivers a large sample size, making it easier to see which

“Even if the amount per donation is lower, the recurring nature means that donor will likely give more than if you

continued on page 16

Local grassroots campaigns Trump administration trade war. Bible was among more than 100 participants who responded to the “Tariffs Hurt the Heartland” outreach campaign. This campaign has a Facebook presence (not to be confused with a Facebook Fundraiser) that features news items, events and stories about the impact of tariffs on American farmers and consumers.

Kansas Bar Association: Trivia Challenge In 2018, the Kansas Bar Association (KBA) used the energy of a competition to fuel its fundraiser. The KBA Trivia Night Fundraiser on October 18 pitted Washburn Law against KU Law to vie for the Law School Trivia Championship. The community for this campaign was law students, law school faculty/staff, and Washburn Law and KU Law graduates. Proceeds from entry fees for individuals or teams benefitted Kansas Legal Services.

Tariffs Hurt the Heartland In January 2019, Brent Bible, an Indiana soybean farmer, traveled to the US Capitol to voice his views on the

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R-CALF USA “Label Our Beef” Kansas cow/calf operator Mike Schultz is the chair of the R-CALF USA COOL Committee, which created the “Label Our Beef” grassroots campaign to raise resources that then were used to fund a nationwide grassroots advocacy campaign. The objective for R-CALF USA, a national nonprofit supporting the US cattle industry, was to urge President Trump to help American ranchers and farmers by restoring “country of origin” labels for beef. The “Label Our Beef” campaign has a website presence offering merchandise for sale, is tied into social media and raised more than $50,000 in its first four months. www.ksaenet.org

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continued from page 14

“Even if you have a more traditional community, do not shy away from connecting with them using technology platforms, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram that allow you to run campaigns.”

aspects of a campaign are delivering and which are not. Chan noted that some online campaigns include built-in tracking and statistics, and she concluded with this advice: “Use what you learn to continue to figure out how to make all of your donors feel valued, respected and like their contribution matters.” In addition to these tips, an important step in planning a successful effort is choosing a platform for a campaign, including webor social media-based campaigns. While it is its own can of worms, social media is currently a hot ticket.

donors’ email addresses unless the donors take the extra step to provide them. Peyrot considers this to be a major disadvantage since it is not possible to send a thank-you via email, provide updates on the impact of a gift or ask for additional donations. Despite the cons, Peyrot concluded that Facebook Fundraisers can be a worthwhile avenue. “Yes, definitely let people set up Fundraisers for your organization,” she said. “Yes, ask celebrities or influencers to set up Fundraisers for you.”

What about fundraising with social media? There’s an app (or 10) for that In his Forbes.com post, Coleman urged nonprofit fundraisers to explore the world of social media-based campaigns.

But while these methods are quick and simple, and ideal for small organizations seeking fast turnaround, Peyrot cautioned against giving up existing channels for fundraising. She summed it up: “Think of Facebook Fundraisers as a useful, potentially game-changing, new part of your program, rather than a replacement for your other efforts.”

“Even if you have a more traditional community, do not shy away from connecting with them using technology platforms, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram that allow you to run campaigns,” said Coleman.

For organizations that have decided to grow a grassroots community, it can be useful to divide that community into smaller, manageable chunks, adopt techniques from accomplished campaigners and tap into social media as a secondary platform. F

Facebook, for example, offers Facebook Fundraisers to individuals or Pages. Nonprofit-oriented website M+R, explains the basics of this platform in “Facebook Fundraising,” written by Amy Peyrot.

Sources Chan, Janice. “How Nonprofits Can Grow Their Grassroots Donors in 5 Steps.” blog.wethos.co Coleman, Patrick J. “How to Personalize Your Nonprofit Fundraising.” www. forbes.com Peyrot, Amy. “Facebook Fundraising.” www.mrss.com. Sumac. “Targeting Major Donors Versus a Wider Donor Base.” sumac.com Tibbetts, Tammy. “She’s the First.” Npengage.com.

On the plus side: ease of creation, seamlessness, spreads like wildfire. “The process to donate is seamless – donors never have to leave Facebook to make a gift,” explained Peyrot, adding, “Facebook Fundraisers also are designed to spread.” On the minus side: lack of tracking information. Campaigns do not receive

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By Geoff Beers, reprinted with permission from The Balance

xecuting a winning conference marketing campaign is critical for reaching attendance goals. In the digital age, the internet plays an important role in reaching prospects in an efficient and cost-effective manner. Most conference producers would say online marketing has made it significantly easier to reach targeted audiences, but they still must be organized and prepared to measure the ROI of each opportunity. The first step, before even considering an ad placement, is to make sure the conference website is ready to sell. This means creating a landing page on the site that sells the benefits of the event while providing easy access to registration information. This landing page will be where all advertising traffic will be directed to. Once it is in place, pursuing the marketing placements listed below can begin. In-house resources It should go without saying that every in-house communication channel available should be utilized to announce the conference. This includes email lists, blog readers, Facebook friends and Twitter followers. These channels represent the conference’s core audience, and they should be the easiest sales if approached with a respectful and value-driven message. Strategic partnerships Similar to in-house resources, targeting the communication channels of other closely related organizations can reap

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huge returns. Start with the people involved with the conference, from speakers to sponsors. Who among them is most likely to have a following that would be interested in the event? Many times, free advertising can be secured by simply asking for a mention in a partner’s email newsletter or Facebook page. This can even be negotiated into contracts with sponsors and speakers. Blogger outreach Blog advertising, whether through sponsored posts or banner buys, is one of the cheapest forms of online advertising. Take some time to find bloggers in the association’s niche and reach out to them for promotional opportunities. The best bloggers have a dedicated fan base that reaches thousands of people with similar interests, and they are always searching for new material to write about. A subtle announcement on the right blog can lead to an instant wave of traffic to the conference website. Industry calendars Here is another conference marketing opportunity that can be had for free or very little cost. Every trade magazine and association newsletter feature a list of upcoming events related to their industry, and many others maintain a calendar of events on their website. This is a service provided for readers, which means planners should be able to get their event listed for free. And don’t stop with the one or two publications that come to mind first. Think outside the box to target every potential outlet. www.ksaenet.org

There is an association for every imaginable career, hobby and lifestyle, so don’t limit event listings to only the wellknown ones. Internet forums Social media may be all the rage right now, but internet forums are still very popular because they are better suited for group discussions. Think about it, where else can a single question be asked and have it viewed by hundreds of passionate fans and experts? A simple Google search will reveal the most prominent forums centered on a topic, and planners probably won’t spend a dime to promote their event. If they aren’t a current forum member, then the courteous approach is to contact the webmaster and ask for guidelines on how to list their conference. Local listings The obvious choice for promoting a conference locally is the newspaper, but many of them charge a listing fee depending on where the event is posted. One alternative is to see if they offer an online community calendar where conference dates can be posted for free. Another oftenoverlooked option is the classifieds website Craiglist, and here planners can “repost” their ad every few weeks at no charge. Local convention and visitors’ bureaus will be happy to add events to their online calendar, and don’t forget to ask the host venue for a spot on their website. With all of the free and low-cost conference marketing opportunities available online, it might make sense to pursue these options before committing to an expensive media campaign. As tempting as it may sound to use paid platforms, like Facebook ads or Google Adwords, to reach prospects, the truth is that a well-executed internet outreach program has the potential to perform better – and at a fraction of the cost. But before jumping into an online marketing campaign, make sure the website is set up to sell the event and process registrations. F The Balance Small Business makes launching and managing a business easy. It is home to experts who provide clear, practical advice on entrepreneurship and management. With more than 50 expert writers who have extensive qualifications and expertise in their fields, The Balance covers personal finance, career and small business topics. For more information, visit www.thebalancesmb.com.

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ASSOCIATION NEWS 2019 KSAE Compensation and Benefits Survey Now Available The 2019 KSAE Compensation and Benefits Survey was done in conjunction with a group of state societies of association executives with support from Whorton Marketing & Research. Nearly 900 associations across the US participated in this year’s survey, including members and non-members of 30 SAEs. Participation included nine South, seven Northeast, 10 Midwest and four Western states. The KSAE report features its own data, state-wide. The national study compares compensation across states for 39 positions. Both the Kansas and full national reports present detailed compensation overall by budget and staff ranges, geographic scope and membership structure. To read the Executive Summary of the survey results, see page 24. KSAE Urges Members to Take Advantage of Social Media Online, mobile and social media networks have made it easier for associations to reach their members wherever they are. These platforms spit out data and analytics that can fuel marketing efforts and boost member engagement – but 1 8 5 4

only if planned properly. KSAE will host the educational event “Using Social Media to Engage Your Members” with InterHab Director of Education and Communications Meghan Shreve. During this session, learn about the latest trends in digital marketing and outline best practices for using data and analytics to measure success. The session will take place from 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. July 23. Register at KSAEnet.org. Visioning for the Future The Community Care Network of Kansas, formerly known as the Kansas Association for the Medically Underserved, recently completed a simultaneous rebrand and new strategic plan as a way for the organization to remain relevant AND help to create its own future. Hear from Denise Cyzman, chief executive officer, about the two processes, how the organization aligned them, and how they position the Community Care Network of Kansas well for the future. This event will take place from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Aug. 6. Register at KSAEnet.org. F



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By Andrea Engstrom, president, Bajillion Agency

magine association members being willing – excited even – to wear an association’s T-shirt on a Sunday, when all their other shirts are clean. Even better, imagine that when they talk about the association with their colleagues in the industry, they articulate what the association does for their business better than the head of the association could say themselves. What could possibly lead to such strong loyalty from members? It goes without saying that providing members with value and consistently excellent service is a foundational ingredient. Most associations probably already have that down. However, there is another ingredient that adds a vigorous kick to the secret sauce of unshakable member ties: strong branding.

An association’s brand says a lot about it as an organization. Strong branding helps solidify perceptions and provides an opportunity to share experiences with the world. A brand is not the name or the logo alone, it is how the association and its team share their story, the vibe that its environment creates, the gear people associate with that brand wear, the colors they connect to the association and the fonts and tone used in communications.

Top: The Kansas Optometric Association’s new logo is shown with various lockups that maintain its simple, clean lines and cool-toned color palette. Bottom: The logo helps KOA stay true to its history by modernizing its historic flame.

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Branding showcases an association’s commitment to professionalism, which instills further trust in members. Even more important, strong branding gives members something to be inspired by and to rally around. It fosters pride in membership and makes for eager brand champions – the types of people excited to wear an association’s shirt. All of that combines to help improve public recognition and raise the profile of the association, which can bring more members, value and revenue along with it. What makes for strong branding? Again, it is much more than just a logo. It also encompasses an organization’s identity and values. Think of it like the way a person’s face, style and personality all contribute to how other people think about them. For an association, that means everything from consistent use of purposeful color palettes, fonts and imagery, to the tone used to write with and the values embraced. And, of course, a sweet logo that’s modern, accurately represents the association’s mission and looks great on a T-shirt or a polo. Recently, the Kansas Optometric Association (KOA) made the decision to rebrand. It also rebranded its political action committee, subsidiary, children’s program and both of its charitable foundations, including the See to Learn Foundation, which provides eye care for children. Before rebranding, the biggest challenge for the KOA was summarizing its mission and more than 100 years of history and accomplishments in a way that was easy to explain and for members to understand. Armed with key messaging that simplified the complexities of the organization into bite-sized information, the KOA was able to succinctly and strategically reveal its mission, history and purpose to its audiences, including its own members. Those bite-sized key messages were further reinforced by the values pinpointed through what is referred to as the brand defining idea process. To do this, KOA identified its own values, the values of its members and where those values overlap.

A brand is not the name or logo alone. It is how the association and its team share their story. are aligned, so its messages are authentic and drive action. The key to any successful communication is knowing the motivations of both the association and the audience. KOA also was furnished with a new logo, color palette, style guide and video. With all these branding tools, the KOA is well equipped to create a bright future for the organization and continue advocating for the highest standard of eye care and the importance of vision health. For associations looking to benefit from stronger branding, here are a few tips to help get there. Keep in mind that using these elements with consistency is the key to effective branding: • Define the association’s mission, vision and values • Define how to come across and use that tone in communications • Use a professional, adaptable logo and brand badges • Use a color palette that represents the organization • Make consistent use of cohesive fonts • Use bold imagery that showcases the organization well It might be surprising who notices these changes, the loyalty that’s inspired as a result and all the new places the association’s shirt is spotted across the state. F Andrea Engstrom is a certified business coach and president of Bajillion Agency. Located in Topeka, Kansas, the Bajillion Agency is a creative firm that uses design to cultivate simple truth and solve big problems. Through strategic Engstrom discovery workshops, the agency helps clients create custom design solutions to tell their stories. For more information, visit bajillion.agency or call 785.408.5927.

That’s where the magic happens – because that’s where the motivations of both the association and its members www.ksaenet.org

KSAE Magazine • Summer 2019 |





he survey was conducted in February 2019 with 893 participating associations in 30 states. It is conducted every two years by state societies of association executives with Whorton Marketing & Research. • Each participating society of association executives is selling or distributing their own State Level Report showing the responses of in-state or regional peers to all compensation and benefits-related questions, including a detailed table showing mean, median and quartiles for 39 specific positions being tracked in the survey. • This report is supplemented by a 65-page 2019 National Report that features a graphical presentation of the findings with narrative discussing each finding, and detailed tables showing how compensation levels, staff characteristics, leave, retirement, insurance and the roles of the CEO vary by size (ranges of FTE staff and annual revenue), Census Area, geographic scope of the organization and its membership structure. Among this year’s study highlights: Compensation, chief executive • The CEO/executive director average annual salary was a mean of $148,906 and a median (midpoint) of $130,000. The mean increase of 4.4% from previous years was one of the largest increases by position.

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• Including bonuses, overtime and other pay, CEO/EDs earned a mean of $152,300. This is 6.4% higher than average total compensation from the 2017 survey. The 2017 survey showed little change from the 2015 survey, which had shown a sharp increase from the 2013 results. • The demographic profile of CEO/EDs is 52% male and 48% female and a mean of 11.1 years in the position. • CEO/ED salaries by size: Salaries vary considerably with the size and type of associations, of course. • The smallest organizations (0-2 FTE) pay their CEO/ ED a mean salary of $86,665, or 42% lower than the overall average. Organizations with 2.1-4.9 staff pay a mean salary of $122,377, or 18% lower than the overall mean. Organizations with 25 or more staff pay a mean salary of $290,262 or 95% higher than the overall mean. • By budget size range, organizations with annual revenue up to $400,000 pay their CEO/EDs a mean salary of $74,805. Those with revenue between $400k up to $1 million pay a mean salary of $115,956. At the other extreme, those with revenue greater than $5 million pay a mean salary of $275,551. • CEO/ED salaries by structure: Trade associations pay a mean salary of $$162,721, while individual www.ksaenet.org

member organizations pay $141,492, and hybrid membership organizations pay $138,454. The national report also features pay for AMCs, CVBs and nonprofit/charities. • By scope, local organizations pay a mean of $121,419, while state/regional organizations pay a mean salary of $146,829, and national/international organizations pay a mean salary of $183,603. • CEO/ED salaries by location: CEO/EDs in the West Census Area ($164,545) earn the highest mean salary, while those in the South ($143,618) earn the lowest mean salary. • By state, CEO/EDs have the highest average salaries in California ($183,187), Georgia ($181,519), Texas ($172,582) and Illinois excluding Chicagoland ($170,585). • The lowest average salaries are reported in Mississippi ($97,386), Oklahoma ($106,957), Tennessee ($117,509) and Arizona ($120,970). Compensation, other positions • Highest salaries: The positions with the highest mean salary are attorney ($127,437), subsidiary EVP/VP/director ($119,164), COO/deputy director ($113,182), CFO/VP/director of finance ($107,161) and government/lobbying VP/director ($105,090). • Other higher-salaried positions include research/ statistics VP/director ($97,907), CIO/VP/director of IT ($94,085), foundation EVP/VP/director ($93,173), HR VP/director ($86,538), marketing VP/director ($85,253), education VP/Director ($83,594), communications/PR VP/director ($78,364), membership VP/director ($77,588), meetings/ conventions VP/director ($76,628), PAC coordinator ($70,913) and sponsorship director/manager ($70,397). • Mean current salaries for positions paid at least $50,000 include accountant/accounting manager ($63,629), editor ($63,619), database administrator ($62,731), grants/contract manager ($62,052), website content manager ($60,696), exposition manager ($59,537), education manager ($58,936), component relations/regional manager ($58,136), ad sales representative ($57,672), communications/PR manager ($57,154), membership manager ($55,904), office manager ($54,894), meeting planner ($54,368), credentialing program specialist ($53,936) and social media manager ($52,107). • Lowest salaried positions are reported for publications/ www.ksaenet.org

communications coordinator ($48,237), education coordinator ($44,828), bookkeeper/accounting clerk ($44,583), membership coordinator ($43,032), administrative assistant ($42,773), meetings coordinator ($42,719) and receptionist ($34,786). • Annual increases vary by position. Credentialing program specialist and communications/PR manager have mean current salaries that increased at least 6% from the previous year’s mean salary. • Membership VP/director, COO/deputy director, social media manager and component relations/ regional manager each increased at least 5%. • At the other extreme, bookkeeper/accounting clerk, marketing VP/director, sponsorship director/ manager, publications/communications coordinator, PAC coordinator and office manager each had mean salary increases of less than 2%. • Human resources VP/director, research/statistics VP/ director, administrative assistant and grants/contract manager positions showed an annual decrease in mean salary. continued on page 26

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ASSOCIATION continued from page 25

• Salary changes were based primarily on merit (59%) or cost of living (46%). Fewer than 25% report basing increases on general/across the board raises, promotions, incentive plans or length of service. Role of CEO • The CEO is generally retained under a formal contract (49%), and some with a verbal agreement (23%) or informal letter of agreement (21%). • Most contract/agreements require a formal performance review (71%), include a termination clause (62%), tie compensation to comparable data or benchmarks for salary and benefits (57%) and allow for termination by employee (57%). Insurance benefits • Annual leave: Staff with a minimum one year of service get a mean of 77 hours of annual vacation and 65 hours of sick leave, or 103 hours of paid time off if a PTO system is used. • This level rises to an average 166 hours of vacation and 71 hours of sick leave, or 180 hours of PTO at the highest level of experience (typically 15+ years). • Medical insurance generally is offered through a PPO (47%) or sometimes an HMO (19%), high-deductible health plan (19%) or health savings account (16%). 18% report not offering medical insurance. • Coverage under the PPO often is extended to children (74%) and spouse (77%) and sometimes other family members (13%). • HMO coverage also covers children and spouse with a similar frequency. HDHPs cover each of them in at least 80% of organizations using them. • Employers cover a mean of 84% of PPO and 86% of HMO employee premiums, and 35% and 32% respectively of PPO- and HMO-dependent premiums. • 62% report no recent changes to their health insurance program. Only 20% have increased deductibles, and 13% each increased out-of-pocket maximums or changed the type of plan offered. • Only 66% offer life insurance to CEOs and 50% to other upper management. Fewer offer dental and disability insurance. Average coverage for CEOs is a mean of $192,700 and a median of $60,000. Mean coverage for other upper management ($83,738) and other staff ($75,429) is considerably lower. The

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benefit is a mean of roughly 150% of salary for all three levels of staff. Retirement and other benefits • Plan structure is generally 401k (60%); 18% offer a simple IRA and fewer offer SEP, 403(b) or simple 401(k). • Average maximum employer contribution is a mean of 6.0% and median 5.0% of salary. • Employees work about eight months to become eligible for the retirement plan, down from 12 months in 2017. • Employees either vest immediately (59%), 100% after three or five years (22%) or graduated partial (10%). • CEO benefits generally include paid professional membership dues (79%), cellphone fees (75%) or purchase (67%), and a bonus (60%). • Maternity/paternity leave is the only benefit offered more often to other staff (53%). • Median spending on professional development is $2,000 for CEOs, $1,500 for other upper management and $510 per person for other staff. Participant profile • Scope: 64% are state, 15% local, 5% regional/multistate and 17% national/international organizations. • Structure: 43% are trade, 31% individual member only, 18% are hybrids, 3% are AMCs and 4% are nonprofits and CVBs. • Average annual gross revenue is a mean of $2.8 million and median of $1.0 million. Salary plus benefits is a mean $1.08 million and median $404,000 with mean employee health insurance spending of $108,000. • Membership is a mean 7,493 and median 800 overall, trade associations reporting a mean of 521 organizational members and IMOs reporting a mean of 11,800 individual members. • IRS classification is 501(c)6 for 73% and 501(c)3 for 20%. 43% report a foundation and 17% for-profit subsidiaries. • Average FTE staff is a mean of 10.2 and a median of 5.0. 25% each report 0-2 and 2.1-4.9 staff, while 8% have 25 or more staff. F www.ksaenet.org

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By Bob Harris, CAE, nonprofitcenter.com

very chief elected officer wants to have a successful year. Their ambitions are expressed in installation speeches and inaugural president’s messages. However, not all presidential initiatives come to fruition. Factors such as lack of support, unexpected distractions and setting too much to do with too little resources will be roadblocks.

satisfaction levels, market share, retention rate and value for dues investment.

One way to approach success is through reverse engineering. The concept is a process in which a system, product or outcome is analyzed backwards to identify the steps needed for the desired result. It often is applied to manufacturing or software development but works for associations too.

Workforce: How the organization empowers and involves its paid workforce. Factors may include sufficient investment in professional development and longevity of staff.

Consider this example. The elected president announces, “The association will pass a government regulation to protect the profession.” Chances of success are enhanced by analyzing the steps and working backwards. One way to frame reverse engineering is to use the criteria in the national Baldrige Award. Nearly every US state has a similar quality model promoting organizational excellence. Organizational elements The Baldrige criteria includes seven elements. Leadership: How the board and staff lead the organization and the community. Strategy: How the organization develops and implements a strategic plan. Customers: How the organization builds and maintains relationships with members. Factors might include

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Measurement: How the organization uses data to support key processes and manage performance. Nearly everything in an association can be measured and reported with dashboards.

Operations: How the association develops, manages and improves processes and procedures. Associations often document activities in manuals. For instance, leadership, policies, communications and crisis management manuals. Results: Whether the association has significant results, for example, improving safety, reducing unemployment, enhancing the economy or passing the new law the elected president announced. Reverse engineer the goal In the example of the president intending to pass a regulation to protect the profession, aligning the Baldrige elements will advance success. Here are the steps in reverse order: Results: Even though this is the seventh criteria in Baldrige, start with and describe the vision of success. For example, the outcome for the elected president who announced the goal of passing government regulation to protect the profession. Frame a clear vision that others can support. www.ksaenet.org

Operations: The sixth criteria focuses on operations. Does the board have the operations to support the goal? It may take a letter writing campaign, group visit to the Capitol or development of a white paper. Workforce: The fifth criteria is the workforce needed to support the efforts. Lobbying is often outsourced. Staff involvement is important for a comprehensive approach. Measurement: The fourth criteria is to measure the interim steps while working toward the goal. Metrics may include increasing contacts with lawmakers, measuring public opinion and raising political support. Membership: The third item in Baldrige is member involvement. Engaging the membership through grassroots, and Capitol visits are the logical next step. Strategy: The second to last criteria is to develop a strategic plan to carry out the goal. Dealing with government regulation often takes more than a year’s work.

Leadership: Finally, get the buy-in of leaders. They should agree on a position, rationale and consistent messaging for a unified approach. “Reverse engineering is an easy process. If one doesn’t have the vision for success, it rarely happens,” said Bill Pawlucy, CAE and former Malcolm Baldrige National Examiner. Conclusion Often goals are announced but fall short. Possibly the elements were not identified and aligned. Perhaps success was not envisioned in the beginning. Use the Baldrige model to reverse engineer and set a plan for success. F Bob Harris has more than 30 years of experience with associations, chambers and other nonprofits. His specialties include strategic planning, board roles and responsibilities and staff training. For more information, visit www.nonprofitcenter.com.



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1-800-OLD-WEST KSAE Magazine • Summer 2019 |


INDUSTRY NEWS High School Students Become Business Athletes at INSPIRE Business Camp High school juniors, seniors and recent graduates interested in pursuing a college degree in business are encouraged to join like-minded, motivated high school students and recent grads at the INSPIRE Business Camp, specifically designed to develop their business prowess for future success. The Kansas Society of CPAs is proud to power the inaugural Accounting Kick-Start Program’s INSPIRE Business Camp. The camp, which runs from Aug. 2-3, is hosted by the Wichita State School of Accountancy and the Epsilon Tau Chapter of Beta Alpha Psi. For more information, contact Natasha Schamberger 785.272.4366 or email natasha@ kscpa.org.

From left: Jay Langley, CPA, CGMA (Summers, Spencer & Company, P.A.); Congressman Dr. Roger Marshall; Joe Ronnebaum, CPA (PricewaterhouseCoopers, LLP); and Amber Goering, CPA, CGMA (Goering and Granatino, P.A.)

KSCPA Members Visit Washington, D.C. On May 21, members of the Kansas Society of CPAs visited Kansas lawmakers in Washington, D.C., to discuss the accounting profession’s advocacy agenda. The Kansas CPAs were attending the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) Spring Meeting of Council and Annual Members’ Meeting from May 19-21. For more information, visit www.kscpa.org.

Visit Overland Park VP Recognized as a “15 Over 50” Mindy Lallier, vice president of business development at Visit Overland Park, was recognized as a member of Connect Corporate’s inaugural “15 Over 50.” The honor highlights veteran event professionals who have contributed in multiple Lallier ways to the industry. Lallier leads all business development efforts that bring new group visitors and revenue to Overland Park. For more information, visit www.collaboratemeetings.com. Leavenworth Educator Inducted into EdTA Hall of Fame Jefferson County North High School teacher Jennifer Morgan-Beuchat of Leavenworth, Kansas, is among the five honorees for the 2019 Educational Theater Association (EdTA) Hall of Fame. Morgan-Beuchat chartered Troupe 6178 at Jefferson County North High School and has revitalized Troupe 287 at Leavenworth Senior High School. In addition, she serves on the Educational Theatre Association’s Advocacy Leadership Network co-chairing the Rural and Small Schools Committee, the Educational Theatre Foundation Chapter Advisory Committee, and the cadre for EdTA’s lesson plan adjudication. For more information, visit www.schooltheatre.org. KCA Member Receives Recognition Michael White, executive VP at the Kansas Contractors Association, Topeka, Kansas, was awarded the Outstanding Citizen Award from the Kansas Society of Professional Engineers during a February luncheon. For more information, visit www.kansascontractors.org.

NEW FACES Adam York has been selected for a new position as director of programs for Kansas Grain Sorghum Commission and Kansas Grain Sorghum Producers Association. York joins Kansas Grain Sorghum with years of experience in federal policymaking with a focus on agriculture, energy and trade work.



30 | KSAE Magazine • Vol. 3

Braden, Heidner Lowe & Associates (BHL), announced Travis Grauerholz has been hired as government relations and association management director, and Blake Murray has been hired as a government relations and association management manager. F www.ksaenet.org


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rom setting a budget to choosing a venue and speakers, it takes an extraordinary amount of time and planning to put on a successful conference. With the enormous amount of effort such a production requires, organizations should get the biggest bang for their buck. A conference is the perfect way for an organization to stand out in its industry or field and embracing technology, such as livestreaming, is one way to do that. The first live television broadcast took place nearly 70 years ago, and people the world over have been captivated by it ever since. More than half a century later, YouTube became one of the fastest growing websites with some 65,000 videos uploaded daily. Peering into each other’s lives through online videos paved the path toward livestreaming – a method of transmitting or receiving live video and audio coverage of an event over the internet. With several professional and more

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casual platforms in existence, livestreaming is used in many scenarios, and it is gaining acceptance among associations as a tool to use at conferences. Whether an entire conference is broadcast over the internet or just specific portions, such as the keynote speeches or breakout sessions, offering a live glimpse of what is taking place can be valuable for several reasons. For example, attendees beyond those physically present can be reached. While some people may not physically be able to attend due to a host of obligations, others may be unsure if the event is worth their time and money. Through livestreaming, those unable to travel can see how beneficial their physical attendance may be in the future. Furthermore, livestreaming an event can lead to an increase in physical attendance. It is a common misconception that a www.ksaenet.org

virtual event will cannibalize the physical event. In reality, associations are seeing a 10 to 30% conversion rate of remote attendees who become physical attendees for future events. Livestreaming also can increase revenue for an association through various avenues; for instance, offering access to live feed of the event and charging a fee. Additionally, viewers may be willing to pay a fee to download and watch the event on-demand. Furthermore, if the event is supported by advertisers, an association can present a number of packages to sponsors where their name and logo are seen during the webcast. A single advertiser can appear throughout the entirety of the live-streamed event, or several advertisers can have their name and logo shown during specific segments of the webcast. Providing attendees a unique and worthwhile experience is key to an event’s success. Utilizing this novel tool makes an organization stand out simply because it is not yet widely used. It also offers opportunities far beyond an in-person only event. For instance, showcasing industry or corporate

leaders as the keynote speaker often is not feasible for several reasons. Due to budget and time constraints, associations cannot regularly rely on “big names” for their keynotes. However, a live video conference allows for such rare treats, saving the association money and the keynote time. A big-name presenter also can drive interest and garner more attention for the conference itself. Livestreaming has benefits that reach beyond the live webcast. Exploring options for repurposing event footage can be crucial to future success. Often association leaders wrongly assume that footage from the event is no longer useful once it ends. This is not true. The recorded footage can be repurposed over and over in several ways. In addition to archiving and offering it on-demand, it can be shared in short clips on social media platforms to continue engaging members throughout the year. Clips also can be used to attract sponsors and advertisers for next year’s event. Quality marketing material is something that ultimately can increase attendance for future events. continued on page 34


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TECHNOLOGY continued from page 33

As livestreaming continues to expand, platforms for presenting the content also expand. Some options are free while others charge a fee. For instance, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube all have free options for streaming events, and this can help promote and boost viewership. Some platforms offer the option to show more than one video feed on the screen, and this may be helpful if any presentations will show camera footage and slides simultaneously. The event should be reached online easily, meaning no viewer should struggle to download a plug-in or experience other connection difficulties when streaming. To get started, all that is needed is a camera, a computer or hardware encoder, internet connection and a platform or streaming service provider. Choosing a camera that suits the unique needs for an event is essential because the audience will appreciate high-quality. Furthermore, some events may be streamed best by using multiple cameras for recording footage from different sessions, booths or tables. The camera is used to record the conference and then it is linked to a computer or hardware encoder that will allow the footage to be livestreamed and transmitted continuously along the internet connection to the chosen platform. From the platform, the stream is delivered through a network of servers to the audience. Again, many of these elements are seamlessly embedded into the platform software. Another option available for streaming is to hire a professional production company. Many aspects about the content should be considered when an event is broadcast on the internet. The content shared over the livestream should work not only for the in-person audience but also the online audience. If it is relative with vibrant speakers, the audience is likely to be engaged no matter where they are sitting. For the online audience, a moderator can help facilitate a pleasant environment and continue to captivate the viewers. The content also must be clear for the viewers, so working out any audiovisual kinks is imperative.

It is a common misconception that a virtual event will cannibalize the physical event. In reality, associations are seeing a 10 to 30% conversion rate of remote attendees who become physical attendees for future events. to avoid glitches. If different people in various locations participate in the test, it will help determine if any problems that arise are caused by their connection or the stream. And since technology is not infallible, a backup plan can prevent possible failures. For example, if the stream crashes, a recording can be made available on-demand. A host of other materials and people may be required for streaming events. Deciding what and who to use should be factored into the budget. For instance, should the budget include a skilled camera person or persons? Will extra staff be needed to help with set-up or tear down? Are funds available to hire help with the technical side of streaming? The unique details of each event – like the number of cameras, the venue size, etc. – will determine the specific needs and associated costs. Although perhaps intimidating to those who do not think of themselves as being overly tech-savvy, starting out small and simple may be the best way to begin. Instead of streaming the entire conference from the get-go, consider showcasing one session or just a keynote speaker. Evaluate the audience’s reaction and make corrections for future events. In short, the opportunities of livestreaming may well be worth the investment. The advantages and possibilities of livestreaming events can be a win-win for everyone involved – audiences have greater access to events and information, and organizations can generate new revenue by both driving future attendance at such events and generating material for future outreach and marketing campaigns. F

Testing the livestream in advance may help keep complications at bay. Consider testing several days or weeks in advance but also run a test on the day before or the morning of the event. Mimic the live environment

34 | KSAE Magazine • Vol. 3


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By Brittany Willes, managing editor, KSAE Magazine

ur organization is 100% banker-driven. Our first priority as a nonprofit is to serve our banks and the employees who work for them,” said Doug Wareham, president and CEO of the Kansas Bankers Association (KBA). “Every program we offer is the result of a committee of bankers or our board of directors requesting that program. We are dedicated to helping our member banks and their customers succeed.” Established in 1887, KBA has spent decades helping members through its emphasis on advocacy, leadership, insurance products and educational programs. These opportunities are completely “banker-driven” with KBA’s various committees of bankers offering input on nearly every form of training provided. “Our bankers depend on KBA for the latest information with respect to compliance issues, economic trends and professional development for bank employees at every level,” stated Wareham. As such, the association has developed an impressive array of educational opportunities from multi-day conferences to one-day seminars and workshops to a variety of online training sessions such as webinars. In addition to conferences and webinars, KBA has the ability to develop and provide in-house training for bank employees. “KBA has its own robust legal department, which sets us aside from other associations,” explained Wareham. KBA’s legal department consists of attorneys and former bank compliance officers. “We’re able to tap into our own legal expertise in order to provide the kind of in-house training that many member banks wouldn’t otherwise have access to,” he stated. For example, KBA holds annual legal update workshops for bankers throughout Kansas. While these workshops are held in a variety of locations throughout the state, it can be difficult for some to arrange for employees to travel and spend time away from the bank. This is where in-house training becomes especially valuable for those

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The Kansas Bankers Association, which was established in 1887, aims to help its members via conferences, webinars and in-house training, among other programs.

members who need to be sure they are up to date on legal issues but may find sending employees to outside training sessions problematic due to staffing needs at the bank. “Banks can contact our Education Resources Department and make arrangements for our staff to come perform inhouse training for a variety of subjects. It works out well for our members, and we end up providing a lot of in-house training,” Wareham remarked. Like most associations, KBA also strives to represent its members through advocacy work at both the state and federal level. KBA serves as a conduit for bankers across the state, allowing them to keep abreast of activity at the Kansas Statehouse and in Washington, D.C. “Our government relations team works very closely with the members of our Kansas congressional delegation as well as the Kansas Legislature,” said Wareham. KBA has four registered lobbyists who maintain constant contact with state and federal lawmakers, as well as federal bank regulatory agencies and others whose rules impact the industry. The association also works very closely with the Office of the State Bank Commissioner, which is the primary regulator for state-chartered Kansas banks. www.ksaenet.org

According to Wareham, KBA’s number one advocacy issue is fairness. “The Kansas banking industry has no problem with competition,” he stated. “We simply want that competition to take place on a level playing field.” As he explained, there are several businesses looking to compete in the same marketplace but that aren’t necessarily as heavily regulated as the banking industry or that are able to take advantage of preferential tax breaks that banks aren’t privy to. Thus, KBA’s best means of supporting its members at the statehouse is by ensuring those competitors are subject to the same level of regulatory oversight and scrutiny. “We want anyone competing in our marketplace to be playing by the same rules,” Wareham said. This not only benefits the banking industry but also the Kansas community at large. While education and advocacy efforts have long been a part of KBA’s mission to benefit its members, more recent initiatives have been developed in response to member needs, including a consulting service designed to help banks address compliance issues. Approximately six years

ago, KBA launched a new subsidiary, Kansas Bankers Consulting Services (KBCS), LLC, where compliance officers and attorneys from its legal department directly assist banks with their compliance needs. KBCS’ services include performing audits for banks, reviewing and drafting bank policies or training other compliance officers. “We’re working to make sure bank staff are fully abreast of all federal and state rules and regulations they need to be in compliance with. Many of our member banks, especially smaller ones, are taking advantage of our compliance services to bolster the efforts of their own staff compliance officers,” said Wareham. The burden of compliance has grown dramatically in the past decade. As such, the association aims to help members navigate those issues rather than leaving them to muddle through on their own. KBA currently has around 108 banks utilizing its consulting services to help improve the compliance side of their operations.

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KBA also has a robust insurance subsidiary that houses one of the largest self-funded health insurance plans for its members. It provides all types of bank-related insurance in addition to helping members with their property and casualty needs. By growing the range of services it provides, the association has seen continued growth even as other states have experienced a decrease in the number of banks operating. “Just as many industries are seeing a great deal of consolidation, so too is the banking industry,” said Wareham. “Over the last five to 10 years, an average of 10 to 12 bank charters have gone away due to acquisitions and consolidation.” Fifteen years ago, just over 350 bank charters were members of KBA. Today, that number has fallen to 230. “Most people would say we lost 120 banks. What we actually lost was 120 charters. Those consolidated bank facilities are still operating, just under different ownership,” explained Wareham. “What we have are fewer Kansas banks with more branch locations. We have branches operating in more communities today than we did 15 years ago. The service to Kansas has actually increased.” Even with the advent of online banking, Wareham and KBA feel there is as much need for the association as ever. Representing 99% of all commercial banks operating in Kansas and the more than 14,000 Kansans working for them, KBA remains a crucial resource. Other states haven’t been as lucky as Kansas with the number of banks declining to the point where it has had a negative impact on the state association. “I think this is an opportunity for us,” said Wareham. “When we look to the future, we believe we’ll not only be serving banks in Kansas, but we’ll be partnering with other state associations. Especially in our region where it makes sense and where we have resources that can benefit those states while also helping maintain a strong association for our Kansas banks.” It’s not just other states that KBA is looking at when looking to the future. Led by the efforts of the association’s foundation, the Kansas Bankers Educational Foundation, KBA plans to enhance the number of college graduates entering the banking industry. “We have re-energized our foundation and are working to recruit the next generation of Kansas bankers,” said Wareham. Currently, the association is working closely

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To learn more about the KBA, visit ksbankers.com. with and offering scholarships at Fort Hays State University, Benedictine College and the University of Missouri-Kansas City for students who are pursuing degrees related to banking and finance. KBA also is working to provide students with internship opportunities with Kansas banks. College students aren’t the only ones benefiting from KBA’s efforts at recruiting and retaining the next generation. The association’s Young Bank Officers of Kansas is a program specifically designed for young bank officers in the industry. The program sponsors conferences for young bankers and provides opportunities to network with peers their own age, allowing them to enjoy being in the industry as they grow professionally. One of the testaments to the KBA is the fact the association experiences very little turnover, with many employees on the 31-member staff team having 20, 30 and even 40 years of tenure with the organization. “There’s no better group of individuals or industry to work for than Kansas bankers,” shares Wareham. “Our staff team is grateful for the opportunity to work with so many wonderful leaders that recognize that their bank will only do well if their community is doing well. Kansas bankers always remain focused on the big picture, and they bring that attitude to the association when they serve on our committees or board of directors. They play a big role in providing the pieces that make a community and our association strong.” While Kansas bankers continue to make their communities stronger, KBA will continue its mission to make its members stronger and more successful through its array of services, advocacy and opportunities focused on workforce development. “After 132 years serving the banks of Kansas, our core purpose of advocacy and education hasn’t changed, but the range of services and support we provide for our industry have expanded significantly,” said Wareham. “We want to be the leading resource for our member banks, and we believe the best way to accomplish this is to continue listening closely to their needs and developing our services to match those needs.” F www.ksaenet.org



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By Shahira Stafford, owner, Stafford Public Affairs, LLC

he 2019 Kansas legislative session adjourned on May 5, with the ceremonial sine die closing on May 29. This year’s 77-day session was relatively short and quiet as compared to some in recent years. From Medicaid expansion to education finance to budget and tax policy, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle left Topeka this year with both victory and compromise. New administration, new Legislature Former state Sen. Laura Kelly was sworn in as Kansas’ 48th governor in January. Kansas has elected five Democratic governors in the past 50 years – most recently Kathleen Sebelius in 2006. Kelly is also the third woman to be named governor of Kansas. People eagerly watched to see how Kelly and her administration led during their first months in office. Kelly promised to comply with the Kansas Supreme Court’s order for more money toward K-12 education, expand Medicaid and strengthen mental health and children’s services – all within a balanced budget and without raising taxes. She has maintained a consistent thread of compromise and middle ground in all her messaging so far. In contrast, a more conservative House of Representatives was also in place for the 2019 session. Republicans maintained their 84-41 majority in the House after the 2018 elections, but conservatives picked up a handful of seats from more moderate incumbents. Nearly all leadership posts in both the House and Senate are held by conservative Republicans as well. Court finds school finance plan constitutional Rather early in the session, the Legislature approved an education finance bill that appropriates roughly $90 million per year in additional state funding toward K-12 schools. The measure is in response to the Kansas Supreme Court’s last opinion in Gannon vs. Kansas, which ordered the Legislature to account for inflationary increases in the base state aid per pupil. The bill also includes student outcome accountability measures for schools and targeted programs for at-risk students. The plan was backed by the governor

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and largely supported in the Senate. It was a tougher sell in the House, however, who wanted to see a less expensive K-12 proposal move forward. On June 14, the Kansas Supreme Court ruled that the Legislature did indeed meet its constitutional requirement to adequately fund schools with this bill. The court will retain jurisdiction over the lawsuit, however, to ensure that the state follows through. It seems that for now at least, this ends a decade-long legal battle over school finance in Kansas. Governor wins battle over tax policy A new committee was named this year to work through the trickle-down effects from the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act passed in late 2017. Because Kansas is a rolling conformity state, a law must be passed to decouple from federal law. The Legislature passed two bills, the governor vetoed both, and the Legislature was unable to override either veto. Both measures would have prevented a new tax on foreign income made by Kansas’ multinational companies, allowed Kansans the option to itemize on their state tax forms even if they claim the standard deduction on the federal level and restored 100% deductions for medical expenses, property taxes, charitable contributions and mortgage interest deductions. The second bill also required all internet retailers – including third-party administrators such as Amazon, eBay and Airbnb – to collect and remit tax on online sales made in Kansas and use that revenue to buy down the food sales tax over time. Kelly voiced strong opposition to any tax policies this year that might affect the state’s fragile budget. These bills would have resulted in lost, yet unexpected, tax revenue to the state’s coffers. Another attempt to decouple – in addition to broader tax policy discussions – is expected next year. Medicaid expansion delayed another year The governor’s Medicaid expansion bill narrowly passed www.ksaenet.org

the House in March. It then stalled in the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee and was in a political tugof-war between legislative leadership and Kelly until the last day of the session. Opponents argued that expanding KanCare to 130,000 additional Kansans would dismantle the state budget and reduce the quality of healthcare for everyone insured. House Republicans, however, were able to amend the bill to ensure the state phases out of expansion if federal funds drop below the current 90% rate, add a $25 per month per individual fee and prohibit Medicaid funds for abortion services. Senate leaders promised a summer study on the issue, which certainly will be attempted again next year. Association health plans Under new rules approved by President Trump, Association Health Plans (AHPs) are now allowed under the Affordable Care Act. As a result, the Legislature passed a bill this year that makes several changes to the state insurance code to allow for broader AHPs in Kansas. It also exempts the Kansas Farm Bureau (KFB) from state jurisdiction


in providing non-insurance, healthcare benefits to their members with no pre-existing conditions. Targeted spending approved in budget What is typically the last piece of business before adjournment, the Legislature approved a one-year omnibus budget bill with a few changes to the governor’s proposal. Key appropriations include a $51 million payment toward Kansas Public Employee Retirement System (KPERS) liability, which the governor line-item vetoed and Legislature overrode; matching funds toward local transportation projects; raises for corrections officers; and rehabilitation of the foster care system. F Shahira Stafford is a lifelong Kansan and has more than 13 years of experience in all aspects of association management, focused primarily on government relations and communications. She owns Stafford Public Affairs, LLC and can be reached at shahira@staffordpublicaffairs.com.


KSAE Magazine • Summer 2019 |



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