Human Resources

The Case for Board Succession Planning

By Jane Garthson
A Strong Talent Management Culture Can Pay Big Dividends. Read More..

Effective Delegation Can Impact Organizational Effectiveness - Delegating Not Only Saves Time and Money, It’s a Real Motivator!

By Nicole Burgess, CAE
Delegating tasks to both staff and volunteers is a regular part of what we do as association executives on a daily basis.  Given that delegation is so central to the day-to-day work of association management, can we then assume we are probably pretty good at it?  The answer arguably is no!  While it would seem that we are fairly good at handing off pieces of work to others, we often fail to delegate effectively and strategically.  Furthermore, delegation is not a skill that we tend to focus on or even likely think about, yet it is a skill that can potentially be the difference between being a high performing association or not.  Read More..

CAE® STUDENTS DISCUSS.................Career Management

Lots of valuable discussion and information exchange takes place between participants in the CAE® program, much of which, we believe, holds great value for all not-for-profit executives.  Here we look at some recent dialogue relating to career management.  Read More..

Converting Office Politics Into Positive Energy

By Mark Cohan
Office politics is how we as individuals interact with each other. The problem is that “office politics” is generally defined as the pursuit of a personal agenda/goals/self-interest that more often than not comes at the expense of others, and is thus negative to say the least. It is a strategy that by its very nature means there are winners and losers. Read More..

You and Your Board: Is Your Health at Risk?

By Judith Martin
Another year, another board Chair.  With the outgoing Chair’s departure, I was sure the coming year would be less challenging.  I’d observed the Vice-Chair in action. I was sure we’d work well together when his term commenced.  His quiet and modest demeanour suggested an open-minded approach to making good governance decisions.  I was wrong. 


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Preparing for the Point of Job Termination

By Jack Shand, CMC, CAE

When boards of directors fire, they don’t always do it well. Donald Trump’s showmanship as he points his finger across the boardroom table and decisively pronounces “you’re fired!” isn’t the best visual training program for employee termination. To his credit, at least he’s scripted and clear.

To be prepared for termination, board leaders should consider what to do before, during, and after firing their CEO.

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Culture Shift: Navigating from a Volunteer-driven

By Lexie Cardall

Whether it is to help youth or about a passion for fashion, an association’s birthright commonly stems from volunteering. But what happens when paid staff members are introduced to a predominantly volunteer based association due to evolution and growth?


Take for example: Ontario Fashion Exhibitors (OFE). The initial one man operation has grown extensively over the past 20 years. What was once an exhibit that relied heavily on volunteers evolved to a full staff team; eventually becoming an association without any volunteer involvement whatsoever. Within the last few years, the CEO, Serge Micheli, CAE, CEM, has focused on re-engaging volunteers and incorporating the spirit of volunteerism back into OFE. Micheli has experienced the shift both ways; initially, introducing staff to a volunteer driven environment and now incorporating volunteers within his staff team. His experience is extensive and he recognizes the need for balance throughout; the balance of his staff, his resources and his leadership.

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Hail to the Selfish Employee - Harness this Selfish Motivation for the Greater Good of Your Organization

By Moe Glenner
There is a common misconception that a selfish person makes for an unmanageable employee. After all, they are only in it for themselves. Perhaps this person will actually destroy the team dynamic that we all strive for within our organizations. We frequently seek out the 'all for one and one for all' mentality. We truly want the 'rah-rah, go team' imbued throughout our organization. We also love to repeat the mantra that 'there is no I in team.' What we overlook, is that while there may not be an 'I' in team, there is a 'me.' Organizations don’t pay positive attention to the ‘me’ oriented employees at their own peril. They miss on the opportunity to gain highly self-motivated team members whose working end result will significantly benefit the organization. Read More..


By Adriana Girdler

It’s the question no employee ever wants to hear from their superior: “Why hasn’t this project been completed yet?”

The problem in today’s work environment is that there are simply too many deadlines and commitments for any association to run effectively and efficiently. Small projects quickly turn into bigger ones, with the infamous statement: “I want you to add [insert favour or task] to your project…it’s really easy and won’t impact a thing.” So now, what was supposed to take a month or even a quarter now takes twice as long, without any additional funding or resources. Yet, the train still inches down the track and now management is pushing even harder for additional items to be completed in the same time frame, with the same resource allocations and budget.

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Sidestepping political pink slips

By Roma Ihnatowycz
It starts with a nagging feeling that something is just not right. You find you are regularly being sidelined by board members and senior volunteers, and that key decisions are being made without your input. Eventually, you’re called into a meeting and given the dreaded news. Your employment at the association is being terminated. Read More..