Meeting Our Members Where They "R"

I’m honored and excited for the opportunity to lead the National Association of REALTORS®’ Association Executive Committee in 2022, and I look forward to sharing the group’s vision for the coming year.

During 16 years serving REALTOR® associations, most recently as CEO of the Northern Virginia Association of REALTORS®, I’ve benefited greatly from collaboration with my AE peers from across the country. My colleagues on the AEC and I aim to leverage the experience and creativity of the AE community to promote innovation and collaboration that benefits our associations, our members, and the industry.

In thinking about the “hybrid” concept highlighted in this issue, it struck me that hybrid reaches well beyond the notion of in-person and online engagement. It requires associations to reach further, identifying all-new ways to provide programs, products, services, and engagement opportunities.

Associations must create stronger, more nimble, dynamic, and future-focused organizations where member engagement is everyone’s responsibility and we are aligned behind one core belief: that associations will meet members where they are based on how they do business. Through this lens, the AEC will pursue and accomplish its established goals in 2022.

Crowd of people on network connection lines

© Yuichiro Chino / Moment / Getty Images

Discussion among AEC members over the past year has centered on the use of a variety of strategies and tools, combined with existing resources, to “Meet Members Where They R.” We’re also exploring ways to raise the bar as an association and profession. In partnership with the AE community, we will focus on four main themes in 2022:

  • Identifying innovative ways to enhance member experiences that help associations connect with members and deliver services in a way that aligns with how members do business;
  • Embracing diversity, equity, and inclusion by identifying resources to create meaningful, sustainable DEI programs and leadership opportunities;
  • Recognizing, rewarding, and incentivizing local and state associations to excel, improve, and innovate so the REALTOR® organization can thrive in the future; and
  • Developing a shared set of positive, aspirational principles of association leadership that can serve as a model and guiding philosophy for volunteer and staff leaders.

As we contemplate innovative and collaborative ideas throughout the year and reimagine the way REALTOR® associations operate, I encourage us to work with our colleagues and volunteer member leaders to create an environment of excellence and professional success. Jessica Coates, 2022 AEC vice chair, and I look forward to being your partners in advancing the “R.”

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