Notes from the Philippine Associations Summit 8

Octavio ‘Bobby’ Peralta, Founder & CEO, PCAAE, reports on a successful Philippine Associations Summit.

The Philippine Council of Associations and Association Executives (PCAAE), with the support of the Tourism Promotions Board (TPB), successfully held recently the eighth edition of its annual Associations Summit (AS8) with the theme, “Leading with Agility.”

The 2-day virtual event, which drew over two hundred attendees from here and abroad, featured eight webinars on association governance and management topics, a tourism-inspired opening session, the “Ang Susi” Awards 2020 presentation, and the 8th  General Council of Members Meeting.

Notable notes

Following are notable notes from speeches and presentations of the distinguished guests and speakers who graced the occasion:

Maria Anthonette C. Velasco-Allones, TPB chief operating officer: “The theme of the Summit resonates deeply with any leader who remains focused on achieving strategic organizational goals, sustains a creative mindset to explore new ways of thinking and doing things, and continues to commit and cultivate the spirit of shared service within the context of the leader’s team, our industry and, in a larger milieu, our country.”

Charlie Villasenor, chairman, PCAAE and Procurement and Supply Institute of Asia (Pasia): “The holding of the Summit could not have occurred at a better time than this as we endure the challenges the Covid-19 pandemic has brought. I am sure all of you have your own stories to tell on how you are surviving and transforming your associations, your professions, and industries. This is one of our greatest opportunities to spread the faith through events such as this one we are holding right now.”

Greta Kotler, chief global development and credentialing officer, American Society of Association Executives (ASAE): “I would like to congratulate the PCAAE for the work it has done for the last eight years and with the many contributions it has been making to Philippine society. We are also proud of the (PCAAE’s) ‘Association World’ magazine and the phenomenal job that you have been doing with that.”

Amy Hissrich, vice president, global and strategies, ASAE: “The complex challenges of 2020 spurred innovation and agility across associations around the world. As associations grapple with how to move to virtual meetings, address remote work, and evaluate new business models, it is just fitting that the topic of this year’s Summit is ‘Leading with Agility.”

In the same storm

Gihan Perera, futurist, speaker, author, and consultant: “We’re not in the same boat but in the same storm. Everybody is thinking differently about what matters to them. What used to work before might not work anymore now. Leading with agility needs three things: (1) to scan wider, i.e., think more of what’s happening outside your association; (2) to choose better, i.e., narrowing down your choice and choosing the path you are going to take to the future; and (3) to use wisely, i.e., leveraging and making use of the resources you’ve got. So when you’re making your plans, don’t aim for perfection but make what is good for you now, with a backup plan when things change.”

John Peacock, CEO, Associations Forum (Australia): “Successful associations consider these 11 essential elements: organizational structure and scope, constant review of their constitution, good governance, staff, finance, technology, member services (value proposition), communication, membership engagement, plans, and culture.”

Dot Miller, CEO, The Solution and Co-founder, National Credentialing Institute (USA), on planning: “At this time of the pandemic, consider doing 4-hour virtual ‘sprint strategy sessions’ (rather than a full day in-person retreat) with the Board by focusing on one or two topics of important concern.”

On reserve funds: “Your reserves are meant for crisis situations such as this time, so use it but start building it again as soon as possible.”

On hybrid events: “Try to avoid having two different ‘silos’ of attendees. Employ a hybrid ‘event concierge’ to manage and enliven audience interaction.”

On metrics for sponsors: “When a company sponsors an event, (it) wants to measure (its) return on investment. The most common metrics used to measure sponsorship ROI is to evaluate the amount of exposure the sponsor received throughout the campaign.”

Toni Brearley, CEO, Australasian Society of Association Executives: “Member-centric associations focus on providing member experience as a top priority. Doing so means: (1) being clear on your ‘why’; (2) starting where you are; (3) involving your members; (4) starting small (think evolution and not revolution); and (5) making member experience everyone’s job.

Ma. Alegria S. Limjoco, vice chairman, Philippine Retailers Association: “Agile associations need to leverage on: (1) exponential technologies (for Industry 4.0); (2) community collaboration; (3) asset outsourcing; and (4) social media platforms.

Agile & Flexible

Maria Victoria C. Españo, governor, Management Association of the Philippines (MAP): “Agility in the MAP Board is about: (1) commitment, (2) flexibility to use alternative communication channels, (3) work with many different committees, (4) financial strength, (5) (having) efficient and reliable secretariat, (6) collaboration with others, and (7) continuous learning.

Christopher Nelson, trustee and executive director, British Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines: “Associations today need to stay active, to be more engaged, to get support from as many stakeholders, to be relevant, and to look at the future.”

Rizchelle S. Manaog, program director, CFA Society Philippines; Bea Almero, executive director, iHome Greater Metro Manila; Anna Pasetes, executive director, Shareholders Association of the Philippines; and Ria Lu, executive director, Game Developers Association of the Philippines: “Agile associations provide members connection, communication, and service commitment through use of technology, collaboration and common actions, no matter the size of the organization.”

Lloyd Luna and Jesse N. Rebustillo, founder and president, respectively, Philippine Association of Professional Speakers; Fe Marie Cabantac, 2019 president, Philippine Society for Talent Development; and, Roberto Policarpio, 2015 president, People Management Association of the Philippines: “Leader skills needed now revolve around empathy, concern (for) others, and sharpening the ability to see and not to look.”

Cora Conde, group head, ADFIAP Consulting; Charlie Villasenor, chairman, Procurement and Supply Institute of Asia; Evelyn Salire, secretary general, Philippine Retailers Association; Ritzi Ronquillo, board adviser, International Association of Business Communicators; and Octavio ‘Bobby’ Peralta, founder and CEO, PCAAE: “Agile leadership traits center around adaptability, genuineness, insightfulness, leapfrogging ability, and entrepreneurial spirit.”

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