The Art of Membership

I am always juggling a few good reads. My current pleasure read is In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson. I just finished his other sensational read, Dead Wake, about the final crossing of the Lusitania. I recommend both!

On the bar front, I am always juggling a few books. I am currently reading Open Leadership by Charlene Li. This read is about how social technology can transform us as leaders. I am always looking for professional, and quite honestly personal, ideas on improving me as an Executive Director, and always working on me as a person.

The second bar book I have just started is The Art of Membership by Sheri Jacobs. I started reading this one last night, which typically is a tough time for me to read, as I am battling the “sleep villains” that begin to creep into my house around 10 pm. But it was a good read, so I actually made it to around 11:30 pm, and still made it to the gym this morning by 5:30 am, I will have you know (just in case you were wondering).

Anyway, The Art of Membership, is a very interesting read. From the outset it states that I should be asking two very simple questions:

  1. Why did you join the MCBA?
  2. Why do you renew?

I found these two simple questions very interesting as they have the potential to offer a real variety of answers for some of you. Over the years I have heard why many of you join: professional obligation, CLE, health insurance, networking, “because I was told to on my first day as a lawyer”, “the MCBA makes me a better lawyer”, and the list goes on. From many government attorneys that leave their current positions, I have heard, “I should have joined earlier, because the networking is invaluable”.

Bottom-line, everyone has different reasons. And as your Executive Director, it is important that I not assume I know why you join. What is important is that I understand, and respect, that you all join for different reasons. If I do not know your reasons, then I am unable to see if we can deliver what it is you need, and most likely, some of your colleagues are looking for in terms of “membership value”.

So as we enter this annual membership renewal cycle, I am really interested in hearing from you? The membership renewal forms have hit your mailboxes by now or will be in the next day or so. And so in the coming weeks, and I am hoping not months, we are going to be nagging, pestering, nudging, reminding, and nagging some more so that you RENEW TODAY to take advantage of the 2 FREE CLE Credits (a $66 value) that come with this renewal period but only when you renew by June 30, 2015.

This is one of those blogs that I would really appreciate a short email back to me with your responses to both. A quick response is all I am looking for from you. So ask yourself:

  1. Why did you join the MCBA?
  2. Why do you renew?

Please email me directly at

There is an “art” to membership, and I want to become an expert, so please help me out here by providing some thoughtful ideas and suggestions.

Thanks for checking in…e-mail please


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