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blog posts by

Sarah Sladek

Concerned about declining engagement in our nation’s membership associations, non-profits, and workplaces, Sarah Sladek founded XYZ University, the nation’s first and only generations-focused training and engagement strategy company, in 2002.

Generation Z

YouthQuake: Think adults are in charge? Think again.

Older adults often dismiss the youth voice and the power they yield –just ask Snapchat, the NRA, or Hosni Mubarak. Bringing younger generations to the table to make it more about collaboration, and less about power, will result in prosperity.

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Talent Development

Signs Your Business Doesn’t Know What – or Who – Matters Most

Are we measuring the wrong elements of success? Success in business is often defined by degrees, years of experience, hitting the bottom line, etc. Businesses that succeed today take measurements in how much they know about its audience, its team, and the future.

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Generation Z

Not Another Millennial Generation: 6 Ways Gen Z Will Disrupt the Workplace

Millennials brought changes to the work environment and marketplace. Get ready to adjust again and figure out how to balance different needs as Generation Z seeks something different from work.

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Scary Stats

The Terrifying Truth About Teacher Talent and Turnover

Despite being an up-and-coming, in-demand generation, and one that’s consistently shaping how we think about work, Millennials—ages 22-35 and the largest percentage of the workforce—are still having a hard time finding reasonable jobs. Presently, the Millennial unemployment rate stands at an unfortunate 12.8 percent compared to the national average of 4.9 percent.

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Scary Stats

The Frightening Facts of Finance

In 2010, OCBC, a bank in Singapore, conducted research with more than 1,000 Millennials (1982-1995), revealing that young people felt neglected by and disengaged from financial providers. As a result, OCBC rolled out FRANK – a new kind of bank.

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Scary Stats

The Construction Conundrum

Harley-Davidson is a true American icon with real brand cachet. For a particular breed of leather wearing motorcycle enthusiasts, there is simply nothing on par with Harley. The motorcycle company was founded in 1901, but it wasn’t until the arrival of the Baby Boomers (1946-1964) that sales skyrocketed. Boomers embraced the Harley bikes as totems of rebellion in the 1960s and 1970s and drove its growth in the ensuing decades.

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Scary Stats

Don’t Eat Your Young

Can you imagine a community without healthcare? It’s a very real and serious challenge as our nation is now facing a healthcare workforce shortage.

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Scary Stats

Frightening Workforce Facts You Need to Know

Brace yourself. The Scary Stats are baaaaack! Since 2013, XYZ University has celebrated Halloween by reporting on the scariest workforce stats and this year is no exception. An even more frightening fact is that in the five years since we started reporting Scary Stats there’s been little to no improvement.

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Talent Development

Why Your Workforce Is Unhappy, Unproductive, And Disengaged

Labor Day in the United States has become synonymous with BBQs, vacations, and back-to-school shopping sprees. As you crowd around the grill or the mall today with family and friends, consider your own labor situations. Are you happy at work? Are the people you lead also happy at work?

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Generation Z

Ready or Not - Here Comes Gen Z

On Sunday I’m presenting a Learning Lab at #ASAE17 on Generation Z. Still trying to understand the Millennials? Well, ready or not, here comes Gen Z – the oldest who are turning 21 this year.

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Talent Development

New ASAE Book Talent Generation Offers Strategies for Associations to Engage, Retain Employees

ASAE has released a new book called Talent Generation: How Visionary Organizations Are Redefining Work and Achieving Greater Success by Sarah L. Sladek, CEO and Founder of XYZ University.

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Talent Development

How Long Will Your Organization Exist?

How long will your organization exist? Have you ever stopped to ponder this question

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Membership

Fear vs. Innovation: What’s Ultimately Driving Your Organization?

Last week I participated in ASAE’s inaugural XDP (experience design project) conference. At the conference, attendees were hopeful and inspired, but I couldn’t help but notice another emotion overshadowing much of the event: fear.

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Talent Development

Keynote Urges Associations to Solve Global Workforce Crisis

Sarah Sladek issues up a call to action to the global association community to solve the workforce crisis at the Association World Congress.

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Talent Development

A Call to Action for Hospitals: “We’re going to have deaths”

Healthcare is now the fastest-growing industry in the nation, partly because people are living longer and partly because the Baby Boomer generation—the largest generation of the 20th century and the largest percentage of the healthcare workforce—is now entering their retirement years.

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Generation Z

Are you ready for the Snapchat generation?

Snapchat's parent company, Snap, has made headlines for the better part of the past two weeks since its IPO on March 2. Snap's market value increased by nearly $9 billion on its first day of trading; it's first day pop being bigger than even Facebook's or Google's. Perhaps you're still not sure what all the fuss is about. Here's the skinny:

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Generation Z

Gen Z Will Change Your World. Again.

This year, our team watched history unfold in the news, as well as the workplace. In 2016, 3.6 million Baby Boomers retired, and a new generation, Gen Z (1996-2012), started entering the workforce.

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Generation Z

Move over Millennials

Millennials have been in the spotlight as of late, but Gen Z-ers (born 1996-2012) are quickly approaching a pivotal role in the workplace and marketplace. Who are they?

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Millennials

Why They Quit: XYZ University Researches Millennial Turnover

Millennials are notorious for job-hopping. These young adults, ages 21-34 and also known as Generation Y, change jobs three times more often than other generations. In fact, 48% of Millennials are planning to leave their jobs within the next 24 months.

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Talent Development

3 Steps to Solving a Workforce Crisis

When Danny Hearn contacted XYZ University five years ago, two daunting issues loomed over industries throughout the region of Hickory, North Carolina: how to attract and engage Millennials, and how to solve for the aging workforce crisis and talent shortage.

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Generation X

To Gen X, it was More than Purple Rain

The world is still reeling from the death of Prince Rogers Nelson, the multi-platinum-selling music legend who died on April 21. Prince was an influential artist in a recording career spanning 38 years, and his music became the soundtrack for Generation X (1965-1981) who grew up listening to his music.

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Millennials

Swift Lessons in Millennial Marketing

There’s no doubt 2015 was the year of Taylor Swift. Building off the success of her 1989 album, Swift’s world tour generated over $4 million per show.

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Membership

Engaging the Modern Millennial Family at YMCA

For the past year, XYZ University has worked with the YMCA of the USA, surveying 5,250 Millennial members nationwide, presenting at YMCA conferences, and developing membership strategies and a Millennial membership-building toolkit to help Ys engage the membership of Millennial families.

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Generation Y

Super Bowl Ads Try to Woo Millennials

The sports fans will talk about the game, the music fans will talk about the halftime show, and the foodies will talk about the food they ate during the game. But we at XYZ University look at an event like Super Bowl 50 from an entirely different point of view — the generational one.

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Millennials

The Most Unexpected Gift: Millennials

Close your eyes and think of the first word that appears when you hear “millennial.” Words likely to pop up are: entitled, self-absorbed, difficult, unengaged, or high-maintenance. Why do we criticize and avoid Millennials the way we avoid Aunt Matilda’s fruitcake?

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Generation Y

How Helicopter Parents Changed the Workforce

It’s back to school time, and as you prep your little darlings for another year of education, take some time to reflect on your own school experiences.

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Generation Z

Gen Z and Your Business: BFFs or Snapchat?

Just as companies are coming to terms with the wave of Gen Ys, another generation is creeping up behind them. Generation Z — the oldest who are turning 19 — are moving en masse into entry-level jobs, colleges, and internships. Born in the late 1990s and early 2000s they make up a quarter of the population and have little in common with their Gen Y predecessors. Here’s what you need to know about Z.

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Company News

Knowing Y in Holland

Generation Y. Millennials. Echo Boomers. Trophy Generation. Regardless of how you refer to them, organizations worldwide are really perplexed by the generation of young adults now moving into the majority of the workforce and consumer spending.

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Succession Planning

The World's Aging Workforce and What Your Business Should do About It

Despite projected growth in the global population from 6.9 billion to 7.6 billion in 2020, the working-age population is expected to decline. In fact, aging will likely add 360 million older people (Baby Boomers) to the world’s pool of those not participating in the labor force.

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Millennials

Rookie Talent: Avoiding a Kodak Moment

During most of the 20th century Kodak held a dominant position in photographic film, and in 1976, had an 89% market share of photographic film sales in the United States. Kodak began to struggle financially in the late 1990s as a result of the decline in sales of photographic film and its slowness in transitioning

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Succession Planning

What Would Scrooge Do?: Planning For Workforce Future

Tis the season for the celebration of one year’s end and another year’s beginning. Amidst all the champagne and time spent with family and friends, I encourage you to ponder the future–but perhaps a little differently than usual. Most of us are familiar with the famous story by Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol.

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Generation Y

Culture And The Bottom Line: Why Burritos Are Outperforming The S&P 500

You can’t put a price on culture. Or can you? Danny Meyer is a renowned New York City restauranteur and the CEO and founder of Union Square Hospitality Group. He believes success in any business is based on culture. In 2009 Meyer appeared on Jim Cramer’s show Mad Money.

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Generation Y

Want To Ace The Interview? Strategies For Gen Y Job-Seekers

Did you know? One of the biggest complaints employers have about Generation Y (1982-1995) is that they’re not prepared for interviews, and many employers consider hiring Gen Ys a risk because they leave their jobs faster than other generations and they are difficult to manage.

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Succession Planning

Scary Stats 2014: 10 Terrifying Workforce Truths

Brace yourself. This is scarier than any hairy spider, mean clown costume, or horror flick you could possibly see this Halloween. Last year, XYZ University sent out its Scary Stats debut, and it’s baaack and scarier than ever. We’re counting the stats down, working our way to the scariest stat of them all.

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Generation Y

Jobs For Rent: Documentary About Gen Y's Career Pursuits

JOBS FOR RENT is a documentary that chronicles Generation Y and their endless pursuit of jobs and career, in contrast to the Baby Boomer’s more stable path.

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Generation X

Xers, Ys Spur A Political Power Shift

I watched the televised coverage of the Iowa caucus with great interest, not only because I grew up in the state, but also from a generational perspective.

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Generation Y

Apply Now For Next Generation Employer Of Choice Awards — Deadline To Apply Is July 31st

The Next Generation Employer of Choice Awards is now accepting applications! This unique awards program will recognize organizations that are doing an exceptional job at recruiting and retaining the younger workforce. Applications are now available. The deadline to apply is July 31, so make sure to be included. A panel of judges will determine the winning companies and results will be announced on August 14.

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Generation X

Is Your Industry Aging Out?

FACT: In the wake of the Great Recession, some Baby Boomers are delaying retirement, hoping that a few extra years of work will help them replenish nest eggs devastated by the economic downturn.

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Generation Y

XYZ University Webinar Prepares Associations For Future Generations

Recruiting younger members is essential to the future of associations if they are going to remain vibrant and relevant and sustain.

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Generation Y

Lost Generation Video: Redefining Negative Stereotypes

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Company News

Come See Us At #Asae14!

We are gearing up for a fun-filled weekend of networking with association professionals as part of the ASAE Annual Meeting and Expo in Nashville, August 9-12. We’re so excited that we thought we’d give you a sneak peek at some of the great reasons to come visit XYZ University at this year’s event (Booth #1713). Don’t miss it!

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Generation Y

Rockstars@Work: The Anti-Corporate Culture

The phrase “Anti-Corporate Corporation” may seem like an oxymoron, but Tony Nuckolls of Quicken Loans proved the contrary in his presentation at the RockStars @ Work Conference.

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Generation Y

When Boomers Behave Badly

At a recent workshop, one of the participants complained about their Gen Y workers. As an example of the “horrors” that Boomer managers have to deal with, he said indignantly. “Some Gen Yers even bring their parents along on interviews!”A couple of the other participants nodded in sympathy.

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Generation X

Your Bridge To Access

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Generation Y

A New Generation Of Socialites

On New Year’s Eve, my husband surprised me with dinner at one of the classiest restaurants in downtown Minneapolis. Upon our arrival, we were surprised to discover that most of the people eating there weren’t established couples enjoying a romantic evening, but rather boisterous groups of Gen Ys

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Generation Y

Keeping The Faith: Xers, Ys Seek A New Way To Worship

Religion has made significant strides recently toward reaching younger audiences.Faithbook launched as the first interfaith page on the popular site Facebook in an effort to foster greater understanding among people of different religions.

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Generation Y

Rockstars@Work: Behind-The-Scenes At Dreamworks Animation

At the RockStars@WorkConference, hosted in Minneapolis on October 20, 2009, Meredith Berens, head of Human Resources for DreamWorks Animationgave us the insider scoop on what it's like to work for the leader in family-friendly entertainment.

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Membership

Next Generation Association Highlight: Choose Chicago

This post is part of XYZ University’s “Next Generation Association” blog series, highlighting associations around the country who are making strides in engaging the next generation of members and leaders. If you would like to nominate an association for our “Next Generation Association” series, please contact Melissa Harrison.

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Succession Planning

Get Your Succession Plan Up To Speed

Succession planning is a lot like getting exercise. You don’t just do it once and call it done. It’s something that needs to be revisited regularly to keep you healthy. Succession planning, like exercise, also seems to fall into the category of something everyone knows they should do but no one actually does. But you want your organization to be healthy, so let’s get your succession plans up to speed. We say “speed” because it needs to move.

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Generation Y

Rockstars@Work: Gen Y-Focused Values For The Workplace

Nadira Hira, an award-winning journalist and writer for Fortune Magazine, gave akeynote presentation at the RockStars@ Work Conference. A Gen Y herself, Nadira has written numerous articles about Generation Y's influence on the workplace.

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Generation Y

Welcome To XYZ University: Learn How To Become A Next Generation Association

Welcome to XYZ University, the first generation-specific networking and learning community for association executives! XYZ University features the latest information on how to succession plan and effectively recruit and retain younger members to your association.

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Talent Development

It's 2010: Do You Know Where Your Employees/Clients/Members/Volunteers Are?

I continue to be amazed by how many organizations I work with who either do not use or do not value social media. They refer to social media as a tiresome chore (Do we really have to be on Facebook?) and consider it a silly pastime (I don't want my employees chatting with their friends all day!).

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Generation X

Thou Shall Not Eat And Tweet At The Same Time: Resolving Generational Conflicts

With four generations in the workplace, compromise is becoming a necessity. But that’s easier said than done. It’s so much easier to point fingers, place blame, and criticize, isn’t it?

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Generation X

Inauguration Symbolizes The End Of The Boomer Era

Generational change. A passing of the torch. A recent Associated Press article points out these terms have been thrown around with frequency as the moment nears for Barack Obama to take the oath of presidential office.

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Generation Y

Best Buy To Receive Award For Engaging X And Y At Work

On October 20, 2009, business leaders from across the country will be attending the RockStars@Work Conference in Minneapolis–the nation’s first generation-themed business conference—to learn how to relate to the next generation of workers and address the approaching talent gap in America’s workforce.

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Generation Y

American Chopper & Apprentice: The Next Generation In Family Business Makes Its Debut

If you’re wondering what the difference is between a Boomer’s approach to work and a Generation Xer’s approach to work, check out American Chopper: Senior vs. Junior on Discovery Channel.

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Generation Z

Generation Z, Brands, And Advertising

It’s time to move on from Gen Y. Gen Z are the new breed of consumers. They are in their teens, digital natives, lovers of advertising and most importantly, they know you are trying to sell them something.

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Generation X

Businesses Behaving Badly: No Class = No Talent

A friend of mine has been job hunting for the past six months. When we spoke on the phone recently she lamented about the horrible treatment employers have been doling out–from outright ignoring her to rescinding offers to sending her an email simply stating she didn’t get the job after she went through several rounds of interviews and was told at one of the interviews she would get the job.

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Generation Y

The Turnover Tsunami: Prepare For The Post-Recession Workforce

Four years ago, generous benefits and opportunities for advancement convinced many employees with advanced degrees to work for hot companies dubbed the best places to work — places like Starbucks, for example.

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Generation Y

Speak Like A Y: The Latest, Youngest Lingo

Each generation has its own language. The Baby Boomers introduced the concept of cool and numerous variations of the word including fab, far out, groovy, hangin', hip, keen-o, nifty, and neat.

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Generation X

Getting To Gen X: Associations Misled By Participation Research

Back in 2006, the William E. Smith Institute for Association Research released a report titled Generations and the Future of Association Participation. The report projected that the number of association members in the United States was expected to rise from 51 million in 2005 to about 55 million in 2015, with the percentage of all workers belonging to associations expected to climb from 28.3 percent to 28.9 percent in that interval.

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Generation X

2011 Means The Big 65 For Boomers

This is the year we’ve all been waiting for–the year that Baby Boomers will start turning 65.

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Generation Y

Live From Holland: Engaging The Next Generation

XYZ University has gone international! Sarah Sladek’s book, “The End of Membership As We Know It,” has been translated to Dutch and to celebrate, Sarah was in Holland this week. Sarah worked with Arko Sports Media as a keynote to the SportNext Event and presented workshops at VM Online. Sarah was also fortunate to meet with Berend Rubingh, chair of the Dutch Olympic Committee, as part of her travels.

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Generation Y

Welcome To Parenthood: Managing Gen Y

I’ve read about it and listened to business executives gripe about it, but I’ve never experienced it myself until now.Yes, Virginia. There really is a Helicopter Parent.Like an urban myth or a mystical creature out of a fairy tale, it’s hard to believe they really do exist. But now I know for certain they do.What are helicopter parents? They are the parents of Gen Ys who are actively involved in their children’s careers.

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Generation Y

Bring Out The Best In Y: A Limelight Workshop

They have been described as entitled, egotistical, demanding, driven to make a difference, and wanting the kind of life where every minute has meaning. This is Generation Y, and like it or not in two years they will comprise the majority of the American workforce.

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Talent Development

Is Talent The Same As Tenure?

Last week, I gave presentations to two very different audiences — technical recruiters and energy providers — yet, the questions were the same. Why worry about recruiting and retaining Generations X and Y? What could younger generations possibly offer that a more experienced, dedicated worker could not, especially in the midst of economc crisis?

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Generation Y

New Generations, New Opportunities

In the 1990s, REM wrote a popular song that exclaimed, “It’s the end of the world as we know it, and I feel fine!”I can’t think of a better explanation to describe what is happening in our world today.

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Generation Y

Newspapers Suffering From Generational Divide

As a former newspaper reporter and editor, I am observing with great interest the closure of city newspapers. Last week, the 146-year-old Seattle Post Intelligencer published its last print issue to become an exclusive on-line publisher–a move that left the Seattle Times the only major daily in that city.

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Membership

Agc Uses Viral Video To Reach Audience

I didn't get this posted in time for Halloween, but I wanted to share this very creative video created by Associated General Contractors to promote the association's upcoming conference. I have been working with this organization for the past few months, as AGC has observed an aging membership–and industry–and panic about the future has inevitably set in.

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Generation X

5 Ways To Engage And Disengage Generations X And Y

At XYZ University, our area of expertise is teaching organizations how to engage Generations X, Y, and Z; those skeptical, instant-gratification generations who were raised on technology and credit cards and are often labeled socially inept, entitled slackers.

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Generation Y

Move The 'Fame Junkies' Into Marketing With Employee-Generated Videos

Looking for an inexpensive and effective way to market to younger generations? (And in this economy, who isn’t?) Here’s an idea: employee-generated videos.

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Generation Y

The Art Of Leadership

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Generation Y

Fashion Faux Pas: Gen Y Takes Sexy To Work

A colleague of mine recently shared a story with me of a Gen Y employee who showed up for work in ‘Daisy Dukes’ – extremely short shorts. Outraged, she pulled the new hire into her office and asked her why she was wearing such inappropriate work attire. Confused and somewhat alarmed, the Gen Y shrugged her shoulders and said, “I thought you said we could dress casual on Fridays.”

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Generation Y

Boomers: Peace Or Pandemonium At Work?

Watch out below! Just when we thought the workplace was free from intolerance, today’s young professionals are bumping into age discrimination on their way to the top. For years we heard about women hitting their head on the metaphoric glass ceiling, never able to move higher on the ladder to success and get ahead of their male counterparts in the business world.

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Talent Development

Curb Your Employees' Enthusiasm To Leave

What would you do if you woke up tomorrow morning, walked into work, and half of the employees weren’t there? The desks were empty, the halls were quiet, and you find yourself panicking when you come to the realization that half the workforce has resigned.

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Membership

Change Or Die: Sarah Sladek's Interview With Vm Magazine In Holland

The following is an abridged version of an interview with XYZ University CEO Sarah Sladek that first appeared in VM magazine. Jeanne Hoogers, chief editor for VM magazine sat down with Sarah during her recent trip to the Netherlands where she “GenY-ed” the Dutch association professionals with an interactive presentation.

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Generation Y

Young And Rich: Successful Entrepreneurs In A Success-Driven Society

I presented at the American Bar Association Section of Litigation conference last week. The law field is one of those 'at risk' professions, as fewer young adults are pursuing law school today to become entrepreneurs or pursue careers in technology.Many of America's businesses aren't taking the generation gap in the workforce very seriously, expecting that young adults will eventually come to grips with reality and settle into jobs at reputable companies that offer stability and great benefits packages.

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Generation Y

Quick Glimpse At The Generation Gap In Your Office

Over the next five years, we will be a part of an unprecedented generation shift as Millennials outnumber Baby Boomers in the workforce. Today’s post is a quick visual glimpse at the breakdown of what your office may look like generation-wise in the next five years. Are you prepared for this shift?

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Generation X

Trust Me, Generations X And Y Don't Trust You

When Justin Bieber accepted the Milestone Award at the 2013 Billboard Awards, the crowd booed. This caught the musician by surprise since it is a fan-driven honor. Music critics believe Bieber’s recent antics–showing up late to concerts, threatening paparazzi, and alleged drug and alcohol use–have disappointed fans.

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Talent Development

Losing The Employment Game

Pretend for a moment you’ve been awarded a spot on a reality television show titled, Let’s Make a Hire. In a race against the clock, you are tasked with hiring skilled workers to complete a project on budget and on time.

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Generation Y

Downsizing With Dignity – And Perks!

In November 2008, the Victaulic pipe plant laid off nearly 260 workers. After the workers were laid off, the United Steelworkers union applied for special unemployment benefits from the U.S. Department of Labor, citing that the company produces products that also are imported from other countries. The benefits will give the workers up to two years of unemployment pay and re-training.Unfortunately, not every company is eligible for benefits that will allow laid-off workers access to re-training or other valuable perks. But perhaps it’s time for companies to consider offering ‘perk packages’ for laid-off workers.

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Membership

Three Strikes Against Paying Dues.

Last night, I listened to a speaker talking to a bunch of young graduates about how to get a job in the marketing world. At one point, he mentioned that his daughter was "a perfect Gen Y". She'd only been in her job for 6 months, and already thought she should be doing director-level work. The speaker told us that in a voice laced with sarcasm, and all the college seniors laughed on cue.When I heard that though, I wondered how many of them will still be laughing once they get out in the real world. I think a lot of them will change their minds pretty quickly.

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Membership

Effective Associations: Make Yours Hit The Mark

I’ve spent a lot of time working with association leaders and I’ve come to know what works and what doesn’t in order to grow membership and sustain organizations. The effective associations of 10 years ago are not the same today. Today, members are fast-paced, driven and they want information and access to exclusive information now.

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Generation Y

Is Democracy Dead?

It’s an election year, and regardless of which party line you prefer, here’s a little known fact: We have the oldest Congress in history right now. Equally, if not more alarming, is the fact that most elected officials in office now were in some type of office by the time they were 31.

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Generation Y

Great Leadership Requires Plenty Of Practice

The mass exodus of Baby Boomers from the workplace has already begun. According to the US Office of Personnel Management, between 2006 and 2010 Boomer retirement will have robbed American companies of nearly 290,000 full-time experienced employees.

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Membership

Is Your Association’s Culture Helping Or Hurting Member Recruitment And Retention?

As an association executive, you may have the power to change your association’s mission with the stroke of a pen. And you may have the ability to hire, fire, promote and demote people with relatively little effort.

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Generation Y

The 43% Change

What does it take to change the world? Governments? Businesses? Communities? Humanity is complex. We live in a world with endless beauty, yet there is also undeniable evil. War. Poverty. Pollution. Violence.

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Generation Y

Marketing To X And Y: How To Reach The Next Generation Of Consumers

How do you reach an audience that can choose their own music without listening to a commercial radio station, can block outsiders from their social circle—which revolves around cell phones and online networks like Facebook and MySpace—and only refer to newspapers when they need packing material to move on to their next venue?

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Generation Y

New Leaders Needed: Change Is Our Only Hope

Generations X and Y have a tainted view of authority. From President Richard Nixon to Enron, we have observed the fall of many of America's leaders. Will it ever stop? Here's just a sampling of what's happened in the past two months:

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Generation X

Generation X-Mas: Wonderful Life Falls From Favor

America has a new favorite Christmas movie. For the 11th year in a row, TBS aired its 24-hour Christmas Story movie marathon on December 24 and 25. TBS officials report most movie re-runs fade over time, but Christmas Story has continually risen in the ratings.

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Membership

Thank You To Our Advocates

This month, we’ve been talking about advocacy as it relates to membership associations, specifically from a political standpoint. Engaging your audiences at all levels is important in any organization and, in the spirit of advocacy and the month of Thanksgiving, we’d like to take a moment to thank all the wonderful advocates of XYZ University.

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Generation Y

The Dos And Don'ts Of Advertising To Generations X And Y

Generations X and Y are savvy and skeptical consumers. I know this as a fellow Xer and as the CEO of a generational marketing company. We are an elusive market and advertisers struggle desperately to reach us.Nevertheless, there are a few key tactics to keep in mind when selling a product or service to Xers and Ys: keep it real, be relevant, be creative, and tap into messages or ways to benefit us personally, professionally, and also benefit our communities.

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Generation X

The Boomers Have (Almost) Left The Building…Now What?

An estimated 78 million baby boomers are set to retire over the next five to 10 years—for nonprofits, chambers of commerce and other member-based associations, this statistic should be alarming. Why? Because the majority of associations are supported and sustained almost entirely by Baby Boomers. Which bodes the question: Who will you turn to when they’re gone?

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Membership

Creating Positive Culture For Your Association

Culture is not some inanimate object to scoff at or neglect. Fueled by economic decline, rapidly changing technology, and demographic shifts, culture is more powerful than ever.

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Membership

What The 2012 Pulse Report Means For Your Association

The 2012 Pulse report by Greenfield Services Inc. is out, a sort of crystal ball for associations. What does the report show and what does it mean for your association? Well, things are changing: the economy, technology, social media tools and paradigms for using them, generation shifts. Your members and stakeholders have new expectations, but your associations aren’t changing fast enough to keep up. We captured a snapshot of the report in the following infographic:

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Generation Y

Meaningful Work Means The Most During A Time Of Crisis

As employment markets tighten and employers expect great outcomes from their employees, some would say the economic crisis has spurred a return to a grateful, less demanding, and stabilized workforc –especially where young employees are concerned. So much for work-life balance, career pathing, and increasing vacation time. Those Xers and Ys should just be thankful they have a job. Right?

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Generation Y

Post 9-11 Generation Gets An Introduction To Osama Bin Laden

On September 11, 2001, shortly after I walked into work in downtown Minneapolis my boss made an annoucement: terrorists have attacked The World Trade Center in New York City. I clearly remember her telling us to leave work immediately.

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Generation Y

Start Marketing Like It's 2008

We’re eight years in to the 21st century. Can association marketing pros finally get with the times? If you’re frustrated with traditional marketing tactics that just don’t seem to resonate any longer, then consider these new strategies that target the importance of relationships with generations X and Y.Think for a moment how much the world has changed since the 1950s.

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Generation X

2008: The End Of The Boomer Reign

Since 2002, I have studied generational trends and I have long predicted the passage of the era when the Baby Boomers reigned supreme. In the course of my work, I’ve been accused of age discrimination, ignorance, arrogance, and simply being a Boomer-hater who just wants to push her elders out of the way.But as a former journalist, I’ve just been reporting the facts all the while and urging associations and businesses and non-profits to prepare for the exodus of our nation’s leaders.It’s just that people can get emotional about aging, and protective of tradition — all which is understandable.Nevertheless, I’ve been reading with great interest articles that predict 2008 will mark the final year of reign for the Baby Boomers, and it’s hard not to say ‘I told you so.’A CNN commentary by Marian Salzman, chief marketing officer and a partner at Porter Novelli Worldwide, states:

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Generation Y

Why Gen Y Isn't Interested In Advocacy

In our last post on advocacy in associations, we discussed the challenges you face. We were surprised that “Engaging the younger generation in the process” came in as low as number four in our 2012 Advocacy in Associations Survey. So now, in this post of the series, let’s talk specifically about advocacy and Gen Y.

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