Association Membership: Keeping Gen Y Motivated and Engaged



The challenge inherent in keeping Gen Y engaged is that we’re easily distracted, we want to see progress from our daily efforts, and have a high need to stay in touch with those leading us.” ~ (p. 108)

Translation for Associations: GenY needs to know OFTEN why being a part of your association matters. They need to see measureable results after joining, and will want to be in touch with association executive and staff members. But once the rewards, benefits, and successes become the same thing over and over, without a clear direction for why or where it’s going, we’re out.

For Associations, the challenge, no matter what the age group, is motivating members to stay active and engaged. According to Jason Dorsey “motivation is a combination of logic, emotion, and current life priorities.” However, also recognize that what is personally motivating to one person may not be to another.

The important piece is that for Gen Y, the best motivation is personal. If you’re not sure what is personal to us, then you’ve got to ask us. We would love to give our input and opinions.

Many associations believe in rewards programs because it helps their members feel valued. Gen Y loves to be recognized, but those old-school plaques and stuffy ceremonies have got to go! Hosting a happy hour and a goofy slideshow is much more our style (and personal). This is also a great way for all generations to participate and be engaged. The best awards programs will inspire all 4 generations.

What are you doing to keep your members engaged and inspired?

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