The Future of Membership in a World Driven by Technology

Membership is about people; people sharing ideas to improve their personal and professional lives, opining on the latest issues, building personal and company brands, and yes, utilizing technology.

My goal here is to listen to the "world" on where membership fits in these fast changing times, and deliver the services needed to get people to "buy" into membership organizations.

Membership is deeper than community. Membership is more personal and takes more effort. It is built on trust.

Stop by often and find out what's happening in the world of Membership... Thank you.

Friday, January 8, 2010

People are the new IT…

I was in a very engaging conversation with one of my favorite people, a social media guru, ITSM expert, and overall great guy, Chris Dancy, and he made the statement, “people are the new IT” and followed up with “Membership is the new CMDB.” Now I admit we were both drinking (only kidding) when we went off discussing this “revelation” but as I thought more about it, this is a concept worth vetting (It’s Friday after all).

Years ago man controlled machine, and the promise of new technology was a more leisurely world for man at the expense of technology. But if we look at the world today, technology is running the world, and man is being run by technology. Technology is rampant, and it offers endless, new, and different opportunities to do business, connect with people, pay your bills, watch your movies, get your news, and it seems that there is very little we do in life that doesn’t involve technology. It can seem overwhelming, and it is. It seems we are constantly being distracted and driven by technology.

So how does this relate to membership? Membership is the new CMDB. For those of you that are not in technology, CMDB is the acronym for Configuration Management Data Base. It is a way for technology professionals to manage all of the technology in their organization. It is the “connective tissue” that provides the infrastructure needed for technology to work. Your PC is connected to a router, which connects to a server, which hosts the software you need to interface with your database, which connects to the web, which allows your customers to connect to your website and buy your product or service. In a nutshell it is every technology component needed to produce the outcome you or your business is engaged in and important for you to “succeed.”

Membership organizations have become the people CMDB that bring together the service management professional, software tester, developer, knitter, or any other group of people that have a common purpose, into connected “components.” The “components” that make up a successful software tester for example is; access to content that is relevant and validated, trainers that provide relevant training on skills needed to be a successful tester, conferences that provide sessions and speakers, and meetings that bring people together in local groups to discuss important topics to the testers. Membership provides and connects the “components” (people) with the technology, training, and people they need to be successful in their profession.

As I argued in a previous post, membership is where the cutting edge professionals gather to move an industry forward. Membership is disruptive to an industry and is where cutting edge ideas are developed, vetted, and implemented throughout the organizations of the membership. It is where all of the components of a successful industry are “housed.” Just like a CMDB, except today configuration items (CI’s) are people in one place working to provide a service by connecting people, ideas, and excellence.

A bit of a stretch? Maybe but I had an entire 6 pack to get through (just kidding)…

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