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Associations Now

Ask the CEO: Entrepreneurs' Organization

ASSOCIATIONS NOW, May/June 2014 The A List

Summary: Entrepreneurs' Organization CEO Bob Strade explains the passion of entrepreneurs, the challenge of global growth, and the many ways his association keeps up with member needs and demands.

Gilberto Crombe: Where do you find passion in an organization made up entirely of entrepreneurs?

Bob Strade: There's passion everywhere I look. I'm surrounded by a global community of 10,000 innovators, as well as a world-class staff equipped to support those leaders. When you consider that entrepreneurs are the ones fueling the global recovery through innovation, job creation, and economic development, it's hard not to be inspired by and passionate about accomplishing our vision of building the world's most influential community of entrepreneurs.

EO is experiencing rapid global growth. What challenges does this create?

We'll need to continue to make sure we maximize our value locally, regionally, and globally. We'll need to ensure we're recruiting quality new members and giving them myriad reasons to retain their memberships, and we'll need to maintain and enhance our global brand—all while building the proper infrastructure to ensure we deliver the experience our members are seeking. As our products and services base, as well as our staff support, continue to expand to meet those increasing demands, it will require us to make sure we plan and execute extremely well.

How do you know if you are delivering outstanding results for members when EO has such a culturally diverse customer base?

We are constantly assessing our global membership's opinions. We've benchmarked our customer service practices against many of the world's best-in-class companies, such as Amazon, Disney, Ritz-Carlton, and Zappos. We send out a monthly "pulse" survey to a randomly selected one-twelfth of our members, seeking their input in a variety of areas. We also conduct an annual survey gauging their level of satisfaction in every area we measure. And we measure our members' satisfaction day in and day out through their ratings of events, executive-education programs, and other offerings geared toward personal and professional growth. Keeping our finger on the pulse of what our members are thinking and saying allows us to ensure we continue to meet and exceed member expectations.

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