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I too am a former STC member (but never a "senior" one) ...I did the local
board member thing, tried to bring in programs other than Framemaker demos,
submitted to local competitions and such. I found the calcified points of
view and the pathetic need for ego-stroking to be a time vacuum that had no
ROI (I make no claim that all of STC was like this, it was my experience,
yours will vary). I cannot speak to recent changes in the organization
since I dropped out 6 years ago (and others have already made very good
points about the new directions that are being attempted), but I can admit
surprise that a professional organization with this kind of longevity seems
to know nothing about marketing, either the organization or the profession.
I've been in the field for a long time, I post often, my job board resumes
have all the appropriate tech comm key words, and I was a dues paying
member. I've never gotten any kind of "we want you back" messages, nor have
I ever seen any attempts to target me as a new member from other related
organizations, social networking, subscriptions to publications... nothing.
Why is it any surprise that membership as a whole has dropped off? There's
no growth strategy and no effective plan in place to address it. But in fact
I find that many professional groups like STC really do not understand
strategy or effective business models, and by the time they figure it out,
it's usually too late.
STC would have value for me if it collaborated with other organizations in
related areas, or in areas that need and use our expertise, or actually
tried to serve the membership in a meaningful way... it's why I belong to
ACM, KMPro, ASTD, UPA and IWA... I can make real business contacts and
expand my repertoire to fields that are related. While there's lots of
value in networking with peers and the leading lights of this field, I can
get much of that from lists, conferences, and one-to-one contact. No
recruiter has ever asked about membership in STC, but several have noted the
others. I often direct recruiters to STC as a source for technical
communications professionals, and most are genuinely surprised to find that
there is a professional association.
I haven't seen any arguments yet that lead me to change my decision not to
return to STC... it's a good organization for many, but it just doesn't
float my boat or address my particular aspirations.
Connie P. Giordano
The Right Words
Communications & Information Design
"It's kind of fun to do the impossible." - Walt Disney
From: techwr-l-bounces+connie=therightwordz -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
[mailto:techwr-l-bounces+connie=therightwordz -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On
Behalf Of Writers Book Mall
Sent: Wednesday, November 14, 2007 12:38 PM
Subject: RE: Re-upping STC membership?
After having achieved "senior" status years ago by
dint of paying dues for a few years, I stopped
renewing. For potential employers/clients who might
conceivably be impressed by that sort of thing, I do
list on my resume that I was a senior member back in
whatever year it was. So far, no one has ever asked
about what the STC or senior membership in it is.
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