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Sailors’ Survival Story to Inspire Association Professionals | ORGPRO 2019

Association Impact
July 15, 2019 10:00 AM


A story of young sailors who survived five days in shark-infested seas will help inspire association leaders at Michigan Society of Association Executive’s annual ORGPRO conference July 17-19 at Crystal Mountain Resort in Thompsonville, Michigan. 

Doug Stanton, author of the book “In Harm’s Way”, is a keynote speaker who will describe the survival of 316 sailors after the sinking of the USS Indianapolis.

Paperback In Harm's Way: The Sinking of the U.S.S. Indianapolis and the Extraordinary Story of Its Survivors Book

“Stanton will inspire association professionals by relating the challenges they face on the job to the sailors’ endurance during a life-threatening situation,” says Kelly Turner, president and CEO of MSAE.  “His presentation will allow association professionals to explore how they can be a “lifeline” to others in their workplace, family and community.”

The conference attracts 200 or more association professionals and also features keynote speaker Gayathri Kher, co-founder and president of fusionSPAN, who will speak on evolving technology in the association industry and how to turn challenges into new opportunities to serve customers.

The conference also features a panel of former MSAE Diamond Award winners describing how to increase member engagement and satisfaction.  Panel members include association professionals from the Michigan Restaurant and Lodging Association, Traverse City Tourism, the Michigan State Medical Society, Michigan Municipal League and others.

ORGPRO19For more information, or to register to attend ORGPRO, visit https://www.msae.org/ORGPRO1/www.misgmp.org.

MSAE is a professional organization of more than 1,650 members, which works to advance knowledge in the association industry.

Again, Staton will be sharing the Closing Keynote: Professional Lifelines for Change
Friday, July 19 | 12:00 - 1:00pm

How can you be a “lifeline" to others within our families, communities, and workplaces, and work with others to create change both professional and personal? We’ll discuss in particular Doug’s book "In Harm’s Way," about the sinking of the USS Indianapolis in July, 1945, wherein the young sailors learned the difference between "giving up" and “surrendering" to circumstance. We’ll discuss the paradox that many of these men experienced when, by giving up their sense of self for the greater good of the group, they apprehended an authentic, enduring sense of self.

Learning Objectives:
1. Discuss the powerful effect of decentralized decision-making in fast evolving environments.
2. Demonstrate the importance of cross-training across disciplines, leading to higher situational awareness.
3. Identify the paradox that smaller but highly-adaptable entities can defeat larger, better-equipped entities.
4. Explain the value of teaching people to fail, so that they can succeed.
5. Discuss power of listening and storytelling to cohere otherwise chaotic or incongruent ideas and events as one story— one mission— that people can live and work by.


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Donna Oser, CAE hosts Association Impact, which looks into what some of Michigan’s top professional and industry groups are doing to make a positive impact for their members and for the state of Michigan. As part of MSAE, Association Impact works with all associations in Michigan.

9:00 AM every Thursday
Replay: 3:00 PM, 9:00 PM, 3:00 AM. Also a big thank-you to 2011-2018 original host Cheryl Ronk, CMP CAE and check out the 2015-2018 blogs for her MSAE content, and her successor before Donna, Taylor Benavente!