Idea No. 9 for keeping AAJA extraordinary:
I believe we should regularly invite members to tell us what they think of AAJA. Assuming that current members still find us worthwhile, I’d start with lapsed members who are still working journalists but for some reason have fallen off our rolls (we could remind them of the June 29 deadline to register for UNITY @ unityjournalists.org).
We could ask them why they left and what we could do to bring them back. Then move on to current members who aren’t all that involved and ask why, then survey members again at the end of the year to ask if they’re going to renew.
What does AAJA get out of it? I’ve spoken with some of these former members, and believe me, they’ll give you an earful. But they’ll also appreciate the fact that you asked, and maybe give you some constructive criticism for how to make AAJA better for everyone, regardless of membership status. Social media and sites like Survey Monkey make it much easier to do this, so we have no excuse. At the minimum, we should send out at least two membership surveys a year so everyone feels heard.