Hooked on Non-profits: From Fashion to Association Management

By Mallory Robinson, Account Associate

A year ago, I transitioned from the fashion industry to the association world. In some ways, it is hard to believe that it has only been a year and in other ways I feel like I have been doing this for a long time.

I had never heard of association management before I came to IMI. A board of directors was nothing more than a vague business term I’d heard of previously in business classes when talking about stocks and IPO.

Little did I know how much I would love what I am doing and how my past work experience would have prepared me for this career.

Using My Skills in New Ways

I have worked for a lingerie designer, a network service provider, a women’s activewear startup and an up and coming fashion lifestyle brand. I learned valuable skills at each of these positions that prepared me for what I am doing now. I’ve also had a lot of on the job training that no amount of studying or schooling would be able to replace.

In an association management company (AMC), it is all hands on deck. Each staff member contributes from the wealth of their experience and all of our clients benefit.

When professionals come together to form an association for their industry, they are busy working in their careers. They don’t have the time or the means to do all of the behind the scenes work that an AMC provides. I’m using my experience to help that non-profit succeed.

Invested in Success

Now, I am attached to the outcome. We can easily see how our diligent efforts are turning into measurable success for the non-profits – and their success is our success. While the association world can be stressful, my job is exciting and changes enough that I don’t get bored.

I spend months planning a conference that lasts only a couple of days, but being a part of the end result is incredible.

Making a Difference

My work before seemed just like a job. For the first time, I feel like I am able to make a difference.

The most recent conference I planned, we had a session about Accessibility. Through that conference session, we’re helping companies all over the world make their websites and digital products accessible to those with disabilities. Talk about impact!

Associations provide education and best practices to the industries that they represent which in turn leads to better products and services for consumers. It’s hard not to get excited about being an integral part of making the world a better place!

Wondering how an AMC could support your non-profit? Contact us today!

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