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Adjusting Budgets Impacted by Crisis

Tuesday, March 31, 2020   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Monica Stutzman
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April 1, 2020

Adjusting Budgets Impacted by Crisis
Bill Pawlucy, CAE and Bob Harris, CAE


These are the words of association executives panicked by the pandemic’s financial

  • “Our conference is canceled, accounting for a 50 percent loss of revenue; what
    do we do now?”
  • “We may lose 25 percent of our members and that will put our finances in the red
    for 2020 and beyond!”
  • “We won’t make it through this.”

Hopefully your association’s 2020 budget will hold tight and your value proposition is
strong enough to survive. If not, convene your finance committee to assess the

  1. First, realistically analyze the current budget and financial position of the
  2. Second, check on the liquidity of your reserves as you may need them to
    supplement operations.
  3. Third, project what programs will be cancelled or supported less by attendees
    and sponsors. Also, consider royalties as they may decline for lack of use.
  4. Fourth, understand the impact to dues. Membership revenue may depend on
    how you communicate value at this time of urgency.
  5. Fifth, develop a contingency budget covering the worst case, best case, and no
    change scenarios. No one knows the full impact of the pandemic.
  6. Sixth, do business differently and look for opportunities to repackage
    conferences, deliver information, and allow for virtual collaboration.


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