The IPI and its Survey


The IPI and its Survey

The IPI has published a survey to its members asking what they think about the future and existing programs of the organization. I think its great, as far as it goes. As is typically the case with these organizations, the manufacturing, vending, and consulting components of our industry are completely left off the list of questions. Although more vendors typically show up at the IPI show than attendees, and we generate tons of money for the organization, we are left to fend for ourselves when it comes to the organization itself.

Although the IPI seems to want to know what we think about its logo and whether or not we feel the board properly represents us, and whether or not the list of members and the magazine are useful, and whether or not the web site should be expanded, there is little about whether or not the members would like to make the organization more inclusive. Whether or not it should "reach out" to other constituencies (like vendors, transportation, private operators).

The questionnaire asks whether or not the IPI should expand into international activities, but not about expanding its membership to its existing constituencies. One member joked to me at the last convention that there are more colleges and universities in Pennsylvania than there are higher ed members of the IPI. That may have been a slight exaggeration, but not much. (there are 205, by my count, higher ed members of the IPI — there are 3500 colleges and Universities in the US).  Wanna talk cities — 275 out of 4000 cities in the US with more than 10,000 population. — Hospitals — lets not go there.

Its concerned about the effectiveness of the magazine, the convention, the Buyer’s Guide, the CAPP program and the like, but it dodges critical issues about outreach to other organizations (dare I say NPA, BOMA, IREM, AHA, AIA, ITS, etc etc etc).

It wants to know if the membership should go to a dues schedule based on the size of the operation (the University of Washington would pay more than say, Dartmouth)…It is happy to ask the number of times the member has changed jobs in the past five years, but has missed the real question or group of questions — What does the IPI have to do to become more responsive to all its members and make it so people will see the organization as more than a place where they can get a line item on their resume.

IPI members have told me that if the org is to grow, it needs to provide a reason for people to join.

The IPI needs to look at the world view, not its stationery.

Just my two cents.


John Van Horn

John Van Horn

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