Last week, ACG National Capital announced that it was implementing a new strategic plan and vision for the chapter. The goal of this new vision is to increase the chapter’s viability and vibrancy, while enabling it to better execute on its mission to, “Drive middle-market growth and deal flow in the region.”
As part of this new strategic vision, the chapter is making a number of changes to its programming and operations. The new strategic plan includes diversifying content to appeal to the many different industries represented in the National Capital Region, increasing the number of social and networking events, and working to improve communication with chapter members and the larger business community.
To learn more about the new strategic plan for the chapter, why it was necessary, and what ACG National Capital members can anticipate in the future, Corporate Growth, Capital Style sat down with the chapter’s President, Dr. Craig Reed.
Corporate Growth, Capital Style (CGCS): ACG National Capital just released a new strategic plan that you’ve said will be a new direction forward for the chapter. Why, in your opinion, did the chapter need a new direction and strategic plan? What led you to spearhead this effort?
Dr. Craig Reed: Over the last year, the ACG National Capital chapter completed its OneACG merger and found itself returning to in-person events after successfully maintaining membership and virtual and hybrid programming momentum throughout the pandemic.
This seemed like a point of inflection and the perfect time to take stock of where we were and where we could go as a chapter.
CGCS: Part of this new strategic plan includes an effort to appeal to new industries and markets and increase membership from those industries. What different markets and industries are you looking to appeal to? How is the chapter planning to drive membership from these industries?
Dr. Craig Reed: Our Strategic Planning Committee looked at the membership comprising other regional associations, as well as the range of industries executing substantial deal flow in our area, and we concluded that ACG National Capital was under-represented across this broader range of industries.
“While we will continue to offer the types of events we have in the past, we will also offer meetings at different times of the day, as well as smaller member-only VIP gatherings, expanded corporate events, and special networking-only social events that emphasize relationship building between members.” – Dr. Craig Reed
By diversifying the content and programming to appeal to dealmakers in industries such as technology, media, telecom, healthcare, and real estate, the chapter will no longer be missing out on potential members and sponsors that could enrich its vitality.
CGCS: Another directive in the strategic plan is to increase the number of social and networking events for members. What different types of events are you looking to introduce? Why would these be beneficial for members?
Dr. Craig Reed: Our chapter has always done a great job with events, including our Monthly Meetings, Corporate Roundtables, our annual Corporate Growth Awards Gala, and our annual ACG Golf Tournament, among others.
We’re looking to expand the range of opportunities for our current and prospective members to network with each other. We want to give them more opportunities to learn from each other and experts in the field. We’re also looking to broaden opportunities for our sponsors to get visibility for their firms.
As we reach out to a wider range of professionals and an expanded demographic, we want to appeal to different interests and preferences. While we will continue to offer the types of events we have in the past, we will also offer meetings at different times of the day, as well as smaller member-only VIP gatherings, expanded corporate events, and special networking-only social events that emphasize relationship-building between members.
“…ACG National Capital and other regional chapters have had the opportunity to merge with ACG headquarters to form a more unified ACG organization. This gives our chapter greater access to back-office support and marketing, national sponsorships, additional programming, and other resources that will benefit our chapter members…” – Dr. Craig Reed
CGCS: There are a number of directives in the new strategic plan to expand the participation and programming in the chapter’s NextGen program. Why is this important for the chapter and its future? How do you plan to accomplish this?
Dr. Craig Reed: Our chapter began a NextGen program several years ago that got off to a great start but lost momentum during the pandemic. The strategic plan reenergizes the NextGen program, providing great opportunities for up-and-coming dealmakers in our region to network with their dealmaking peers and more senior dealmakers in the area.
This program benefits the participants and benefits their host organizations, by providing a great development opportunity for their future leaders. And, clearly, it benefits our chapter by creating an outstanding pipeline of future engaged ACG members.
CGCS: When all of these changes are implemented and the strategic plan is being executed, how will it better enable the chapter to accomplish its mission of, “Driving middle market growth and deal flow?”
Dr. Craig Reed: The new strategic plan sets a vision and future emphasis for the chapter that ultimately will be implemented through our committees–membership, sponsorship, programs, etc.
Middle market growth and deal flow is already thriving, but this strategic plan provides expanded opportunities for ACG member companies to participate in, and benefit from it by creating greater visibility and connectivity between dealmakers across the region.
CGCS: In recent remarks that you made to the attendees at the Corporate Growth Awards, you mentioned that the chapter had undertaken a merger with ACG’s National/Global organization. What does this mean? How can and will this impact the chapter and its membership? Will members and sponsors see noticeable changes in the chapter and how it operates?
Dr. Craig Reed: ACG traditionally has been a federation of independent regional chapters across the U.S. and world that share a common mission and name, but which heretofore have operated as standalone entities.
“By diversifying the content and programming to appeal to dealmakers in industries such as technology, media, telecom, healthcare, and real estate, the chapter will no longer be missing out on potential members and sponsors that could enrich its vitality.” – Dr. Craig Reed
Under the OneACG initiative spearheaded by ACG’s headquarters last year, ACG National Capital and other regional chapters have had the opportunity to merge with ACG headquarters to form a more unified ACG organization. This gives our chapter greater access to back-office support and marketing, national sponsorships, additional programming, and other resources that will benefit our chapter members, while permitting us to preserve those features and events that make our chapter unique.
The effects of this merger will be transparent to most of our members, but they will benefit from the additional capabilities and resources we will have access to.
ACG National Capital was one of several major chapters across the country to be the first to sign on to this merger and we are already beginning to see the benefits our members are receiving.