dedicated to developing a specialized body of knowledge enabling MBOs to deliver more meaningful and transformative experiences to their members.

Home of the Relation-centered Management Model
an approach that enables your association become a magnet
for member engagement rather than a competing voice

Our mission: Develop a more comprehensive principles-based, systems-oriented
body of knowledge for the association community

Research Findings Offer Information Revealing
Why Existing Strategies Fail to Produce Desired Results

a decade of research offers unparalleled insights
Special Interest Society:
How Membership-based Organizations Shape America

For over 200 years, membership-based organizations (MBOs) have played a significant role in advancing information and knowledge in every sector of our society.  And have played a key role in enriching their members' personal and professional lives...and that of the general public.

Yet, our understanding of their existence, role, and contributions remain largely unnoticed.

By analyzing over 400 of their published histories, Special Interest Society breaks new ground by revealing why these organizations emerge as well as what they do to shape every profession, trade and personal avocation in our society.

The research reveals why MBOs continue to experience many of the same challenges as their founders - like member engagement; and what can be done to generate more meaningful and transformative experiences for their members.

Copies are available from the Lexington Press. Click here to order your copy. Use LEX30AUTH15 to enjoy a 30% discount. 

2016 IREM Regional Leadership Meeting
Engagement Clinic
Reference Materials

Membership based Orgs as Unique Institutions.pdf

IREM RCM Chapter Assessment.pdf

What It Means to Be A Member Orientation Booklet.pdf

Recruitment Script Sample.pdf

IREM Supercharge Your Career Handout.pdf

Three Questions to Recruit Volunteers Tip Card.pdf


Tools Designed to Build Member Engagement.....

Members often need help to build the strong social bonds necessary to establish meaningful and productive relationships. The following have been used successfully to accomplish that end. Contact us to explore ways to adapt it for use in your organization.

Secrets to Identifying Future Leaders Tip Card

Strategic Board Development: Checklist for Planning
An Effective Orientation

Relation-centered Member Orientation
w/Facilitator's Guide

Strategies That Make Membership a Priority
in Your Association

Additional options....


Press Releases 

Press Release: Columbia College Alumnus Authors Groundbreaking Book

Press Release: University of Michigan Alumnus Authors Groundbreaking Book

Press Release: Penn State Professor Emeritus and Alumnus Author Groundbreaking Book

Press Release: University of Scranton Alumnus Authors Groundbreaking Book



an introduction to the Melos Institute's
theoretical & functional frameworks
Indeed Relevant Series:
3 Working Papers Tell Why & How
Membership-based Organizations
Can Increase Effectiveness

These working papers, generated from one of Melos' early research initiatives, offer a different way of thinking about MBOs.

They provide critical insight why these distinctive organizations differ from for-profit and other nonprofit institutions.

They explain why existing management techniques fail to deliver desired results. And suggest  why - in light of the findings revealed in Special Interest Society - a new approach for understanding MBOs is needed. It begins with the realization that since these organizations are different, a framework must be established that more effectively defines their existence, emergence and development.

Special Interest Society introduces a theoretical framework. These papers further the discussion by offering a complementary functional framework for their operations. And as a result introduces a new paradigm that will positively impact member engagement: the relation-centered management model.

Click here to download all 3 working papers.

Click here to download Melos' theoretical framework.

Click here to download Melos' functional framework.

Click here to download definitions of Relation-centered Management functions



Additional Reading and Tools........
Visit our library for information, knowledge, and tools for your reference; or to share with colleagues. Most recent include:
(second in a series)

A New Way to Think About Leadership Development
(first in a series)

One Simple Way to Make Your Professional Development Efforts More Memorable

Through a Members Eyes: Making Conferences
More Than Singular Events

Cracking the Code How History Can Help Shape 21st Century Associations

What Do I Do? What I Do Shapes America

Additional options.......



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