Thank you for visiting the National Star Route Mail Contractors Association website. The Association will be redeveloping this website over the next several months so that it can better serve its current members, prospective members, and partners. You can look forward to a new, redesigned, and dynamic website in early 2022. See you at the National Convention (August) and Southern Regional Meeting (November) until then. Exciting changes are ahead!

Thoughts from a CDS Member-Terry Stumpff

The View from a CDS Member
by Southern CDS Manager, Terry Stumpff
          It is that time of year again! I hope you all have had a safe and enjoyable summer and are planning to join me in attending the 82nd National Convention in Indianapolis. I recently attended the NSRMCA National Executive Board meeting in Sacramento, California. Let me tell you, it was one you should not have missed. The future of the Association and the working relationship with the USPS looks bright! The JBPIC meeting and the Board meeting reports alone are a great indicator of what we can expect at this year’s National Convention. 
            As you know, if you read this column in the July Star Carrier, I had some questions that I thought needed answering.  I'm very happy to report that I did get some satisfaction on the responses that I heard. And I did confirm that there is at least one person who reads my column. If you have not seen the Board meeting, below is a summary of the answers I received to some of my most pressing questions.
 
1.         What direction is the newly appointed Executive Director Greg Reed going to lead the Association?
 
           During the National Executive Board meeting, Mr. Reed presented a three-year plan that focused on four components of Associational success: communication, engagement, value proposition, and membership. He made clear that these components are critical to ensuring the Association remains a valuable resource for Postal Service contractors and an effective advocate of their interests. He also made clear that each of these components are interrelated. Accordingly, improved communication by the Association will increase member engagement. Increased member engagement will allow the Association to maximize the value proposition for NSRMCA membership. And finally, by maximizing the value proposition, the Association will both foster an evangelical membership and accelerated membership growth. This cycle will continue year after year enabling the Association to achieve new, and perhaps unprecedented, success in the future.
            Mr. Reed also made explicitly clear that failure to change the way the Association operates and to invest in these four components will be detrimental, if not fatal. The status quo is simply not a viable path forward.
 
2.         How is the Association going to establish better communication and partnership with the new PMG and his management team?
 
          The Postal Service and NSRMCA are already enjoying a renewed collaborative partnership as the Postal Service pursues the ambitious 10-year plan established by Postmaster General DeJoy. The Postal Service is increasingly looking to the NSRMCA to help guide reforms and to facilitate adoption of changes to Postal Service contracting practices. As evidenced by the JBPIC meeting, the collaborative partnership between the Postal Service and NSRCA is already bearing fruit and members should expect changes in the year ahead that will help support their businesses.
 
3.         How will the NSRMCA National Executive Board establish a better flow of communication with the members?
 
           The NSRMCA has already taken significant steps to adopt new technologies and practices to facilitate substantive, regular communication with Association members. In the months ahead, that communication will occur through a revamped Star Carrier, an entirely reimagined website, and virtual events held between the Association’s regularly scheduled events to ensure that members stay abreast of the latest developments.
 
4.         Is the current dues structure fair?  How can the Association improve the dues structure or method of payments?
 
            The need to address the Association’s dues structure is well-known and appreciated by the NSRMCA National Executive Board. President Sheehy called for the Dues and Membership Committee to start the work of drafting a reform proposal at the Board meeting and echoes that call in this Star Carrier. Mr. Reed is also committed to assisting the Association in devising a more equitable and affordable dues structure that will sufficiently support the Association’s work and spur membership growth.
5.         What steps will the Association take to retain and increase membership?
            The Association is pursuing a three-part strategy to retain and increase membership. First, the Association is revisiting its communication practices and tools so that it can facilitate regular dialogue with its members. Second, through that dialogue that Association is going to tailor its efforts to support members’ specific needs and interests. Finally, the Association is going to expand and deepen its relationship with vendors and third-party sponsors to ensure that all members are receiving practical business benefit.
 
           But we should not lose sight that it is up to all of us to help the Association achieve new success. For my part, I have submitted a proposal to By-Laws Committee Chairperson Suzan Porter to create standing committees for CDS, LDT and PNT business groups, which would require approval by two-thirds of the National Convention. The purpose of these committees would be to support the Association in educating members about best practices, attracting new members to the Association, building partnerships with suppliers to help support member businesses, and facilitating constructive conversations with the Postal Service. In addition to the this proposed amendment, I also suggested that all the Association business groups be given equal time in meetings for discussion and an equal voice in the Star Carrier.
            I walked away from the meeting feeling very positive, more positive about the future of the Association than I have ever felt. I like the direction that Mr. Reed has mapped out in his three-year plan for the Association and its members. I also felt that the Association’s leadership is open to new ideas on how to improve the Association so that it can achieve new success in the years ahead. 
            The bottom line is that this Association is only going to be as successful as the amount of input, time, and effort we commit. With this new era beginning in the Association, it is your time to step up and be an active participant.  Let your voice be heard by attending meetings, volunteering to participate on committees, running for a Board position, or even writing your own column.  As USPS Vice President of Transportation Strategy Pete Routsolias has repeatedly urged, we all need to be better, faster and smarter in how we conduct our business. Be part of the solution for a brighter tomorrow.          
            If you want to succeed in this industry, you cannot afford to miss this year’s National Convention in Indianapolis. By attending and participating, you will ensure that the Association is a valuable resource and effective advocate for your business for years to come.
I look forward to seeing you in Indy! If you have any questions or want to discuss your thoughts, please feel free to reach out to me at TStumpff@nsrmca.org.
Terry
Terry N. Stumpff
President
TNStumpff Enterprises, LLC