2.4: Prehensile Tails to Problem Solving with Dave Bergeson

2.4: Prehensile Tails to Problem Solving with Dave Bergeson

Thoughtful, patient, and kind, Dave Bergeson reminds all of us how to find the strengths in our peers, figuring out each step, and be open to a new path from time to time. He takes lessons he learned doing anthropology field work in the jungles of Panama, Peru, and Costa Rica into insightful lessons on how to build relationships. Examining his approach to establishing trust and relationships in our industry, and in other facets of our lives.

Dave Bergeson, PhD CAE
Executive Director, Association of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Nurses

“Try to give people what they need, whether it’s kindness or patience. Everyone has something to contribute in some way. So looking for strengths is really important, and putting people in a position to use those strengths in a good way, I think that’s an important skill that can reap many benefits down the road.”

As vice president of client relations, Dave Bergeson provides strategic oversight and management of the Association Management Center’s (AMC) corporate relationship with their clients. AMC specializes in providing services to professional healthcare societies and trade organizations. After almost 20 years as an executive director, 10 with the Association of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Nurses (APHON), he certainly has the necessary experience to ensure that the client’s voice is heard and needs are met (and typically exceeded). Through getting to know volunteer leaders, increasing shared knowledge and best practices among clients, and facilitating collaboration, Dave works on behalf of AMC and with client executive directors to deserve, earn, and grow trust. As he puts it, “the key to success in association management—strong relationships—also is one of the benefits of success.”

Dave’s passion at AMC are the people he works with—volunteer leaders and AMC staff. He strongly believes in the unique strength that AMC’s culture brings to help managing and leading associations: “Howard Schultz from Starbucks said it well: ‘When you’re surrounded by people who share a passionate commitment around a common purpose, anything is possible.’ I’ve seen ‘anything’ many times here at AMC.” Dave is known for being a servant leader through his open-door policy, mentorship, and calm, confident, and clear communication with clients and staff.

Although he trained as a biological anthropologist, Dave rarely walks in jungles or observes monkeys anymore. Instead, Dave enjoys fishing, bird watching, and drinking wine—on really good days, all at the same time.

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