As an IFA member of long standing, I am concerned (and I am certainly not alone) that the IFA has become less of a support organization and more of a money-grubbing, marketing organization. It is rumored that member dues will soon increase yet again. The cost to IFA members to advertise on “our” www.franchise.org website has become an expensive proposition (at least comparable to that of other lead generation sites) and those members who choose not to opt for a “premium” listing are provided only tertiary exposure. What happened to the days when all received the same listing and exposure? Similarly, the annual IFA Convention is becoming exorbitant and appears to cater heavily to the same “insiders” in terms of exposure at the conference.
At the root of this is the IFA’s understandable interest in financial solvency. We all learned at the last conference, however, that the IFA’s financial house was in good shape after several years of modest solvency. So why the gouging that appears at every turn? I was told recently by a very knowledgeable IFA “insider” that the senior management of the IFA has been incentivized for increasing gross income/profits beyond budgeted amounts. I would love for Blue MauMau to find out if this is in fact true and, if so, how these “bonuses” are awarded, the total amount awarded and to whom. While I certainly don’t object to IFA management personnel earning a fair and competitive salary, it seems to me that bonuses based on unnecessarily high charges to its own membership are beyond the ken of a non-profit organization (I am assuming that the IFA is still a non-profit). It would also be interesting to know what the total remuneration package is for the senior executives at the IFA. I would assume that, as IFA members, we would be privy to knowing how much those that toil on our behalf make.
As one member, I would vastly prefer to see the IFA run as a standard non-profit association, catering to its member’s needs and meting out equal benefits to all its members.
Blue MauMau (and Janet Sparks in particular) is the only group with the guts to try to find out whether or not bonuses are awarded and, if so, to whom. Good luck and thanks in advance if you choose to pursue this.