Familiar Faces, New Places – and Judge For Yourself

I love that little thrill I get when I recognize a face from the online community in a new or different place.

Picture of Scott HanselmanI got that little thrill when I saw Scott Hanselman grinning back at me from the latest e-mail newsletter from the ADA. I love Scott.  He’s a pretty smart dude. He also gave us “The Airplane Analogy“, which is a favorite of mine.  Plus, with a name like “Scott”, what’s not to love?

He’s funny too.  From the newsletter – “They say diabetics die of diabetes. As a well-controlled type 1 diabetic on a pump, my goal is to live long and eventually get hit by an ice cream truck.”

This e-mail update from the ADA was promoting the “Step Out: Walk to Fight Diabetes” and it got me thinking about the last couple of interactions I have had with the ADA.

For as long as I can remember I have held a belief that the ADA was all about type 2 diabetes and that they have nothing useful to offer me as a person living with type 1 diabetes.

My recent Tour de Cure ride was an incredible experience for me, especially the Red Rider aspect of the whole weekend.  I don’t think the ride would have been as powerful for me if it hadn’t been for the Red Riders, which was started by someone with type 1 diabetes for people with diabetes.  It was a very powerful and emotional experience for me, and I gained a lot from it.

My next experience with them revolves around the last Roche summit.  The ADA brought in a panel of big hitters to listen to us tell them how they are not serving us.  They apologized, they listened, they asked questions.  We’ll see where it goes from here.

My point with these experiences is that my opinion of the ADA is changing.  I encourage you to not judge them by stories you hear, but rather use your personal experience.  If you have a bad experience with them, share your feedback, with them and with us.

In today’s world of blogging and tweeting and facebook, companies can’t afford bad experiences and are (hopefully) quick to engage and fix bad situations.  If we want these places to help us, we need to share our thoughts with them.  They need to listen to the people they are trying to support.

We need to work together.

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9 thoughts on “Familiar Faces, New Places – and Judge For Yourself

  1. It’s nice when you feel like organizations are listening to you and making improvements, especially when you are so personally invested in the cause. I hope the ADA continues to impress.

  2. I was just thinking about this recently, when finding myself unable to establish any meaningful connection to my local ADA in Indy except for the Twitter connection with someone… Yet, no real answers or communication of substance. Then today, we got an email from Roche saying that the ADA plans to followup and it listed a specific contact person’s name. This reassured me somewhat, but just enough to not fall of the wagon and go all anti-ADA again – as I’ve largely been in life. There’s still hope, but the ball is in their court…

  3. I was thinking about this the other day so this post is a good final push for me. I stopped my membership to the ADA long ago and frankly, shouldn’t all diabetics get a freaking free pass to the DIABETES ASSOCIATION? Hell, we don’t have much choice but to be in the D club right?
    Anyway, with the Roche thing I felt like I should join up and give them a chance again.
    But Bernard has a good point. We should have at least got a thank you email or a post card or something right? Geesh.

  4. as to what bernard said.thats what is scary!
    this whole thing starting with roche.
    what if it was just a pr move?how much damage can this do to legit players if there are any.
    as you said scott compaines cant afford a bad expierence. well ada.was it just another one night stand?plenty of us are/have gone to bat for you.
    pr flacks can put out stuff as fast as it can be written
    whats the deal?did you forget your new friends already?

  5. I’m glad you’re feeling more support from the ADA. It’s a bit ironic, because I’ve kinda felt that the ADA has seen me as a donation source than as a client. (That’s almost certainly unfair, because I never did anything more with my membership than flip through the magazine. They do send a lot of donation solicitations, though.)

  6. Agreed (about working together).
    I’d hoped we’d have heard something (anything) from the ADA by now. Even just an acknowledgment that the conversation during the summit actually happened. I’m disappointed by the silence. Hopefully this won’t continue.
    In the meantime, my fund-raising efforts – none this year 🙁 – are still focused on Dr. Faustman’s research.