Ten Advantages Of Joining A Professional Association
Updated: Sep 28, 2021
I am not a great networker. I find the whole process of networking uncomfortable and intimidating at times. It is difficult for me to self-promote, and that is something I have always found difficult, but many people relish the idea of networking and self-promotion.
My lack of self-promotion got me thinking about associations and how important they can be for the individual and the organisation, and here are my ten reasons why I should join a professional association.
Networking. Instead of having to talk about myself or my achievements, which I cringe at, I can comfortably talk about my organisation and all that we have achieved, which in turn makes building a network easier. More importantly, the network is already in place and you are in the company of like-minded individuals who, on the whole, are openly there to further their business or professional interests. Also, the regular meetings encourage me to be more focussed on the networking and the building of relationships.
Ideas Bank. Moving on from the networking side, when there are many people together in similar professions, the talk naturally comes round to furthering business and aiding that business development. This is where the ideas bank is great for me and others. We are able to share ideas and hear about successes and failures when people tried to innovate. We can learn form another person’s mistakes.
Information. As people talk and share, we can gather more information about what is new in the industry. As I always like to say, there is always someone more intelligent than myself in a room, and these people are usually great fonts of information. They have done the research, so I don’t have to.
Training & Education. We don’t know everything about our industry, and I am always looking to further my training, and associations again are great places to access personal and professional development skills and education. Someone will, most probably, have done a similar course before me and can offer pointers on its effectiveness, usefulness and value.
Certification. From a business perspective, we can stay ahead of the pack in being compliant with new laws and regulations before the herd. The larger the association, the more notice one may have in becoming compliant with law changes. The association can also assist in accessing certification requirements.
Best Practice. Sometimes, we forget to apply best practice in our organisation, because it it is not broken, then we don’t need to fix it, but that is not the best approach. Just because dad did it that way doesn’t mean it is the best way. Putting best practices to the fore can save time and money in the long run, which is what every business leader is hoping to achieve.
Relationships. Together we are stronger. It’s an old adage, but true today more than ever. Through strong relationships, businesses and communities have been able to weather the Covid-19 storm and we have come through with a clearer focus and a more robust will to succeed. Without relationships, we would have suffered a lot more. Associations allow us an opportunity to build and strengthen relationships.
Community Investment. There is no better way to improve your organisation, than by reaching out into your local community. The local community is where you get your workforce, your suppliers and your customers, so through working with the association, you can reach out into your locale more effectively and whole-heartedly. Maybe, you belong to a small business association, who provide fund-raisers for the local schools, or a larger association which puts on fairs, where you can present your organisation to a wider, more relevant audience.
Influencing. By being part of a larger association, as I said earlier about strength in numbers, you can have a voice to effect policy in your local area, to better the interests of the local community.
Potential Cost Savings. Through the preceding points, you can, hopefully, make your organisation more productive, more efficient and more profitable.
Maybe now is the time for you to join an association to help you, and your organisation become more visible in your local area, giving you more opportunities to grow.
So, why are you waiting? Join an association today.