Relying on Associations

by WOHe

Do you rely on professional associations for support and guidance? This is a hot topic as of late. My students are researching professional associations for their final portfolio. They have to research what associations are available to them, are there local chapters, what kind of support do they provide, etc. This is part of their portfolio so that when they graduate and start their careers, they will know where to turn. I also noticed this discussion of professional associations on BrazenCareerist – a professional social networking site for Gen Y.

Professional associations are important. They provide support, guidance, continuing education, networking, seminars, etc.  Associations also provide recognition. By submitting to the various industry awards programs held by NAHB and AIA, you can get recognized by your peers – nationally. It also helps with marketing at the local level.

In my years with Residential Design + Build, I’ve seen some very staunch activists within trade associations, and others who take a more passive involvement. I’m sure the level of involvement relies on personalities, time and goals. I started out very passive within my professional association, then gradually became more involved, then back to being more passive. The change was reliant on my goals and time. But no matter how involved I was in the association, I still relied on it for support and education. And I can’t foresee a time when I won’t rely on a professional association for some kind of support.

How do professional associations help you? Share your thoughts by adding a comment, or send me an e-mail.

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