In this episode, we give you five tips you can use to get the most out of your professional association membership. Whether you’re building a business or career, professional associations offer opportunities that can accelerate your success. But if you are not actively and effectively involved in this organization, these opportunities may pass you by.
Here are the main points discussed 5 Tips for Getting the Most Out of Professional Associations:
1. Choose the best professional associations to join
Don’t just join an association for the sake of joining it. Think about all the professionals you work with—engineers, architects, developers, etc. — and choose associations that will allow you to connect with such professionals.
2. Build relationships and grow your community
In the world of engineering, it’s important to build relationships with other engineering and consulting professionals, as your firm will often collaborate on projects with other firms or government organizations, which can enhance that experience. As engineers advance in their careers, most are asked to lead business development activities. Your network will determine your ability to drive business for your firm, which is usually directly related to your promotion.
3. To study
Every professional association has resources available to you as a member. Take the time to find out what they are and what specific programs they offer. Some associations are good at overwhelming you with everything they have once you join. Chances are, you might forget or miss out on new offers they introduce over time. Contact someone in member services or check the association’s website to see what they have to offer.
Bonus Tip: When you see news about a potential or existing client, share it with your association via email, social media, or phone. The association will distribute the information through its website, articles, etc. and you will receive credit from your client for sharing the information.
4. Share with others
Professional associations can have individual members or companies. If you are a member or primary contact, see who else in your organization can benefit from the resources the association offers. Take full advantage of your membership by involving all departments in your company when it makes sense. Your training manager, security manager, marketing manager and salespeople will thank you and the value of your membership will increase significantly.
5. Prepare for conferences and conventions in advance
For many professional association members, the annual conference or convention can be the pinnacle of networking opportunities. Strategic planning can improve your success in these big meetings. Many conferences publish a list of participants and speakers in advance. Browse these lists and decide in advance who you want to meet or spend time with. You can view the coffee break schedule and email the people you’d like to meet to schedule a time. Telling someone you follow their work or that you have something in common gives you a much better chance of success than just hoping you run into the right people.
More in this episode…
About the host: Jared M. Green, PE, D.G.EF. ASCE
Jared, a native of Southwest Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, graduated from Syracuse University College of Engineering in 2001 with a BS in Civil Engineering. He later earned a master’s degree in civil engineering (geotechnical focus) from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2002. In 2003, he joined Langan’s New York office. He has since become the Director/Vice President and co-owner of this international land management consulting firm. After 15 years of LanganJared has moved to the Philadelphia office and co-leads the geotechnical practice in that office.
Jared is a consultant and team leader who also enjoys mentoring young engineers and first-generation college students. He has been instrumental in increasing the number of pre-college students interested in STEAM majors and fields. He strives to make complex engineering topics relatable and understandable to newcomers and people completely new to engineering. Jared and his family currently reside in Flemington, New Jersey. He and his wife have three energetic, inquisitive and stunning children. You can contact Jared here.
Books mentioned in this episode
This episode is brought to you by Tensar
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Please leave your comments or questions in the section below about what you are doing to get the most out of your professional associations.
to your success,
Jared M. Green, PE, D.GE, F.ASCE
Host of the Geotechnical Engineering podcast