The Importance of Joining a Professional Organization
Gastronomic delights are not the only benefits of the dining room. To paraphrase Ben Franklin, more deals are brokered in the dining room than in the boardroom. Professional organizations are the dining room of small business owners. There are a variety of organizations to join, many with a casual agenda and low to medium membership fees.
The start up cost to join a professional organization is nominal and the benefits are extensive. Your biggest output is time, and it is well spent. Most organizations keep tight meeting schedules to accommodate busy members.
In return, members receive an excellent return on their investment.
FRATERNIZING. Acquaint yourself with other business owners who share similar frustrations and frequently offer clever solutions. Although your products and services may be worlds apart, business practices and customer satisfaction are just a few of many elements that you have in common with other owners. Sharing these issues can lead to camaraderie and alliances.
RECIPROCITY. Referrals from other members and to other members can help grow your business and strengthen your alliance within the organization.
EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS. These help you keep in touch with customer wants and needs by exposing you to the pulse of the community. We especially need to remain current on ever changing technological advances, and mini seminars are excellent for a quick overview of changes and helpful improvements.
COMMUNITY EVENTS. Volunteerism develops your network in the community and allows you to give back as you also create good will. It provides an opportunity to perpetuate name recognition both for you as an individual and your business.
NETWORKING. By joining professional organizations you will be able to network with other professionals in your industry. Especially important if you’re a business startup to establish new connections, you will be able to get your name out there while forming alliances with other businesses to help further your ventures, both now and in the future. Just make sure you stay in touch with everyone you meet so you’re networking means something.