There are untold benefits of joining a professional organization, from professional development resources to premium perks.
Exclusive benefits are great—but one of the most valuable benefits of maintaining a membership to a professional organization is the utility they offer when developing your network.
Here’s a guide on how to leverage your membership in a professional organization to grow your professional network:
Join the Right Organization
First and foremost, joining the right organization is core to this strategy. With a fragmented market and lack of transparency and standardization, unearthing the best fit for you is often difficult.
BestOrgs was created to solve this exact problem. We curate, rank, and accredit the world’s best professional organizations, masterminds, and associations. Prospective members can search and filter through our database of organizations to find the most apt fit.
Tap Into Exclusive Resources
Many professional organizations, associations and communities offer exclusive materials to their members—research resources, private deals, whitepapers, polling data, access to technical infrastructure, and more.
These resources are not available to non-members, giving you a competitive advantage right out of the gate.
Attend Networking Events
Professional organizations of all stripes offer networking opportunities through in-person events and virtual webinars.
Regardless of your networking preference, the value offered at in-person events cannot be overstated. From conferences to more intimate gatherings, simply being in the same room as like-minded individuals with a common purpose allows for deeper, more meaningful connections.
Leverage Digital Networking Opportunities
For those with less time on their hands, membership communities offer platforms for digital networking without the noise: exclusive member portals where members can connect.
Some organizations also maintain groups on LinkedIn. Through transparent, public LinkedIn connections with other professionals in your industry, you can increase your content’s visibility and organic reach at no added cost.
Volunteer and Start Conversations
Depending on the nature of your association, volunteering and active participation in its initiatives will yield increased visibility and exposure—not to mention, further the cause you signed up for in the first place.
Be proactive and start conversations with members—this requires effort, but pays tremendous dividends later.
Active participation, and maximizing the access afforded to you by virtue of your membership in an organization, are essential to developing your professional network. While simply being a member in the right organization may yield opportunities, don’t just wait for them to come to you—take the initiative to create them yourself.