Friday, February 26, 2010

Ten Reasons to Join a Professional Organization

fwPASS - AJ Definition from Wikipedia:

A professional association (also called a professional body, professional organization, or professional society) is a non-profit organization seeking to further a particular profession, the interests of individuals engaged in that profession, and the public interest.

Reasons to join one:

  1. Meet great like-minded people!
  2. Opportunity to showcase your experience through peer to peer discussions or public speaking.
  3. Bullet item on your resume
  4. See what opportunities and challenges are in the industry[ies]
  5. Access to experts in the field – speakers, other members, sponsors
  6. SWAG – discounts or free books, magazines, access to webinars, e-learning, certification exam vouchers
  7. References other than your sister’s husband
  8. Free or almost free training - most of the organizations have meetings focused on educational content
  9. Meet your competition
  10. Exclusive or early notification of job opportunities

As the President of a professional organization, fwPASS, I often hear about job opportunities directly from industry leaders and recruiters looking for their next technical Rock-star or leader. Note: this is not an invitation for head-hunters to spam me. They know that most of the people that regularly attend or participate in our meetings are passionate about their craft and are interested in staying at the front of the pack. In this economy, most organizations can afford to hold out for the best. Position yourself to be one of them!

Organizations that I am involved in or have had associations with:

A more complete list of Professional Associations

Find a local chapter and get involved. If you don’t have any chapters in your area, there is a growing trend toward virtual chapters that utilize technologies like Microsoft Live Meeting and GoToMeeting.


  1. Dean: I am involved with some of the editorial content of a web-site maintained by Chapter 248 of SME, I would like to post your comment and give you attribution for it. Would this be OK with you? What SME chapter are you associated with? At SME 248 we are involved in several large scale projects to collaborate with other technical groups in networking. see below:

    Dave Davidson - SME Chapter 248

  2. Thanks Dave. You folks look like you are doing great work! Feel free to link or re-post. It is amazing how much benefit members can get being affiliated with a professional org.

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