Benefits Of Joining A Professional Association For Job Seekers
Job candidates sometimes join a professional association for the purpose of putting that association on their resumes or CVs, but there are a lot of other advantages to joining one than just putting it down on paper. Professional associations can connect you to others in your field. There’s nothing worse than being totally disconnected and isolated during a job search. Getting to know other people who work in the same field you do could ultimately make more of a difference for you than simply writing the organization’s name down in your resume.
When you join a professional association, you get to know more people, and sometimes those people know about job openings, maybe even job openings which aren’t being posted anywhere publicly. Employers often hope to discover job candidates through referrals instead of listings. It saves money and can result in better hires. If you’re connected to more people, there are more chances that someone will refer you for one of those positions, especially if you make your situation public.
You can also get advice from the people in the organization, and receive emotional support when you are struggling. And even when you aren’t, you can get advice which can help you with your current job. The guidance you receive could help you to become better at your career and also to look for opportunities for advancement and growth.
A lot of the advice you’ll receive from real human beings with experience is impossible to find in a textbook or a classroom setting, and can be more valuable than any book knowledge.
If you’re still in school, you may be able to bypass membership fees with some professional associations, which sometimes offer free membership to students who are still in college. The sooner you start getting advice and networking with others, the better. Doing so while you’re still in school and still have that safety net can help you to avoid pitfalls when it comes to your job search and other aspects of business. This can save you a lot of time, money and emotional difficulty later.
Students often miss part of the value of college, which is essentially social. It’s easy to get caught up in your studies and bury your nose in your textbook, but the most valuable knowledge and support usually comes in the form of other human beings who have walked the path that you’re headed down. Those people won’t find you, though, you have to take advantage of your situation to find them.
That’s one way in which the professional world is very different from school. In school, everything you need is given to you, including direction.
In real life, you have to find your own.
So if you’re still in college, start looking up professional associations you could potentially join, and see if there are any with discounted membership fees or free membership for students. And if you’ve already graduated, it’s never too late to start meeting others and networking to find a new job or a better opportunity.