Maintaining an active membership in professional associations offers several benefits for individual members as well as companies. For example, on 5 February 2014 I posted an article about small business programs offered by various professional associations. The programs can help increase a company’s competitive posture, improve or expand core offerings, or build stronger relationships with business partners. For individuals professional associations offer cost effective continuing professional educations courses focused on specific and relevant topics encountered on a daily or weekly basis.
I maintain membership in several associations or industry groups such as Project Management Institute (PMI), Association of General Contractors (AGC), Society of American Military Engineers (SAME), and the National Association of Construction Auditors (NACA). All are incredibly beneficial memberships, but I find the real value in their annual conferences. Each conference provides a unique opportunity to spend one to three days of focused time on professional development and networking. While I am a member of several associations I can really only attend one or two conferences per year which means selecting the one that will get me the most bang for my buck. Most recently I attended the SAME Small Business Conference in Kansas City. It was a great conference and I was able to reconnect with other federal contracting professionals. However, of all of the conferences I have attended the past three NACA conferences have been the most valuable. The depth of material and the diverse group of attendees has proven this is the most useful and economical for our profession. Check out the conference details at https://thenaca.org/2015-conference/information/.