If engaging with an industry association in such a way that requires a high level of commitment is not for you, here are a few roles that can require a lower level of commitment:
- Guest. Also known affectionately as a “non-member,” most association meetings and events are open to everyone. Attending an industry association event before you join the association is a great way to “kick the tires” to assess if this is the group for you.
- Member. Once you join the association, you become eligible for the benefits that come with membership, including reduced registration prices for events and access to industry resources that are not open to non-members.
- Writer/blogger. Most industry associations have a website, a newsletter, and a blog. If attending a meeting is not possible for you, perhaps providing content for an industry publication is an alternative. Even if you cannot attend every meeting, you can identify a topic of interest to the membership for publication. Industry associations are always seeking content for their newsletters, and your submission will be welcomed.
- Workshop/webinar/tele-class facilitator, speaker, or panelist. Whether you join your industry association or not, presenting or participating on a panel is a good way to engage with your industry. Associations are always looking for speakers who will elevate the education level of their members.
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