Why Professional Organizations Are Worth Joining
Many recent graduates are foregoing professional organizations, as they no longer see joining associations as a requirement for success in their fields.
However, even in the modern business era, the advantages offered by professional organizations are considerable and well worth the yearly membership fees — particularly for attorneys and accountants.
Here are five reasons recent graduates in the legal or accounting fields should consider joining a professional organization.
As many young professionals discover, trying to find a job fresh out of college can be discouraging; the market is overcrowded, it is difficult to stand out from your competition and companies simply aren’t offering that much in the way of decent entry-level positions.
Many professional organizations, such as the American Academy of Attorney-CPAs, offer career resources to help members find new positions, which can be an excellent opportunity since you already have your foot in the door as a member of the Academy.
Professional organizations typically offer numerous occasions throughout the year to network with peers in your respective field. From local chapter events to annual summits, many of these conferences are designed as a way for members to connect with local and national industry leaders.
These events allow you to easily acquire new contacts, which will expand your professional network and potentially lead to future referral and employment opportunities.
One of the greatest benefits for recent college graduates offered by professional organizations is the ability to be mentored by an experienced attorney or accountant in the field. This offers the ability to shadow and learn the trade from someone who has been in the industry for years.
You are also able to improve your networking by incorporating your mentor’s connections into your own, which helps give a boost as you attempt to grow your own professional network from the ground up.
Attorneys and CPAs have annual educational requirements to maintain their license to practice, and professional organizations for these industries usually offer the ability to obtain your yearly credits as a membership benefit.
This greatly simplifies the task of keeping up with continuing education, as you can earn credits by simply participating in the association’s events. Even better, specialized organizations like the American Academy of Attorney-CPAs offer the ability to earn education credits for both licenses.
Most associations will have some form of professional development material, whether it is in the form of workshops, online classes, pamphlets, emails, or member-only documents. These benefits help young attorneys and CPAs stay on track for a long and successful career by sharing valuable insight into how the industries work.
Additionally, law and accounting fields are always changing, and professional organizations offer exclusive resources and updates on the latest industry trends.
Professional organizations remain a vital resource to help you achieve a long and successful career. So long as you select the right organizations and participate in events, you will find that the benefits far outweigh the yearly dues.