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HR Professional Associations: The Importance of Belonging


(HRD) - As a busy Human Resources specialist you know for the majority of your day, there are more issues on your plate than you always have time for. If you're looking to cut corners in your daily duties to squeeze more work into your week, ignoring your HR professional association, and their related activities, is a poor place to start. Being a part of such groups is absolutely essential, not just for your company's interests but also your own.

If you have never been a member of a HR professional association, they are made up of people involved in workforce management for their companies. They meet regularly to help their members become more effective at their jobs and feel greater connectivity with their peers. Here are a number of ways professional associations, especially Human Resource-related ones can make you a better manager.

Peer Group Pleasure

Professional associations feature members that are all in a similar line of work. They hear what you're saying in language only you and they understand. Being attracted to the human resource position in a company often means your fellow association members were drawn to the same things about the profession that you were, and may be like-minded in other areas of life, too.

This kinship creates opportunities for accomplishment unavailable to individuals when the sum of the members becomes greater than the whole. For example, some professional associations 'adopt' a specific charity and use their group affiliations to benefit the cause. A case in point is the Human Resources Institute of Alberta which recently hosted a golf tournament for their 4000+ members to raise money for Calgary's Champions Career Centre. This charity is dedicated to providing wider access to employment for disabled individuals in our province.

A Forum for Best Practices

Professional associations provide a medium for mentorship. HR directors with less experience than others can learn a great deal about their industry from those that have been 'in the biz' for decades. As well, those that are recent graduates from their HR training can relay the latest information to those that have been out of school longer than they care to admit. This two-way information stream is beneficial to both sides.

Professional Associations Protect Your Industry

One of the most important jobs for an HR institute is to protect their members from outside attack. For example, the association can act as a lobby group if the government tries to put policies in place that run contrary to the interests of HR managers and the workers they are responsible for. There is strength in numbers that produce a far louder voice than any individual can.

Enhancing Your Personal and Corporate Network

When you are a member of a professional group, you will come into contact with a great many other people in your industry. This is helpful when looking for staff for your own department or if you are seeking employment with a different company. It is always helpful to know the other players in the game.

Membership Has Its Privileges

By associating yourself with a professional guild, you are telling others in your industry you take your position seriously. It says that you are committed to excellence and ongoing improvement. It lets everyone know you're not just along for the ride but that you understand your occupation at a deeper level than non-members may.

Good For You; Better For Your Employer

Having a better trained and connected staff that comes as a result of membership in a professional HR body is a boon to your business. By encouraging your company's in-house professionals to become better informed about the newest developments in the world of effective labour management is obviously a benefit to your corporate superiors. They can use your enhanced knowledge to bring best practises to their business. It's good for you and great for the company.

So what are you waiting for? Look into professional groups in your area today. You have nothing to lose and so much to gain


Author: Chris McKerracher

Chris McKerracher is a Social Media Marketer and Professional Writer for Industrial NetMedia. Chris has worked as a journalist, editorialist and humourist for a number of Alberta newspapers since 1995. He has also written eight theatrical plays which have been produced with the ninth to be staged in May of 2016.

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