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Joining Associations and Organizations

Every time you turn around you’re asked to join this group, that group, or another group – you are made many promises about what that particular group will do for you, and then, you’re asked to pay a hefty  fee, usually yearly, to be part of the organization.

Is joining a group or organization something you should do as a Virtual Assistant? Certainly, as a business owner there are a few groups and organizations you should be willing to join.  Many organizations that you join will be considered a business expense but in any case you can’t join all of them, so choose wisely.

Assuming the organization is legitimate, when you are making your decision ask yourself three questions.

1. What does this group offer me?

Does  the group offer you something specific that no other group or organization an provide? Certifications? Discounts? Troubleshooting? Templates? Insurance? Networking?  Pride? What would the yearly savings vs. cost be – realistically –  if you did join?

2. What can I offer the group?

One of the values when joining any group or organization is something we don’t often consider. It is very important to know if you can offer the group anything aside from money by joining. Many groups have a board of directors, or officers and you would do yourself a favor by doing your fair share of volunteering some of your time to advance the organizations cause.

3. Do your personal values and the groups values match?

Many groups and organizations are also lobbying groups. This means they participate in lobbying the government for certain laws, regulations, and benefits. If you do not agree with the core mission of the group, don’t join. There is likely another group that fits your ideals better. There is no need to change the mission of any group because there is almost always another group that will fit your needs better.

Whatever you decide make sure that you really want to join, that there is value in joining, and that the organization is legitimate. Never  fall for high pressured sales pitches when it comes to joining a group. Join because you want to, feel it is beneficial to you both, and then you will feel good about it, no matter the monetary commitment.

About Stephanie Watson

Mom | Wife | Virtual Assistant | Content Strategist
Stephanie has been working from home for over 20 years as a virtual assistant, template bender, and content writer. She's currently transitioning to business coach. You can learn more about her at her website http://www.barrypublishing.com.

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