Kerry Walsh, Chairman of the AIEA, Owner of Hatch Events Ltd has written this weeks blog on why now is a good time to join the AIEA.

As a small business owner, you want to continually be growing yourself, your team and your business. And one of the best ways to do that? Join an industry association. While some business owners may think that industry associations are for professionals at the beginning of their careers, the truth is, these organisations offer a huge variety of benefits. But the question is what, exactly, do industry associations have to offer established business owners—and how can they help your business?

Let’s take a look at some reasons you should consider joining the alliance and how your membership can help take your business to the next level.

  1. Expand Your Network With Like-minded Professionals…

When you’re running and growing a business, it’s not just what you know that can help make you successful. Who you know can be just as important. Industry associations are a great way to connect with contacts within the events world and, in particular, to connect with other business owners. Having relationships with other business owners in your industry can add huge value to your company; because they know the ins and outs of what it’s like to run a business in the events sector and have experienced many of the same highs and lows you have, they can be a great sounding board for exploring new ideas, working through challenges, or helping you grow your business.

  1. Grow As a Business Owner

The AIEA offer a variety of educational opportunities, from industry-specific training to more general workshops on skills that can help you become a stronger business owner (like contracts, insurance, TOMS, etc). By engaging with those educational opportunities, you can grow as an entrepreneur and grow your business in the process. It doesn’t matter how many educational opportunities the alliance offers, those opportunities can only help you grow as a business owner if you engage with them. So if you want to leverage industry associations for professional growth, make sure you’re willing to put the time and effort into exploring the educational opportunities the alliance offers or suggest some topics to offer training in.

  1. Advocate for Your Industry

Most industries have common issues that impact nearly all businesses that operate within the space, including different laws, regulations and policies that may prevent your business from growing to its full potential. Professional organisations, and the AIEA is no exception, regularly lobby the government on behalf of our members to ensure our members interests are protected. By joining the alliance, you can become an active advocate for our industry and fight for what’s best for your business and your clients or, at the very least, stay on top of what’s being advocated for on your behalf.

  1. Keep Your Finger on the Pulse of Industry Trends

There is only one thing you can pretty much guarantee in business regardless of the industry that you’re in, things are constantly changing. Joining the AIEA is a great way to keep your finger on the pulse of how your industry is growing and changing, stay on top of emerging trends, and keep up-to-date on the information you need to stay on top of.

The opportunity to network with industry professionals, learn more about your industry and grow as a business owner, all opportunities that are par for the course when you join an industry association can make your business stronger, and give you an advantage over your competitors that don’t have access to those same opportunities. Industry associations are really all about growth, growth for yourself and growth for your business. And now that you know some of the reasons you should consider joining a professional association, we hope you’ll get out there and contact our membership secretary, Sally Clift, and sign up to the AIEA and use it to take your business (and yourself!) to the next level. We would love to welcome you in…….