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Behold the Networking Power of Nursing Association Membership

Keith Carlson

As a nurse with a career to nurture, do you belong to any nursing associations? The organizations exist to support nurses, lobby at the legislative level, provide learning and networking opportunities, and move the profession or a specialty forward. Fellow members of nursing organizations are like a brain trust of professional support, information and expertise. They have much to offer during your journey as a nurse. If you're not a member of a nursing association, it may be prudent to find the right group in the interest of the robustness of your professional network.

Networking gold

As a member of a state or regional nursing association, you build relationships with other nurses, creating powerful connections over time. When you're looking for work, changing specialties or wanting to meet healthcare professionals within particular facilities or areas of practice, your nursing association network can help you make those connections. Within more specialized nursing organizations, thought leaders and knowledgeable colleagues are available to connect with you, and those relationships can be empowering and exciting. This also allows you the chance to share your gifts and knowledge with others in meaningful ways. Some of the relationships you create within your professional sphere may very well blossom into friendships or they may remain strictly collegial in nature, both of which offer value for your life and career.

Specialty nursing organizations

If you choose to embrace membership in a specialty nursing organization, such as the Infusion Nurses Society or the American Holistic Nurses Association, you have access to the movers and shakers within that specialty. When you attend meetings or conferences, many of those nursing leaders are more than willing to allow you to pick their brains and take advantage of their expert knowledge. Some nursing organizations have private Facebook or LinkedIn groups where members can interact. You may also find organizations with mentoring programs that provide members the chance to be in the role of both mentor or mentee. The value of these interactions and relationships cannot be overstated.

The power of association

When you belong to a nursing association, the information made available to you can have an enormously positive impact on your career. For learning the latest evidence-based practices and understanding the direction in which a particular specialty is heading, those nursing organizations dedicated to one particular area of practice are priceless. Aside from the knowledge and expertise that you can glean from nursing association membership, the human capital within those organizations is astounding in its breadth and depth. The networking opportunities within nursing associations are like human gold waiting to be mined in support of your career. Align yourself with like-minded professionals who are as dedicated to nursing as you are, and your career will be boosted and strengthened by the power of association, camaraderie and strategic networking.