I attended my first IABC event in September 2013—just a couple of months ago—after a coworker encouraged me to attend with her. Walking into that first professional development event, I knew things were going to be a little different in comparison to other professional organization events I’ve attended.First, there was no sneaking in unnoticed. In such an intimate group, a newcomer is noticeable and that’s not a bad thing with this group.
The presentation, about SEO, was excellent and full of useful information that I could take back and apply at my own job. After the presentation, this welcoming group of professionals introduced themselves to me one by one. The members were friendly and as eager to find out more about me as they were to tell me about themselves. In fact, I had more people introduce themselves to me at one event than I’ve had combined in three years of membership in similar groups.
One of the benefits of joining a group like this is the networking opportunity—not just meeting someone and collecting a business card, but actually having relevant conversations and getting to know fellow members. IABC, which is full of members from different walks of life with ranging experience in a variety of disciplines at numerous companies across multiple industries, encourages growth through these relationships and conversations. I’ve attended a few more events since the September luncheon, and each one has enabled me to make connections with people, learn, and seek advice from other IABC members that I would have otherwise not have had the chance to connect to. I know this is just the beginning of a long-term relationship with IABC and I look forward to many more events!
-Courtney de Craen
Public Relations Specialist, Bridgepoint Education