During our learning event program last month our presenter, Diane Siefkes, polled the group to find out how many and to which social media networks each of us belongs. The vast majority of us belong to more than one. I think many of us felt pretty good to be in that sort of company; the hip, happening, tech savvy crowd. We raised our hands with zeal then threw our shoulders back letting the others in the room bask in our coolness. Then she asked how many of us are active in those networks. Some of us weren’t so cool anymore. I know personally that my LinkedIn account has quite a few cobwebs; and aside from an occasional message to a friend or family member, my approach to Facebook is somewhat voyeuristic. I watch the stories on Facebook like some people watch soap operas. I’ve watched relationships start, marriages end, battles with cancer, Disney vacations and more. However, to say that I have used Facebook as a tool to improve the connection I have with friends, family and people who have similar interests to mine would be a lie.
Many of us are in the same boat. One person at the meeting told me, “Today was the first day I have ever seen my LinkedIn page. Bailey, Lauerman built it for me, but I’ve never used it.” I think we see the magic of these technologies and figure that good things will just happen. If we have professional looking LinkedIn pages employers and clients will beat a path to our door; all of our long lost cousins and high school chums will seek us out if we post our smiling faces on Facebook. Then, when it doesn’t happen, we blame the technology. We do the same thing with everything from health clubs to professional organizations.
When something isn’t producing the results you had expected you must ask yourself if you have put enough in to realize any sort of return. Return on investment isn’t possible without investment. I’m not talking about membership dues; paying your dues and then lamenting that you get nothing in return is like buying a hammer then wondering why the family portrait is still sitting on the floor.
We have made the Power of 2 membership easy. This gives you membership to both our local chapter and ASTD National in one easy purchase.
- Power of 2 is the first membership option listed on the membership page of our website.
- You only enter your information once.
- You (or your employer) only cut one check. Particularly convenient if your employer only pays for one membership for you per year, as it is a package membership with a cost savings built in to the low price.
- We handle all of the paperwork for your ASTD national membership.
The door has been opened; it’s up to you to take full advantage. You can pay your dues and peek in on all of the juicy things ASTD is doing or you can pick up the hammer and get to work. Use these tools for what they are designed to do: keep you up to date with advances in the field, make connections that will help your career, provide discounts on professional learning opportunities and make a difference in the lives of your learners and colleagues.
At the chapter level we have a number of great opportunities for you to be involved:
- Two different ASTD national certificate programs.
o The Coaching Certificate is being offered in June.
o The Advanced Designing Learning Certificate Program is set for September.
- Dennison Bhola, Ph.D. will be our featured speaker in June.
- A number of different committees are forming or looking to add members.
An ASTD National membership offers myriad of benefits too long to list, including:
- T+D Magazine
- T+D Webcasts
- Discounts on things from books to automobile insurance.
- Discounted registration for ICE (ASTD’s International Conference & Exposition) scheduled for May 2012 in Denver.
- Many other national conferences and learning opportunities throughout the year.
An ASTD membership is what you make of it. You may pay your dues and adorn you resume and LinkedIn page, or you can achieve the return on your investment that is available to you. For more information on how to maximize your membership, please feel free to reach out to any of ASTD-Lincoln’s board members or long time members.