If you are looking to further your career, a smart place to start is joining a professional organization. These organizations can help you enhance your network and find useful industry resources, and they often host valuable events and conferences. All the national organizations have local chapters that are easy to plug into and offer immediate networking opportunities. If you are looking for a place to build meaningful connections, take a look at a few big organizations that should be on your 2015 networking agenda.

  1. American Bar Association: One of the world’s largest voluntary professional organizations, the ABA is an organization helping lawyers enrich their careers. Being part of their association offers many benefits such as practice speciality groups, leadership opportunities, public service initiatives, CLE courses and discounts on brand-name products and services.
  2. Association of Corporate Counsel: The ACC serves the professional needs of in-house counsel and is the premier source for information, networking opportunities and education. There are many benefits including access to their award winning journal, education materials and member e-groups you can join.
  3. National Association of Women Lawyers: This organization serves as an educational forum and active voice for the concerns of women in the legal profession. NAWL supports and advances the interests of women in law. If you are a woman in law looking to advance and prosper in your career, consider joining NAWL’s network of professionals.
  4. National Federation of Paralegal Associations: The NFPA is an issues-driven, policy-oriented professional association with over 50 member associations across the United States. Being a member includes discounts on their annual convention rates and a subscription to their magazine. The NFPA annual convention is comprised mainly of a democratic process of discussion, and debate to address issues that local associations have raised.
  5. More specialized organizations: There are many organizations out there that are focused on specific practice areas, areas of interest or backgrounds. This website is a great starting point to find your perfect networking match.