Getting involved in an association can benefit you in many ways – from networking, to exploring partnerships, to developing lasting personal and professional relationships. Yet, time is limited, and with a busy career and social life, you can’t possibly get involved with all the organizations in which you might be interested.
You can only pick the ones that are most relevant to your life and career, now and into the future.
Here are the 10 reasons why you should join the World Sustainable Finance Association:
Membership in a professional organization is particularly beneficial for those who work in the finance industry because these associations typically hold educational meetings that provide updates on the issues that affect your jobs. From recent trends in investment theories and practices to new technological tools that will make your jobs easier, events and trainings hosted by WSFA provide continuing education to help you stay updated on virtually everything happening in the global sustainability and sustainable investing world.
Finance professionals are often extremely busy and can get stuck in their own little bubbles. Being around other industry professionals with different viewpoints will expose you to new ideas and outlooks. This can have a very positive effect not only on your personal growth and development, but impact the overall success of your organization as well.
WSFA offers a number of events throughout the year that allow sustainable finance professionals to network with their peers, including local events and annual conferences. Many of these conferences are intended as a way for members to connect with local, national, and global leaders within the sustainable finance industry to expand their professional networks.
For those working on certification, another benefit of membership is the chance to enroll in a training class that will help them prepare for and ultimately pass the certification exam. WSFA is the administrator of the Certified Sustainable Finance Analyst (CSFA) program. The CSFA training classes are offered in partnership with the Sustainable Finance Institute - the world leading sustainable finance education and research provider, so you’re more likely to become adequately prepared.
Beyond the critical continuing education offerings, WSFA also provides professional development opportunities. These come in the form of workshops, online classes, or member-only materials. Your career doesn’t have to depend on what is available to you within your organization. Development opportunities from WSFA are intended for your personal and professional improvement.
WSFA can be a great way to increase your own visibility, as well as that of your employer. This increased visibility can be essential when trying to enhance your own professional brand, especially in the beginning of your career, and can help your organization grow, since potential clients, partners and investors like to do business with a familiar face who share some commonalities.
Many junior sustainable finance professionals have experienced this scenario: “I can’t find a job because I don’t have any experience but how can I get experience if I can’t find a job?” Obtaining employment in the finance industry can be extremely challenging, particularly for a new graduate. WSFA offers career resources to help members break into the job market or find a new position. Being a member of WSFA can help you get your foot in the door.
One of the greatest benefits of joining WSFA is the opportunity it likely provides to either be a mentor or find one. Mentorship offers the ability to learn the industry from someone who has been working in it for years. Or you can give back by sharing your expertise with someone new to the field and the region that you are in. These authentic mentoring relationships beat paying money to some proclaimed expert any day.
Another benefit to membership is the access you get to newsletters, research reports, and other publications that can offer helpful information about the dynamics of the sustainable finance industry. Such resources may also provide news about upcoming events, conferences, meetings, and even career opportunities not publicized elsewhere.
Being a member of WSFA will get you out of the organization to connect with like-minded professionals who likely share at least some of the same interests in the most promising sustainable investing industry. Take time to connect with others who have made the same decision and are facing the same experiences.
There is no quicker pick-me-up than becoming involved with something you feel passionate about, whether it is protecting the environment, advocating corporate social responsibility, or raising funds for impact investing. Becoming involved with the WSFA community introduces you to people from all walks of life—and those people know other people.
The bottom line is that consistent and active involvement is the key to successfully developing relationships and business opportunities.