For a business owner, the decision to join a business association should be an easy one. Active business associations can bring immense benefits to their members. However, some associations mean very little to members, due to dormancy, poor leadership, or perceived neglect of members’ welfare. In this article, we will review some of the benefits of membership in a business association.
Strength in Numbers
A key role that local business associations play is influencing public policymaking in favour of their members. To succeed in this regard, associations count on the power and influence of their members. Governments will most likely take note of the size of an association’s member base. An association with a large membership base has a greater likelihood of shifting government policy in its favour.
As a matter of practice, business associations organise various events, such as dinner galas and exhibitions. Through such events, these associations provide excellent platforms for business owners to network. Through these networks, new business ideas are born, partnerships explored, and novel ways of doing things initiated.
Associations do not work alone. They usually enter into agreements and understandings with other institutions. Key among these are financial institutions, such as banks and insurance companies. Through these agreements, association members reap tangible benefits, such as tailored credit facilities, lower insurance premiums, and low-interest loans – benefits they could not enjoy were they outside the ambit of the association.
Training and Research
Associations provide relevant training to their members on various topical issues, such as taxation policy, industrial relations, and bookkeeping. This training is offered to business owners, or their employees, at subsidised rates. With the knowledge imparted through this training, businesses are able to run smoothly and navigate complex issues. Moreover, some associations invest in research to improve the overall knowledge of their members.