January 7, 2016

New Year Resolution for Your Career: Get Involved!

You Know You Have!
Resolutions, specifically New Year's resolutions; I've heard them all and tried most of them as well. First week, great. Second week, still great but... Third week, OK. Fourth week, well there's always next year. Amazing, isn't? All the great intentions you declared through your New Year's Resolution are down the river, out to sea, see ya.

Everybody has those great intentions, in one way or another and some actually make it and are much better for their resolve.  I've resolved to eat healthier and can even pronounce quinoa (KEEN-wah for you novices). First week, GREAT! This article, however, isn't about my "new" lifestyle or calling out people who back off resolutions. This article is, as others have been in past issues, about you and our association. The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), which you are absolutely a member of through your local area home builders association (HBA), is about the home building industry. It's about providing a unified voice for all our members. Those members include builders and all those businesses that profit from a builder building a home. Builders and associates, together, one voice, one goal... a career. A career in the home building industry is a noble one. Think about it; you just finished up your holidays with family and friends, and where did the core of your activities take place? In a home, built by a builder for a family. That home was built with a roof, walls, floors, heat and lighting with the furnishings all being provided by associates. Let's not forget the services required to buy the home; mortgage, lawyers, title companies, etc. We, the members were a part of the holiday memories because we housed most of those memories.

I'm going to provide you with a New Year's Resolution that will help you professionally. If you are having success with your career, other resolutions will most likely be successful as well.

The resolution? Get involved with your HBA. If your chosen career is within the home building industry I will stress the resolution one more time; get involved. The HBA is providing you with the opportunity to meet like-minded building industry professionals. No one person can go it alone and the strength the HBA provides, in numbers, is worth the involvement. You, the member, benefit from every single thing that our association accomplishes in Washington, D.C. and in your respective state capitols. 

How you can help is quite simple; get involved! Each step below can be your individual resolution depending on which steps you've already taken:
  • Attend your general membership meetings. How can you expand your business opportunities if you're isolated? Get involved!
  • Network, meet people, engage in conversation, learn about others and have others get to know you. Word of mouth has always been the most trusted form of advertising (and it's fee!). Develop your social capital. You quite possibly can expand your sales team and the cost is true reciprocity. This only can work positively for you if you get involved!
  • Join a committee. Start off fun, possibly golf. You may be asking "how does joining a golf committee help me?" It helps you by bringing in net profits to the HBA which keeps its doors open and in turn help you as the one voice in your state capitol. It also helps you to expand your networking and have others see you in a leadership light. You could also join committees that deal with the issues of our industry; political action, legislative, legal, etc. This helps you by gaining detailed knowledge of your industry. To blindly go out and not know what's in the road is foolish thinking. The HBA gives you the education; get involved!
  • Serve on your HBA board of directors and see how the HBA truly maneuvers in this highly legislated and regulated industry of ours. Serving on the board will help you with your business plans, short term and long range, if you look at it from the standpoint of improving your career. All you need to do is... get involved!

I can go further but if you've made it to the board level momentum will take you much further. By getting involved you have made one resolution that I know you can stick with through the year because you want to provide for your family or have to save the funds to start a family. You may want your home, built by a builder, to be secure in the knowledge that you are successful and you are making resolutions to keep being successful. There may be some who are reading this thinking "I've tried this and it didn't work." Many successful people have failed, many times and sometimes miserably. Determination is the key characteristic followed by passion and then knowledge. The HBA can't provide the first two, that's on you. However knowledge brings many things to those who want it. Knowing the HBA by getting involved will give you insight that those on the outside will never have. How's that for a resolution result? All you need to do is...

submitted by Michael Kurpiel, CGA, CGA

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