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With Whom Do You Associate?

Show me your friends, and I’ll show you your future.

 

If it’s true that we are the average of the five people with whom we most associate, and that birds of a feather do flock together, the real question we must answer is “Who are the people with whom we most often associate?”

 

For our purposes, let’s focus on your professional associations. Earlier in this decade a research report commissioned by the William E. Smith Center for Association Research concluded that membership associations have a much higher proportion of high earners and those more satisfied with their professional life than those who don’t belong to their industry association or professional society.

 

The fascinating insight for me was that there is reverse causation: more intrinsically satisfied and highly paid people join and belong to these organizations. They opt in.

 

The title of the research report is “Where the Winners Meet. Why Happier, More Successful People Gravitate Toward Associations.”

 

What associations do you have? Who comprises your support team? What membership organization do you belong to?

 

With a deep sense of distrust in so many American institutions, what can we believe in? The Gallup Confidence in Institutions research tells us that as a nation we’ve lost trust in so many of our National institutions. Net positive trust is −37% for Congress, −5% for big business, 2% for public schools, and 10% for the medical system.

 

The good news is that the military is +69%, and small business is +61%.

 

If you lead or work for an industry association or professional society, you have an inherent advantage. The best and brightest want to be part of your organization.

 

What a great opportunity to deliver the trust, benefits, values, and significance that the winners in your industry or profession are seeking.

 

The bar is higher than ever. If Gallup rated your organization, what would your trust index score be?