Every industry has a professional association that works to promote and enhance the business of its members. We all need a place to improve our knowledge about the latest happenings that affect our work, and a chance to network with colleagues.

The Association of Energy Services Professionals, or AESP, is a great example of such an association. Their mission is to benefit and promote the clean energy industry and those who work within it. Recently, I was elected to serve my first, three-year term as a member of AESP’s board of directors, and I’m proud to help advance the cause. 

As a national organization, AESP offers a high-level picture of what’s happening across the country. They’re tireless promoters of energy efficiency, and help us all do a better work by sharing best practices, trends and ideas. Through national conferences, webinars, and other professional development events, we have access to experts and thought leaders we might not find in our local markets.   

No matter what your role in the industry, lending your time and talent to your professional association can be beneficial to your company and very rewarding personally. Before I joined the AESP board, I was active at the local level, attended workshops and conferences, participated on several committees, and co-wrote a three-part series for the organization’s member publication. Now, I have a chance to make an even bigger impact and help steer our industry toward the future.  

Yes, this type of involvement takes time, which is a precious commodity for all of us. Plus, professional associations compete with other passions in our lives, both at home and at work. For me, it was an easy decision to play a deeper role in AESP’s work. I have an unbelievable opportunity to network and collaborate with the best and brightest in our business. I get to see the national picture from the inside and learn what’s happening within different aspects of the industry. Even after three decades in energy services, I have plenty to learn, and value the chance to continue to grow in my career.    

I anticipate this will be some of the most rewarding work I have done in my 30+ year career. I hope to make an impact on the organization, and share the knowledge I’ve gathered to help make the industry a better and more connected place in which to work. I encourage everyone who works in this industry (or any industry) to find ways to be more deeply engaged. Not only is it important professionally, but it may also be the most fun and the most satisfying work you can do.