Make the Most of Your Membership

A Conversation With SMPS Chapter Services Manager Natalie Gozzard.
Member Spotlight: Laura McDonald, CPSM

As SMPS chapter services manager, Natalie Gozzard works to grow relationships with and support chapter volunteers. She’s also the staff liaison for SMPS regional conferences and our chapter awards program. In her position, she strives to provide all chapter volunteers with the resources and training essential to fulfill their roles—and make their lives easier. Natalie chats with us about her recent trip to an SMPS regional conference and how members can make the most of their membership through chapter involvement.

You attended the SMPS Pacific Regional Conference (PRC) in Anchorage, AK, in February. Can you tell us briefly about your experience? Fantastic experience! Chair Andrea Story, CPSM, and the PRC Committee did a superb job—great speakers and programming and rich networking opportunities. Our SMPS Alaska hosts were gracious and welcoming. I love attending our regional conferences—it’s a wonderful opportunity for professional development and to connect with SMPS members, volunteers, and sponsors.

You recently offered a workshop to chapter volunteers, and those interested in volunteering, on chapter leadership. What are some ways that a member, who isn’t currently in a chapter leadership position, can get involved in their chapter? Engage with your chapter and share your story. Why did you join? What are you looking for from your membership? Ask others to share their SMPS story. Attend chapter events, connect with SMPS members and volunteers, and volunteer yourself in whatever capacity you can.

Can you provide a few tips on how to make the most of your membership through chapter involvement? SMPS is a community of marketing and business development professionals working to gain and enhance business relationships for their A/E/C companies. Familiarize yourself with all the rich benefits your SMPS membership affords you, attend and connect with SMPS members at chapter events/programs, and get plugged in. You’ll appreciate the opportunities and connections. SMPS memberships grow careers and create business opportunities.

How can getting involved in your chapter help you on a personal and professional level? Educational opportunities exist to enhance your job performance and expand your knowledge. Develop and practice your leadership skills through volunteering. Volunteer to serve on chapter committees, your chapter’s board of directors, regional conference planning committees, and Society task forces and committees while building a strong community of your peers. It’s important to engage! As the great Wayne Gretzky once said: You miss 100% of the shots you never take.

I want to attend professional development or conferences through SMPS. What are some benefits to my firm for attending? SMPS is the only organization dedicated to creating business opportunities in the A/E/C industries. You’ll gather information to differentiate your firm from the competition, secure business intelligence, and discover partnering opportunities and/or strengthen relationships you already have. It’s a total win-win.

SMPS wants to here from you! What are some ways you’re getting involved in your SMPS chapter? How has attending conferences and events helped you and your firm? Reach out to Natalie Gozzard at [email protected] and let us know!

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