One notable event at the recent national ABC board meeting was the announcement of a membership campaign to get 1,000 new members nationally in 2018. Prioritizing membership makes sense, because it provides the foundation for everything we do for members.
More local and national ABC members increase the resources we need to help our companies recruit and retain qualified workers and to lobby elected officials on members’ behalf. When it comes to lobbying, nothing is more effective than being able to tell legislators how many people our companies employ – especially if a significant number of those employees are from the legislator’s district.
Growing ABC also increases awareness of the size and depth of the merit shop, and a national focus on membership will highlight the success our chapter is already enjoying:
• 20% increase in membership over last five years
• 261 new members recruited – an average of 52 annually – over that period
• 90% retention for four consecutive years
The recent numbers show no sign of slowing down. We brought in 25 new members during our fall membership drive and are on track for another year of 90% retention and overall growth in 2018.
Membership offers a variety of benefits for companies such as the Gould Construction Institute, the Merit Apprentice Program, the Building Mass Careers website (www.buildingmasscareers.com), the soon to launch pre-apprenticeship program, our lobbying efforts on Beacon Hill, investments in workforce development, and construction-specific insurance and retirement plans and resources. On top of that, members gain access to discount programs, labor relations guidance and chapter events that promote networking, including ABC MA’s Future Leaders, a group for up-and-coming young employees that helps them learn about the benefits of a career in construction.
Our successful efforts are led by full-time professional membership director Ken Ledwak. If you know of businesses you think are good membership candidates, please contact Ken at firstname.lastname@example.org or (781) 273-0123.
Increasing membership is one of the reasons for our growing success on Beacon Hill in recent years and for the variety of programs we’ve developed to help address the construction labor shortage. With your help, we can continue to prove the truth of our long-time rallying cry: “More members, more clout.”
John Anderson is chairman of the Associated Builders and Contractors Inc.-Mass. Chapter, Woburn, Mass. and president of Plumb House Inc., Milford, Mass.