Yes, you read the title right. AmSpirit Business Connections’ professional fees are stupid. It is simply idiotic to coerce entrepreneurs, sales representatives, and professionals to pony up a dollar or so for seemingly harmless infractions, such as arriving late, not shaking someone’s hand or not silencing an electronic device.
Do you know what is even more idiotic than professional fees? When business people lose hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars in business because they do not have the commitment or presence of mind to consistently conduct themselves in a professional manner.
The bottom line is that no one really cares about the nickels and dimes that a member pays for not shaking the Mystery Geeter’s hand or even the dollars a member might have to pony up for missing a lunch assignment. They, however, care immensely about the message this sends to prospective members and how this adversely affects the professional culture of the Chapter.
The linchpin to successful networking is trust and trust is built by doing the right thing (not just some of the time, but all of the time). If you consistently arrive late to the meeting, you impair the professionalism of the Chapter. If you dismiss the common courtesy of greeting those at the Chapter, the environment becomes that much colder of a place to gather. If you fail to make time to meet with your fellow members outside the Chapter meeting, you hinder the all-important “know, like and trust” within your Chapter.
Yes, professional fees are stupid and no one wants your spare change. They just want you to treat them and the meeting as if it involved a several thousand-dollar deal. This is because, in all likelihood, it does.