MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT
The FTA: your professional network…of mates
Recently I had a conversation with an old colleague about her experience of returning to a Treasury career after a relatively long break. It’s not uncommon. Many of us have, at some stage in our lives and for various reasons, temporarily parted from our positions (either voluntarily or involuntarily).
During her break my colleague said she didn’t really keep in contact with too many old work mates and didn’t go out of her way to network. But once she returned to her career she noticed how comforting it was to see many familiar (and welcoming) faces when she did accept networking and professional invitations. She was surprised at how much she valued this deep sense of belonging, and how much she had missed it.
This conversation made me reflect on how social human beings are by nature and how often we seek people to associate with (for work or play- sometimes both). Everyone has a group of friends who we regularly socialise with on a personal level, but there are also friends we socialise with on a professional level. These are people we know through our careers who we choose to spend time with. They’re outside our personal friendship circle but we still enjoy their company and conversation at work related events and occasions.
I don’t think we realise how often we call upon our professional network, both new and old colleagues, as a normal part of working life, when we need information, support or just a chat about a specific topic, until we can’t. Recently I was part of another conversation where someone who had made a big move interstate was speaking about missing their previous office which was full of people who were experienced in Treasury. In their new role this person was quite alone and had nobody to bounce things off. They were finding it tough.
This idea of ‘professional friends on tap’ is the true essence of what the FTA is about. The Association works hard to create a platform where like minded people who share similar positions, interests or a professional connection can connect. The FTA helps us to socialise professionally, support each other and share knowledge, skills and information.
Of course, this is a fundamental reason why associations like the FTA form (and why we need them). The FTA is about creating friendships and connections on a professional level. And this is why it’s so important to make the effort to attend events held by the FTA. These events not only provide opportunities to educate ourselves but also keep us in contact with our “professional friends”. It’s a wonderful thing to attend an Association event and find familiar, friendly faces to talk to and catch up with.
Don’t forget the ultimate professional friends event for the FTA is coming up in just under two months. We’d love to see you at our upcoming annual conference so please book your place and spend some time with your professional network.
Mike Christensen FFTP