We hear again and again that our industry is a relationship industry. It hadn't been made that clear to me recently until I attended the CMP/CMM Breakfast at MPI's WEC. Talk about camaraderie. I was surprised by how many people I knew in that room of a few hundred people.
It not only spoke to what the certification education can do for you (some of these peeps I'd met for the first time during the CMP study groups!), but spoke to how concrete our business relationships can be. Folks I hadn't seen in almost a decade were still friends and we picked up almost where we left off, as if no time had passed.
But we also talked about work, jobs and stuff in the industry. I spoke to a fellow CMPer who had been out of work for 18 months and just started a new job two days ago. I spoke to another planner who was preparing to go back to school and get a masters degree. Some of us also talked about the WEC meeting and what we liked and what we thought wasn't working.
Energy filled the room and you could feel a bit of weight lifted as everyone realized they were in a place that made us feel safe, smart and respected. Even those of us with decades in the industry felt a bit re-energized as we sat with colleagues, those with shared experiences and just knew we were in a place of inclusion.
Despite any glitches we may have discovered at WEC, the reminder that we're not alone, that we have friends, helped us to overlook that. After all, we have relationships that Superman himself couldn't break. When you have that, the small things don't seem to matter so much.