NAHB Young Professional Committee Formed

Filed in Home Building, Membership by on October 7, 2015 3 Comments

It’s an issue that’s increasingly on the radar for HBAs all over the country: How do we encourage younger home building industry professionals to become association leaders?

The NAHB Board of Directors gave a thumbs up to a new idea during its meeting last week in Dallas: The NAHB Young Professionals Committee. Designed to encourage under-45 members’ involvement in every level of the Federation including networking, education and advocacy initiatives, the new committee is actively seeking members as it begins to work on its plans.

“We want to develop the next generation not only members. but of association and industry leaders,” said Kim Hefner-Hines, general manager for Allen Homes in South Dakota, who led an NAHB task force exploring the formation of a young professionals group.

This group will help lead NAHB’s efforts to make membership more attractive to this important demographic by exploring services and products that could be developed to serve their unique needs.

“We also wanted to give the younger members a place where they can discuss the issues they think are relevant to the Federation at large. There are a lot of legislative issues we have at the national level and local and state,” and a younger builder’s perspective could be useful to the more seasoned leadership that typically holds those committee spots.

The committee’s portfolio will include

  • Help NAHB meet the needs of younger members, such as developing new services that would be beneficial to the organization in serving the needs of the young professional members.
  • Provide direction and guidance for NAHB to enhancing and developing the member experience as it relates to younger members.
  • Give insight on current programming including mentoring, leadership training and entrepreneurial & general education for emerging industry professionals.

Hefner-Hines hopes that members will also work on strategies to ensure that NAHB Student Chapter members make the transition into full-fledged association members when they graduate, and helping to grow the student chapter program itself.

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“We need to do everything we can to attract students and get high schools more interested in our industry,” she said. “These students’ parents want them to go into medical fields or technology. But not everybody wants to do that. If we don’t get them into the industry we certainly aren’t going to get them into the association.”

Interested members can fill out the committee application, and while they are at it, they can also apply for an additional committee spot: to encourage more involvement across a wider swath of the association, the board is now recommending that NAHB members join a maximum of two committees at a time.

And while builders, remodelers and Associate members under the age of 45 will form the committee membership, the board doesn’t want to turn older members away at the door.

“Just because they turn 45 doesn’t mean they should quit coming to committee meetings,” Hefner-Himes said. “We need older members to be mentors,” because both new and experienced professionals can learn from each other.

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Comments (3)

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  1. Great addition!
    Let’s get younger members involved and keep them involved!
    Everyone make a list of whom you know who should be involved and get them involved today!
    ONwards and UPwards!

  2. Would you please advise the staff person in charge of the YP Committee? I need more information before forwarding an application request to potential members.

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