How the AGC Helps My Construction Practice

Originally posted 2009-07-27 09:00:00.

AGC-VA

About three years ago, I became active in the AGC of Virginia. I was unsure what the benefit would be because my prior firm was a member, but not particularly active, so I did not see a real benefit to membership while there. However, all that has changed.

Since I began actively participating in the meetings, presenting at functions and participating in everything from Sporting Clay shoots to membership committee meetings, I have gained a great deal. On a personal level, the friendships are great. I realized why I like to represent construction professionals. This is a good group of people that I find easy to want to help out.

On a professional level, the marketing opportunities and “face time” for a lawyer who wants to help contractors and subcontractors with their business practices and other concerns is unparalleled. I have gained clients, both directly and indirectly through my connections from the AGC. I have also gained insight into ConsensusDOCS through membership on the AGC Contract Documents Committee on a national level.

What I have learned from the last three years is that active participation is key. Merely being an “on the list” member of an organization like this is not enough. Contractors are hands on individuals who want to see you and get to know you before they are ready to hire you as a consultant. Especially in a world of e-mail, Twitter, and other Web 2.0 opportunities (that I take advantage of regularly), face to face is still the best way I have found to get to know someone.

I also know that participation in a trade organization that you enjoy and where you can meet potential business partners and gain knowledge relevant to your business and your clients’ businesses is a great way to grow your practice (whether as an attorney or as a construction professional). In short, the money spent with the AGC on an annual basis is well worth it. I can recommend the AGC highly to anyone in the commercial construction world. If you are an architect, engineer, bonding professional, contractor or subcontractor, be sure to check out membership in your local chapter.

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11 Responses to How the AGC Helps My Construction Practice
  1. Nolan
    July 28, 2009 | 10:58 PM

    This is a great article. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Andrea Goldman
    July 29, 2009 | 11:08 PM

    Chris,

    What you say is so true. Construction people are good folks. In addition, I believe that attorneys who "walk the walk" and try to learn about their clients' business provide a lot more value to their clients. If you can't bother becoming educated about the industry, why would someone want to hire you? I have had the same experience with the Builders' Association of Greater Boston (BAGB) but you make me want to join AGC right away!

    Andrea

  3. Christopher G. Hill
    July 30, 2009 | 10:09 PM

    Thanks Andrea, I am glad that you have had a similar experience with BAGB.

  4. [...] have written before about how just membership in the AGC has helped me grow my practice and make new contacts and friends.  Participation in these events not only helps to grow my [...]

  5. [...] their business day in and day out.  For these reasons, among others, the AGC of Virginia has been a big help to me in growing my construction law practice.  I highly recommend that construction lawyers check [...]

  6. [...] it was not until relatively recently when I began to participate fully in the AGC of Virginia, and the national AGC that I really began to love what I do.  I found out [...]

  7. [...] out in solo practice I was certain that I would not have the time or the energy to keep up with my Associated General Contractors of Virginia and the other personal, face to face marketing that I found so valuable.  I thought I’d be [...]

  8. [...] of the great folks that I’ve met online, and then gotten to know in person when growing my real world practice.  Your help and support have been invaluable and presented me with opportunities that I would [...]

  9. [...] elsewhere).  Contractors and subcontractors are more likely to work with those they know, whether through an association like the AGC, or a breakfast meeting.  The recent convention refreshed many of these in person bonds and acted [...]

  10. [...] elsewhere).  Contractors and subcontractors are more likely to work with those they know, whether through an association like the AGC, or a breakfast meeting.  The recent convention refreshed many of these in person bonds and acted [...]

  11. [...] way toward a happy and long term client.  Getting out to speak with clients and potential clients, through trade organizations or a simple cup of coffee, is, for my time and money, the best way to link up with the construction [...]

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About Musings

I am a construction lawyer in Richmond, Virginia, a LEED AP, and have been nominated by my peers to Virginia's Legal Elite in Construction Law on multiple occasions. I provide advice and assistance with mechanic's liens, contract review and consulting, occupational safety issues (VOSH and OSHA), and risk management for construction professionals.

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