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Frequently Asked Questions

We all had questions when we joined ATDChi! Here are some of the most common questions we hear from prospective and newer members. Have a question you don’t see here? E-mail us your question at admin@ATDChi.org and we’ll do our best to find you an answer.

Our FAQ is broken down into the following sections:

MEMBERSHIP BASICS: Details of our organization, your membership, and the value of both.
MAKING MEETINGS MATTER: How our meetings work, and how they can work for you.
THE LARGER PICTURE: Our larger organization ATD, and how we fit in as a local chapter.
THE INNER WORKINGS: More details about ATDChi and how it functions.

PART 1: Membership Basics

Details of our organization, your membership, and the value of both.

What is ATDChi?
We are! The Association for Talent Development, Chicagoland Chapter (ATDChi) is the "go-to” association for workplace learning and performance professionals in the Chicagoland area. Our strength is in the fact that we run between 500 – 1000 members historically, making us one of the largest such organizations in the world. By joining ATDChi, you plug yourself into an exciting and growing network of fellow professionals in this field!

For more information on Who We Are, Our Vision, Our Mission, and Our Strategic Initiatives, check out our "About ATDChi” page.

What does it cost to become a member?
ATDChi offers reasonable individual membership rates. Student members receive substantial discounts! For information on membership rates, check out our "Join ATDChi” page.

Do my dues also get me into ATD?
ATDChi dues and ATD dues are separate. However, if you join both, you get a discount on your ATD dues. ATD Membership does provide a host of other benefits though. Check out the ATD.org’s Members page: http://www.astd.org/Members/Become-a-Member?

What’s the value of being a member?
Getting Connected, Staying Current, Increasing Effectiveness, and Finding Opportunities!

  • Getting Connected: Our online member directory and networking dinners ensure that you get plugged into our network of hundreds of workplace learning and performance professionals.
  • Staying Current: Our online Training Today publication and substantive monthly meetings mean you are regularly being exposed to the hot topics in our industry.
  • Increase Effectiveness: Our Workplace Learning and Performance Institute as well as other full-day workshops with industry luminaries provide multiple opportunities every year to sharpen fundamental and emerging skills.
  • Find an Opportunity: Our employment database and network connections have facilitated new positions for many of our members!

What’s it mean to become a member?
The workplace learning and performance professionals who come to ATDChi all join for different reasons. Some come to network and enjoy the camaraderie of others who share the rewards and challenges of our field. Others come because ATDChi presents a warm and friendly environment in which to learn and share knowledge. Many come because they recognize that truly being a professional means keeping one’s finger on the pulse of this ever-changing industry.

For more on what we believe in as workplace learning and performance professionals, check out the ATD (National) Code of Ethics. Our national organization sets a powerful standard for the profession, and we are proud to honor it in Chicagoland: Code of Ethics

How soon can I join?
You may join at any time. All you have to do is go to our Join ATDChi page and complete the membership registration process. 


PART 2: Making Meetings Matter

How our meetings work, and how they can work for you.

What are your meetings like?
Fun, Relaxed, and Informative. We have meetings on the third Thursday of almost every month. There are two major formats, which normally alternate month-to-month. You can always tell which format the next meeting uses because it will either be called a "Dinner” or a "Clinic”. Here’s the difference:

  • Dinner Meetings - Great place to connect with your peers through networking and a hot, tasty, sit-down dinner. The Meeting is centered around a featured speaker and topic. Dinner Meetings start at 5:30pm with an hour of networking. Dinner is served starting at 6:30pm. While enjoying your dessert and coffee, the audience will also engage with a seasoned speaker from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m.

  • ATDChi Clinics - In a more casual setting, Clinics provide a more in-depth coverage of valuable content for participants. Clinics begin at 5:30pm with networking. After a brief period of ATDChi announcements, the speaker will provide a longer session from about 6:45 to 8:30 p.m. NOTE: Clinics still have food! A light buffet style dinner will be served.

Okay, but what are your meetings really like? What do people wear? Do people drink? (I’ve heard about you learning and performance people!)

We are a fun but professional organization. Most people come right from work and are wearing business casual. Men will be in anything from nice jeans and a sports jacket to a suit and tie. Women often wear a similar range of clothing from pantsuits to sweaters and skirts. A cash bar is available at the start of Dinner Meetings but not Clinics. Such is the more relaxed atmosphere of Dinner Meetings. Clinics are sodas, coffee, water, and some serious content!

As for the people you’ll meet, some will be executives in the learning function of their company, some will be consultants / independent business people, and still others will be in transition – taking advantage of the networking opportunities at our meetings! What all our members have in common is a love of the industry and a joy of growing their understanding and experience. If you are generally nice to others and know how to laugh and "geek out” with other workplace learning and development professionals, you’ll be a hit in no time.

How do I register?
Upcoming events are available on our ATDChi events page.
Just click on the one you want and fill out the necessary information. Take note: you will normally get a discount on your event fees by registering before a certain date. And, as a ATDChi member, your event fees are always lower than non-members!

What if I require a special diet?
Not to worry. Each event’s online registration page will always provide you with options for restricted diets.

What else do you do?
We have various other meetings and functions from month to month. You might want to spend a day at a ATDChi Workshop or attend one of our Professional Development Networks. More about all of our different events is available on our ATDChi events page.


PART 3: The Larger Picture

Our larger organization ATD, and how we fit in as a local chapter.

What is ATD?
The Association for Talent Development is "the world’s largest professional association dedicated to the training and development field.” In addition to the many benefits they provide through their online library of resources, their monthly T&D magazine, and their numerous certificate classes in different areas of workplace learning and development, they host the ATD International Conference & Exposition every year. For more about ATD, check out their "About ATD” page: www.ASTD.org/About

What is the CPLP?
CPLP stands for "Certified Professional in Learning and Performance” and it’s the only learning & development credential offered. It was created by ATD and is awarded by the ATD Certification Institute. Getting your CPLP is a real achievement, and though relatively new, it is a credential for which employers are starting to look. For more information, check out the CPLP section of the ATD website: www.ASTD.org/Certification

What events does ATD have?
ATD handles several events across the country. The largest of these is the ATD International Conference & Exposition (ICE). Tip: volunteering at ICE is a great way to meet a lot of training professionals in a short period of time, and will get you a significant discount on the attendance fee. For more information on ATD’s national events, check out their event section: www.ASTD.org/Events


PART 4: The Inner Workings

More details about ATDChi and how it functions.

How big is ATDChi?
In terms of membership, we are one of the largest local chapters of the Association for Talent Development in existence. Geographically, our members serve the greater Chicago metropolitan area.

What’s the role of volunteers in ATDChi?
We keep it going! If you add up all the members over a given year who volunteer at one meeting or help out on a committee, the number can be in the hundreds. These volunteers are solicited and supported by the over 20 volunteers that make up our Board, Directors, and Advisors. You can meet them all here: Board of Directors

Interested in helping out? Send us an e-mail: melissa.erickson6@gmail.com

All right, who’s running this place?
ATDChi is run by members like you and is led by an all-volunteer Board.

Who does what? And how can I get involved?
Some volunteer posts are a one year term. Board Members are asked to serve a one-year term. Future Presidents are asked for 3 years: President Elect, President, Past President. (Don’t worry! We have a lot of opportunities for people help out at one event or another, without any long-term commitment. If you’re interested in helping, contact the Director of Volunteers at melissa.erickson6@gmail.com).
To find out who occupied these positions currently and how best to contact them, scroll through the list on our Board of Directors page at: Board of Directors



ATD Chicagoland Chapter
635 Perrie Drive, Suite 506
Elk Grove Village, IL  60007-7908

Phone: 872-228-7476  | Email: admin@atdchi.org

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