I’ve volunteered my time in one capacity or another for many years and I’ve always enjoyed it and gained from the experience. It’s just something I do, but if you asked me whether I’d recommend it, I’d wholeheartedly say yes, Why? Well, here are just a few benefits of being a volunteer.
The skills I’ve developed from scratch, or fined tuned through volunteering is endless. I’ve learnt from experts and role models, learnt by doing it “on the job” and steadily built experience. Teaching, presenting, project planning and chairing meetings are just a few of the skills I’ve honed through volunteering. Volunteering can also be a fantastic way of filling gaps in your CV prior to your next career move.
I’ve been inspired by people I’ve met in a voluntary capacity and gone on to develop friendships. I’ve had contacts turn into clients on the basis of working with them on projects, or from them seeing the work I’ve produced pro-bono. I’ve made connections with people I may otherwise never have met within the local area and nationally within the sectors or retail and place management based on my voluntary work, and these are connections I highly value.
Sometimes we all have a dip in confidence and doing something you’re good at and working with a team to deliver exciting projects can both give you a confidence boost. It could be you just need a few more hours gaining experience before you’re confident enough to add it to your portfolio of services or to your CV.
That Feel Good Factor
Seeing what you’ve accomplished as part of a team can just make you feel good. It’s job satisfaction.
Corporate Social Responsibility
Corporate Social Responsibility is not just for the big brands. Giving back is something the smallest of businesses can do, and it doesn’t have to be financial, you can give your expertise or time supporting local causes or projects. Conscientious spending isn’t just about retail customers, potential clients torn between two providers may just select you based on your brand ethics and your entire portfolio of work.
How to take it forward
Choosing what you volunteer for is personal. Consider your skills, what you enjoy doing, the needs within your community and what availability you have to support that. After that, look for the opportunities (or even create them) and enjoy getting involved. You never know where it might lead you.