Volunteering Can be a Path to a New Job or Career
By John Yurkschatt, Director of IT, DCA
There are a number of obvious benefits to volunteering including feeling good, giving back, and making a difference in your community. But volunteering is a great way for you to find a job or new career. Here’s how it can help:
Volunteers are desirable to employers. Employers like to hire people who can demonstrate that they are committed and hard-working even though they did not get paid for their efforts.
Volunteering can expand your professional network. If you can find a volunteer position within your field, you will have the opportunity to network with people already working in your target field. As you probably already know, networking is the #1 way to land a job these days.
Volunteering lifts your spirits. Taking time to help others increases your sense of usefulness and well-being. It’s keep you healthier as well. In turn, you’ll gain a positive mindset which is extremely critical for finding work.
Volunteering can help hone your skills and offer new ones. If you’re a seasoned professional, you can put your skills to good use. You can also use this opportunity to develop new skills like project management, time management, leadership, strategic planning, etc. The organization gets the benefit of your unique abilities and you’ll have a list of new accomplishments to talk about during your next job interview, which might lead to an offer.
Volunteering can fill in employment gaps. If you have suffered from long-term unemployment, volunteering fills the gap on your resume and shows you’re committed to the community. It can also earn you references, which could be key to getting back to work after a long absence.
Volunteering gives you a track record for a cause. Non-profit organizations value their volunteers. If you demonstrate hard work and commitment to their specific cause, they may take notice and hire you. Keep in mind that non-profit organizations are potential employers.
If you found a job through volunteering, let us know your story.