Most of us have various organizations we volunteer for. It could be for your kids’ athletic activities, your church, or a local charity.
Usually we think of these in terms of being generous, supportive, and community-minded. Which is fantastic.
But have you given thought to how this can also support your career growth? Here’s how that can happen:
- You can learn skills which apply to the workplace. For instance, if you lead a team of volunteers, that experience directly applies to the business world.
- You’ll meet new people. We all know that one of the key skills of career advancement is networking, yet most of us struggle to develop those connections.
- You might be respected for your contributions. I’ve found many cases where interesting conversations open up about non-work activities, where people get a deeper sense of who I am and what I might contribute.
- You can be more inspired, even at work. When you believe your life is valuable, you’ll be happier in everything you do.
- You may find out key things about your future career. In fact, volunteering my coaching services was a key step to becoming a full-time business coach after I was laid off from my job.
- You can get introduced to a new organization. Many times there’s opportunities to get involved and make contributions in a volunteer capacity.
How do you go about finding valuable volunteer activities? Having some clear goals in mind will be a big help. For instance, if you need to get some management experience, then you may be able to gain those skills by managing volunteer projects.
You might be thinking about changing careers entirely. What a great opportunity it might be to work directly with people who are already doing that job! Is there a way to volunteer your time and energy for awhile? My son has done a couple of internships at local breweries for exactly this reason.
Go out there and contribute your time and energy. Do great things in the world. But also think about how your career improves as a result!