The do-gooder in all of us sees the value in volunteering–but there’s significant self- interested career value in the investment of our time for social good:
- You will learn about yourself: Which role are you best suited for on a team? What part of a job gives you the most satisfaction? What type of people do you like working with? Learning these qualities about yourself on the job can be tough, because often you don’t get to chose. Figure these out as a volunteer and you’ll make better choices about the job you really want.
- You will make connections: I have landed 3 jobs and many more career opportunities directly linked to people I have met through volunteering. You are more likely to receive a referral from someone who has seen you in action than from someone you met at a networking event.
- Opportunity to demonstrate your leadership ability: You may not be the lead on a big project right away when you start your first job. But as a volunteer, there are fewer barriers to landing a project management role and showing what you have to offer.
- Become passionate and engaged: Finding meaning in a cause taps you into a life force that will ripple good vibes through all areas of your life.
- It’s fun! Work takes on a new form when you add the unique element of a team focused on doing social good. The happiness you experience will show through in how you talk about your accomplishments–and that is key to interview success!