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How Volunteering Can Further Your Career

Searching for ways to enhance your life, both individually and professionally? Beyond the obvious reasons, volunteering can assist in these areas in more ways than one. Yes, this extracurricular activity is commonly known for serving the community and pitching in where people need help the most, but it can also help boost your career, while leading you to your next professional journey. Here are a few ways volunteering has potential to develop and enrich your personal branding:

Share Your Skills
Putting your skills to work naturally makes them stronger, but you can also use this opportunity to help organizations in departments where they may be lacking personnel or talent. Offering your expertise will be beneficial to the non-profit, while giving you the chance to take on projects of possible different nature than your day job. These services could range from training other volunteers on office administration duties to planning fundraising events – There is also opportunity to build a social media presence and / or recreate a website for the non-profit you are volunteering for in order to heighten the advocacy for that specific cause.

Build Your Resume
Employers are always looking for the bullets on your resume that differentiate you from other candidates. While community service is a common resume section, how you utilize your volunteer responsibilities will help you stand out in the crowd. This is also a great way to fill resume gaps for those who are unemployed – Showing you remained active during this time, while listing the role(s) you held while volunteering can only help in your job search. Overall, including these endeavors display your experience and how you use it outside of a 9-5 setting.

Network, Network, Network!
In-person connections have proven to be the most influential way to grow your professional network – Especially with those who share the same passion(s) as yourself. Volunteering provides an additional way to gain new contacts + community relationships, while strengthening your networking skills. You will have the chance to meet people who otherwise may have never crossed your path, and give yourself the opportunity to learn something new from each connection.

Allowing more experiences under your belt can only help you grow and learn more about the areas you strive in; The specialized tasks in which you excel. Volunteering shows future employers personal motivation in many areas, setting you apart from others in your field. And, while building your professional reputation, you are also helping your community in a charitable fashion – A win-win!