I have blogged previously about the benefits of volunteering – within an organisation or in the community – as a way to boost your skills. Well I had the chance last week to add to Joel Kremer’s Linkedin discussion about the value of volunteering, and I thought it would be useful to you if I gave you the highlights of that post here. These ideas should be valid in the UK, the US, the EU or elsewhere around the world.
What Leadership Or Management Skills Do You Want To Develop?
According to the UK Commission for Employment and Skills there are plenty of managers who could improve their proficiency in several key areas, one of which matches your five point list: UKCES highlights that 32% of managers and professionals could be more proficient in Problem Solving (PS). What are the comparable figures where you are?
Taking action to volunteer could address a PS personal development goal. It could definitely benefit someone in a key organisational role, at the same time as benefitting the project’s customers.
How Can You Ensure Your Services Are Not Being Unfairly Exploited?
There’s a health warning though. Given the climate of limited resources and ‘more for less’ volunteers should not be used as cheap substitutes for paid staff. An organisation’s volunteering strategy should provide an authentic example of doing good for all concerned. It should provide positive benefits to customers whilst developing the volunteers’ skills and confidence (whatever their job title). If a volunteer feels their actions are being exploited they have to speak up.
What Support Could You Expect To Receive As A Volunteer?
In the example I gave above, good benefits could be achieved by the PS volunteer, as long as it was absolutely clear where the boundaries of that person’s volunteer responsibility lay. The volunteer’s learning would have to be fully supported by their project leader and her colleagues. Once their PS skills and confidence were good, or outstanding, they could continue to develop in different areas. Still offering really good service to the project’s customers as their learning continues.
How Are You Going To Learn By Volunteering?
Please use the Contact form above, if you would like to discuss coaching support to make the most of your volunteering plans.
Feel free to look at the further ideas relating to your work and life goals in the Archive section here, on Facebook and Google+ too. Or if you are a Linkedin user you can visit View Roger Dennison’s profile