Monday, May 15, 2017

Benefits of Volunteering

Author: Brad Humphrey, PMP
             Project Manager and Operations Manager

There are well known benefits to volunteering.  Many of these center around the “giving back” or “helping others in need” theme.  These are both noble causes.  However, job seekers should be laser focused on another benefit of volunteer service.  It’s a resume gap filler.  Prospective employers including recruiters and hiring managers are experts at reading resumes.   Actually, reading is not the right term.  They skim them in 6 seconds.  In that short amount of time, you’ve got to get their attention in a good way.  Time gaps with no professional experience will be obvious.  Avoid them at all costs. 

If you’re already volunteering, you just have to frame your experience in a few thoughtful bullet points.  Maybe you’re already contributing, however there is room for more.  Consider taking a committee chair position.  Accept an officer position.  Run a conference, event, or fundraising effort. These activities show initiative, organization, and leadership.  You are going to gain confidence, learn new skills and take on a new challenge.   As part of your volunteering experience, you will expand your network and meet new friends.  Most jobs are landed through networking.  You will have fun.  Step forward and conduct a speaking engagement.  It’s normal to be nervous.  All speakers are.  The more you speak, the better you’ll get.  Even great leaders and speakers are constantly improving their communication skills.

If you’re not currently a member of an organization, now is the time to join.  It’s not difficult to find a group.  There are associations for everything.  If you don’t know where to start, I recommend a professional organization.  These have the best chance of aligning with your craft and you’ll develop contacts in your field.  Local Chambers of Commerce and SCORE are great organizations.  Both provide advisory services to the arts and business sectors.  SCORE is dedicated to helping small businesses get off the ground.  There are over 320 local chapters.  The Philadelphia and New York Business Journals have a treasure trove of data in their respective Book of Lists.  Check out the section titled “Business Networking Associations.” Find one that interests you.  You may also look at or

I recently learned about an individual that spends half his time working and half volunteering.  He does not have to solicit business because of the contacts he generates through the public good.  I hope you’ve realized the multiple benefits of volunteering.  Make volunteering your current profession and you’ll be one day closer to landing your dream job.


  1. Brad..Thanks for the sharing.....agree - Great for our kids to understand as well as us....Hope all is well talk soon.... Best to you and your Family!

  2. Thanks Again - to a Genuine person of character!