5 Ways Volunteering Can Help You To Get a Job

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volunteering-8568539A guest post by Jacelyn Thomas

Joblessness is as close to nothingness as most people can come. Often workers feel spiritless and purposeless when unemployed, which makes the search for a new job all the more difficult, and the melancholy when they aren’t immediately placed all the more profound.

Though it can be discouraging to be out of work, instead of spending half your time applying to new jobs and the other half worrying about your unemployment, consider committing some of your time to a volunteer organization. Though you will be working for free (or pro bono), volunteering can transform your attitude, and — equally important — will keep your skills sharp, and fill in the periods of unemployment on your resume, which will be a valuable asset the longer you are without work.
When volunteer you:

– Feel better about yourself. Job coaches everywhere concur, as certified job coach Donna Schilder will attest: out of work people “completely lose confidence and don’t interview well.” Volunteering helps turn your attitude around, and improves your interview performance.

– Hone your existing skills. Especially for craftsmen and women, being out of work can mean losing the edge they had on their craft. As a volunteer, you will have the opportunity to keep your skills sharp and ready for the next job. Plus, when you volunteer, you …

– Can learn new skills. You never know what will be asked of you in a volunteer situation. Sometimes you might be doing something you’ve never done before, and by the end of your service work will have mastered a completely new skill that you can put on your resume and will help you find a new (and probably better) job.

– Don’t have any gaps in your resume. Having large gaps of employment that can’t be accounted for on your resume hurts your attractiveness to potential employers. When you volunteer, keep track of your achievements, responsibilities, and contributions, and you will be able to explain every gap, and impress your employer with your altruistic attitude, as well.

– Expand your job search and network while you work. An important part of volunteering is networking with the people with whom you volunteer. More often than you might expect, volunteering with a non-profit organization leads to a job in the for-profit sector, just by virtue of the people you meet while working. Sometimes you might even land a job doing something you never knew you always loved. Plus, working in the non-profit sector might open up future business opportunities.

Keep your ear to the ground and keep your mind in the right place, and you’ll be back on your feet in no time.

About the Author: This is a guest post from Jacelyn Thomas. Jacelyn writes about identity theft prevention for IdentityTheft.net. She can be reached at: jacelyn.thomas@gmail.com