Have you recently found yourself unemployed? Downsizing and other unfortunate circumstances can make jobs disappear at the drop of a hat, leaving you disgruntled and at a loss for what to do next. It might seem like you should devote all of your unexpected free time to networking, resume restructuring and interviewing, and those things are definitely important. But one of the best things you can do for yourself and your career is to become invested in a volunteer project. Take a look at these 5 reasons why volunteering can help you find a new job:
It fills the gap in your resume. For potential employers, a few missing months on your resume can raise some red flags. Even if it takes a while for you to find a new job, volunteering demonstrates your initiative and determination to continue building your experience.
It gives you new skills. Chances are that volunteering will require skills that wouldn’t be utilized in a typical office job. Diversifying your skill set will make you a more attractive potential employee, and stepping outside of your comfort zone will force you to be more creative.
It allows you to meet new people. Believe it or not, volunteering is a fantastic way to build your business contacts. Who knows? The guy that’s helping you hang drywall for Habitat for Humanity might know of an opening in his office that would be a perfect fit for you. Even if it doesn’t lead you to new employment opportunities, you’ll expand your social circle with great friends and acquaintances.
You just might find a new passion. Maybe you’ve never gotten the chance to manage social media for an organization or get really creative with graphic design. Maybe you weren’t aware of a social issue that is now extremely important to you. Several entrepreneurs were motivated to start their organizations because of meaningful volunteer experiences that they had. Whether or not you choose to turn it into a career, a new interest or cause is a positive thing to cultivate.
It can boost your confidence. After losing a job, it’s easy to start doubting yourself and your capabilities. Dedicating time and energy to helping others will get you out of your suffocating self pity by refocusing your mind on something that has meaning and purpose.