Guest Post by Sophie Ponting
Charity work is often considered the job of a volunteer who is prepared to work for little or no money and is rarely thought of as a very sensible career step. However, many charities offer programs for graduates that are seeking valuable work experience while working in the non profit sector before moving on to a more lucrative position in the private sector. Quite often this great experience comes at a price and you may find yourself working for a very low wage or even pro bono.
But with more and more charities realising that a solid full time staff to handle tasks such as administration and marketing is absolutely necessary, salaries have been on the increase in certain areas and now it is quite common to find very successful people who have started their careers with charities.
From work in charity roles or non profits organizations, talents can be further developed in at least two areas:
Talent Area 1: Leadership
Charities can be a veritable melting pot of people from various backgrounds, with differing personalities, and those with high moral codes, so taking on any leadership role while working in the non-profit sector takes a certain type of person that is totally dedicated to their job. Successfully leading workers that in many cases are there on a voluntary basis is no easy task and charity recruitment agencies work very hard to find the absolute best candidates with superb leadership qualities. It is for these reasons that many companies look to the charity sector when seeking new personnel for positions that require strong managerial experience.
Talent Area 2: Innovation
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that with over 180,000 charities in England and Wales alone, competition within the non-profit sector is big, and marketing departments and fundraisers alike need to come up with new ways to let the public know about their charity. While the days of door to door collections are by no means gone, there is now a demand for innovators that think outside the box and can help charities build more income and sponsors through great new ideas and approaches.
A CV that shows some carefully planned and innovative procedures that led to large corporate sponsorship or an increase in public donations will almost certainly make it to the top of the pile in any human resources department.
So whether you are a graduate seeking some much needed and highly valued experience or you are thinking about changing your career completely, working in a charity job within the non-profit sector should be a definite consideration for your first step on that ladder to greatness.
What are talents can you use and develop by working in non profit organizations? Join the conversation.
Sophie spends her spare time volunteering in the UK charity sector and is interested in helping out others and fundraising events. Her original interest in this came due to her association with TPP Not For Profit – UK Charity Recruiters, where she is based in London.
Join the Conversation
Leadership and Innovation Through Charity Roles
Great article on volunteerism. I do a lot of volunteer work in my community and it is like herding cats. Loved the points you make and I can see why companies give preference to those who have worked as a volunteer…it’s hard work!
Agree, LaRae. It can be hard work but, in the challenges, great skills and things happen! Thanks for your insights!
Yes I agree, what sort of volunteering opportunities can I expect to find in social enterprises?
Excellent post, indeed.
As you explained in your post, working in charities can do wonders in helping to develop one’s skills and competencies. Another sector, which can also offer great opportunites are social enterprises where profits are reinvested for social and environmental good.