Many job seekers focus on their work experience and skills to the point where they neglect to mention in their resume how they’ve contributed to their community through voluntary service.
For example, an engineer in San Diego, California spent a couple of evenings a week holding and rocking premature infants in the nursery at a local hospital.
“They weren’t much bigger than my hand,” he remarked with a big smile. Such ‘work’ was the highlight of his week. And it said a lot about him.
He was a man of much more than math and science. He had a heart for babies.
A teacher spent one evening a week at a family shelter tutoring young children so they wouldn’t fall behind in their class work. This volunteer work blended beautifully with her paid profession as a college professor.
Many workingmen coach soccer and baseball teams on the weekend or volunteer raising money so underprivileged teens can go to college. In doing so they expand their own desire to keep kids from falling through the cracks.
Have you helped refugees learn English, bagged food and clothing for the homeless, visited the elderly in nursing homes? These are just a few of the many ways in which people of all walks of life help one another in their off-work hours. Maybe you’re doing something similar but you haven’t thought about how it can contribute to your resume when seeking employment.
If you’re an active volunteer in some segment of your community, don’t take it lightly. List it on your resume under the heading ‘Volunteer Activities.’ This item will not only show your compassion and commitment to people around you but if you are hired for the new position, it will also be good for the company’s reputation. In fact, you might even be the one to spearhead an outreach program at your new place of employment—one that will bring attention to the organization and goodwill to the neighborhood or city in which you live and work.
Take a moment to jot down your own volunteer commitments. It can be very satisfying to see them on paper and to know that you are making a difference in the lives of other people.
When you are called for an interview and the hiring manager asks for additional details about the information included in your resume, feel free to talk fully about your volunteer work as well as your paid work. You can indicate that employee volunteerism doubles as a form of publicity for the organization’s products and services, as well as spreading trust in the community.
Hiring managers will see that you’re not only skilled, but also generous with your time and talent and have the ability to balance career and social involvement. Now, who wouldn't want to hire a person who is capable of doing an excellent job at work and also being present to others in need?