Taking on a volunteering job without pay is one aspect of career-building that many never thought of considering. Offering to volunteer does not only grant one career experience but also an opportunity to vent one’s potential in a new environment. No doubt, through this kind of sacrifices many have secured themselves a lifelong career unanticipated.
As usual, I like to use myself as a case study. However, it has to do with my kid-brother who happens to be the last born in the family. He also attended polytechnic. In his case, it wasn’t because of money but he just didn’t meet up with the requirements, and I told him not to waste any more time. Two years later he was up for a year of industrial attachment, and he was paid. The company is a government parastatal. While guiding him, he told me that the environment was great. So I decided to coach and teach him how to build a working relationship as an intern so he can be relevant for a long while. Those working relationship tactics were for his future opportunities and goals.
He listened and went with my advice and guidance. Upon his completion of the internship, he followed through with my guideline so much that when he completed his HND, he was able to resume back as office assistant without pay immediately in 2018. Well, fortunately for him, as a big brother, I was the one paying him. Am sorry, he’s fortunate because big brother already paid the price and I wasn’t ready to let any of my siblings go through the hardship I went through, just to survive. Meanwhile, he was not paid any salary instead he was depending on side-tips without salary but he kept me in the loop.
8 months later, one of the big bosses called him up and offered him an intro to a CEO of a new airline. He was hired without an interview and today he is gainfully employed from being a volunteer to a paid staff. He is so fulfilled, hence fast becoming a Lagos big boy. Am excited for him.
Begin to explore the opportunity of starting your career as a volunteer while waiting for that big break. Let me share with you the tips I shared with my kid-brother:
- While volunteering, ensure you put in your best, with utmost discipline. I mean your very best.
- Be honest, respectful, punctual and be ready to serve.
- Go above and beyond while volunteering.
- Be sacrificial without expecting anything in return.
- Above all, be sensitive and proactive while volunteering.
Don’t get me wrong, this may be challenging without pay. Nevertheless, the opportunities are endless. Are you seeking to start a career, this might just be that opportunity you needed…. Try volunteering.