There is a really nice piece in USA Today, July 22, 2011, titled, “Corporations add their know-how to charitable efforts.” The private sector has correctly recognized its “know-how” can be used to the benefit of the non-profit community. The article uses many examples, such as a Wal-Mart distribution team helping a local food bank with warehousing processes and storage.
From a career perspective, “giving back” has become increasingly more important, as large organizations pay attention to corporate social responsiblity (CSR – defintion by wikipedia) . Beyond the simple concept “volunteerism is good to do good,” your time commitment can show alignmenet with your organization’s broader commitment to the community. If your organization is commited to volunteering at certain locations, this can create opportunities to meet colleagues in other divisions of your organization as well as see colleagues outside of a work context. Finally, you could be meeting other volunteers from other organizatins who could be future clients, vendors, employers, references, etc.
Everyone benefits from volunteering, so get involved today!