Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Don't Quit Your Day Job

At some point, almost all of us have wondered "what if?" when it comes to a new career path or entrepreneurial opportunity. I went through a phase years ago when I thought that I wanted to be an event planner. I had dabbled in some small-scale event planning and wedding coordination activities for friends, considered myself organized and creative, and thought it would be a good outlet for my talents and interests. So, when given the chance to chair a major fund-raising gala for a local nonprofit organization, I jumped at it! Long story short, after managing multiple nonprofit galas and fund-raising events, I realized that (for me) event planning is a nice place to visit - but I don't want to live there. Thank goodness I had the chance to "try it before you buy it" through volunteering. I came away from those experiences with a back-pocket full of great skills, but also the very important realization that it wasn't the career choice for me. Strategic volunteering, when used to its full advantage, can be like the grown-up version of an you the virtually risk-free chance to explore career opportunities.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

I'm Going to the Big Show!

Fun news! I was notified today about my selection as a presenter at the 2011 National Conference on Volunteering & Service hosted in New Orleans this June. My workshop will focus on helping organizations utilize the concept of strategic volunteering. With over 4,500 people expected to attend, this is going to be so exciting!

Here's my official workshop description:

Strategic Volunteering: Preparing Your Organization to Meet the Demand (1866)
Tuesday, June 7, 2011 8:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Location: MCCNO Room: 355
Opportunities for volunteers to align their professional development with their community service efforts are increasingly in demand. Learn what potential volunteers are looking for in strategic volunteering opportunities and how you can effectively structure your program to meet this demand. Get an insider's look at how to set your volunteer opportunities apart from others offered in your community and leverage the potential to create new corporate relationships...remember, the support dollars often follow great volunteer experiences! Leave with actionable next steps and templates to get you jump started.

About NCVS: Convened by Points of Light Institute and the Corporation for National and Community Service, the annual event provides attendees with an opportunity to learn, connect and be inspired through a wide range of exciting and informative plenary sessions, workshops, special events, service projects, exhibits, specialized corporate tracks and more. As the world's largest gathering of volunteer and service leaders from the nonprofit, corporate and government sectors, all are invited to join us in New Orleans. If you or your organization deals with volunteers in any capacity, this is an event you do not want to miss!