Monday, April 18, 2011

Volunteer to Get an Edge

Some job seekers are adding another tactic to their traditional job search: volunteering.

Here's how to strategically volunteer to land a paying gig.

* Find a volunteer position that relates to your chosen field, suggests Artie Lynnworth, author of "Slice the Salami -- Tips for Life and Leadership, One Slice at a Time." The Taproot Foundation matches professionals who have experience in human resources, management, marketing or information technology with nonprofits that need the expertise. provides broader matching services.

* Trade your time for new skills. Because it's not paying you, a nonprofit may be more willing to let you take on new tasks or learn new skills in ways a paying employer might not encourage.

* Be patient. One of the biggest benefits of volunteering may be meeting new people -- board members, employees, other volunteers -- who can help you find a new or better job. But that doesn't happen overnight.

—Catey Hill

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