IABC Victoria is calling for Board and general volunteers… and that means a great career opportunity for you.
Why would I volunteer with IABC Victoria?
Not everyone knows that IABC Victoria’s Board are all volunteers. People join the Board for a wide range of reasons, including to:
- Build their network – both locally and internationally.
- Learn new skills or build and strengthen existing skills.
- Learn more about governance, to prepare them for future paid board roles.
- Give something back to the profession.
- Build their confidence, particularly in public speaking.
- Gain leadership skills.
- Raise their profile.
So, do their dreams come true?
Speaking to a number of former board members, it’s seems they do indeed. Here are some comments from a couple of of previous leaders:
Not only did I learn and experience what being part of a volunteer board meant but I also met some wonderful and very insightful people, many of whom I am still in touch with. They have continued to help me along my career path or just been there to answer questions/share ideas on a particular project I might be working on.
It was hard work being on the Board but it was very rewarding and wonderful to give back to a profession I love. It is great being part of instigating initiatives to enable knowledge sharing and in turn grow and strengthen the profession.
I also loved that fact that we were part of a Global organisation, learning from different cultures from across the world. I found all the volunteers had the same drive and desire to give back and share knowledge.
I moved from Sydney to Melbourne and needed to build a network. I also wanted to put back into the profession having received some great advice, generous introductions and “breaks” from those I encountered in my early days in the industry.
As a result of my involvement, I gained an international business network; doors opened and job opportunities emerged. I was the sole communications resource in our business. Through my role on the IABC Vic Board I found valuable support and a sounding board to help me navigate professional challenges. Taking on a leadership role was a great personal and professional development opportunity. This supplemented the development acquired through paid employment…but beyond that I gained a genuine international network of wonderful friends.
But wait, there’s more!
The London School of Economics examined the relationship between volunteering and measures of happiness in a large group of American adults. They found the more people volunteered, the happier they were, according to a study in Social Science and Medicine. And, at IABC Victoria, we do try to have fun!
It sounds great … so why doesn’t everyone do it?
People don’t put their hands up to be involved for a number of reasons. The most frequent concern is about how much time it will take. Different portfolios require different amounts of work… some roles take four hours a month and others eight hours, depending on what is happening. And of course, the role of President can take a day a week.
But we all work closely together, backing each other up and sharing the load. And if a role is too onerous, there are always volunteers to help lighten the load. Or, we split the portfolio.
I don’t want to be locked in …
Potential volunteers are often concerned about being ‘locked in’ to something. Terms on the IABC Victoria Board last for either one or two years. But we recognise that life can change – new job, children, carers’ responsibilities – or sometimes the role just isn’t what people expect. If that happens, people leave the Board during their term and we declare a casual vacancy or share the load.
Can I volunteer, but not be on the board?
Absolutely! We recognise that some people can’t commit long term, but still want to be involved. There are plenty of projects where people can help out – such as redeveloping the IABC website; or managing our social media activity for a couple of months; or helping to plan the annual Gala. You can do as much or as little as you like, for as long as you like.
No one has ever asked me to help out …
We know another reason people don’t volunteer is that no one asked. Well, consider this your personal invitation. We currently need a few more people to help out – either to work with current Board members on their portfolio, or to undertake discrete projects. And, with several members rolling off the Board next year, we are also starting the search for new Board members.
So if you have any interest in volunteering – either in formally joining the Board, or just lending a hand – please get in touch. We’d love to talk to you more about what’s involved and help you make an informed decision.