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Being able to manage your time is something that many employers look for. It shows that you are able to prioritize, plan and get things done. Moreover, it demonstrates your organization skills and desire to be productive.

There is a wide range of skills that many students have acquired throughout their years of schooling, part-time jobs, as well as volunteer experiences. I find that we often overlook the value of these skills or may not even acknowledge them at all. Below, is a list of three employability skills that I feel you are most likely to gain through volunteering.

1. Communication

The majority of volunteer roles will require that you work with other people. Whether that be working with fellow volunteers or members of the public, you are sure to work on your communication skills. By working with other people, you are learning how to write and/or speak to other people in a clear manner.

How is this an employability skill?

Communication is key! It is important to develop this skill because many jobs require you to work with other people, give presentations, as well as express yourself in writing. This skill is applicable to practically every job – it just so happens to also be one of the most common skills that we build as volunteers.

2. Interpersonal

Interpersonal skills develop alongside communication skills and in my opinion, these two skills go hand-in-hand. Again, by working with other individuals and/or the public, you are learning how to work in a team, or even how to take on a leadership role.

How is this an employability skill?

Being able to work in a team is an asset to many employers. It is important that you learn how to work in a team – whether you are a team player or playing the role of team captain.

3. Time Management

As a volunteer, you will find that you must treat your volunteer role(s) like a job. As university students, it is already quite difficult for many of us to balance our schoolwork, part-time jobs, friends and family, hobbies and sleep – let alone volunteering. Thus, if you are a committed volunteer, you will learn how to manage your time.

How is this an employability skill?

Being able to manage your time is something that many employers look for. It shows that you are able to prioritize, plan and get things done. Moreover, it demonstrates your organization skills and desire to be productive.

There are many other employability skills that you may gain through volunteering. The three that I mention above are what I feel are of the most value to employers as well as being three core skills that one may gain from any volunteer experience.

Which employability skills do you think are the most important to employers? What other employability skills do you think you can gain through volunteering? Comment below!

SFU Student
visibility  54
Oct 1, 2014

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