What business can learn from volunteer organizations


Recruitment and Employer Branding are project related communication and leadership concepts that I’m working on now, as part of projects in STAGIS’ pipeline. That includes taking part in seminars and networks on Employer Branding. Here figures confirm that employees seem to thrive in job-change: Apr. 61% have been offered positions in other companies. 68% consider changing their job. 49 % don’t think they’ll be working for thir present company in just three years. Our Ministry of Employment tell, that more than 700.000 a year change their job in DK.

With the growing challenge for companies to attract employees, the unemployment rate in DK now also being as low as 86.000, demanding questions for businesses and organizations to ask themselves are:

"How can we recruit the people we need, to enhance our services, product development and business – what makes us attractive, in a way so that we can not only hire, but also keep our work force engaged? And how can we do better in competing for man and brain power, compared to other businesses and companies?"

Learn from your favorite volunteer organization
One way to develop your organization’s attraction factor on the job market is to let your Employer Brand be inspired by the high degree of engagement that characterizes successful voluntary organizations.

Even though we tend to spend many hours on our jobs, the interest in voluntary work in our society is still advancing impressively. Especially among young people. And in many different kinds of sectors and fields. One explanation could be the present prosperity in DK. Another, that people actually lack meaning and the sense of making a difference through their (paid) jobs; so they seek to give and be additionally fulfilled on this parameter other where.   
Volunteer_poster_15 Frivilligt_arbejde_14

Create loyalty on another levelMaslow_2

Sense of pride and meaning, humanity, thankfulness, sharing and being part of a larger and mutual beneficial ‘project’ are key words here – values, that most businesses would do good nurturing within their organization.

Why is that? Because with our present job-market, employees simply expect salary and workplace organization to be in order: The loyalty from co-workers and employees is to be build on another level of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, where softer values are present. Especially young people – Generation Y – seek value-based leadership, and to be part of organizations that clearly signal what they stand for and how they make a difference! They don’t want too easy solutions…

Give employees a reason to stay
Volunteer That’s why private companies may learn from the engagement to be found in volunteer corps or organizations. I’m not just talking CSR, even though this is a part of it – but also values, ethics, general meaning, ‘project-pride’ and community spirit!

So, with the weekend coming up and all, think about it: What characterizes your favorite volunteer organization, learn from it – and give your present and future employees obvious reasons to choose your project, spent half of their wake hours on contributing and sharing – and staying engaged.