Today was a pretty special night. There was a great panel discussing the viability of Vancouver’s future and a handful of amazing videos by some CYP teams that are planning for the future.
What made it unique was receiving my certificate of engaged leadership from the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade. Most volunteers never get rewarded or recognized for their volunteer efforts, but the GVBOT has made a point of doing so. The certificate, which I encourage all young leaders to go after and other organizations to create, is earned through volunteerism, leadership and collaboration with the signature programs of the GVBOT.
I’ve had the pleasure of working with their team and other amazing people in the Leaders of Tomorrow Program
(as a Mentee, committee co-lead, and advisory board member), Company of Young Professionals
and Small Business Council
(Communications Committee) to further the initiatives of each program. That all sounds daunting, but every moment has been enjoyable because the board has allowed volunteers to contribute in efforts they are passionate about or leverage their expertise.
I encourage everyone to start volunteering, get involved in their community and participate in the same way:
Find your Passion by getting out in environments that aren’t work or purely social. I think this middle ground where you are doing something for a cause, yet don’t have to be in a formal working capacity is a valuable way to spend time. The different tasks that you can be assigned to might open up your eyes to new interests or your passion. Most people aren’t lucky enough to be doing what they love for work, but you might just find it through your volunteerism.
Use your skills for good and to help. I don’t think any non-profit would turn away free skills. Most have limited budgets and really appreciate the helping hand from someone with expertise in a certain field. While that may not always be an open door, or perfect fit, do your research and see how you can add value. Maybe you have photography skills and the organization could use some PR help. What if you rock at social media? Help the organization you choose to expand their presence on social. No matter the skillset you have, find applications within causes you are aligned with.
Meet new people through organizations and your volunteer efforts. Rarely do your work colleagues and your family or friends align. We typically have different circles for each thing that we do. I have found it very valuable to be around like minded people while participating with GVBOT. I know walking into an event that they are all there for a reason attached to their personal development, work or business. The conversation can be easier to start and relationships are much stronger and easier to foster.
I’m happy to be earning this certificate from the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade, but its only the start. Not the finish of what we at Tangle would like to accomplish with our involvement in our local business community.