Volunteers are the driving force behind Taproot pro bono. Right now, tens of thousands of business professionals have signed up to generously donate their skills and time to nonprofits in our community. But why do they do it? Why are they so willing to share their valuable expertise for free?
The honest answer: it varies. In Taproot’s 20 years of experience, we’ve heard from countless volunteers on why they continue to give their time and expertise through pro bono. While we’d love to list them all, here are a few motivating factors that Roots (Taproot employees) hear frequently.
Flexing your professional skills
Whether you’re in the middle of your career or looking towards retirement, keeping professional skills sharp is always important. For folks who’ve advanced to working in management, pro bono can be a great way to reconnect with the day-to-day tasks needed for execution versus strategy. For professionals who feel as if they could do their job with their eyes closed, partnering with a new organization and flexing their talents in new, creative, or fun ways is a great experiential learning opportunity. And for people in the midst of a job change or have retired, volunteering with nonprofits is a great way to keep all that knowledge and experience top of mind! Pro bono is a great way to stretch existing skills and rack up additional project management and leadership exposure—all while making an impact on your community.
“Pro bono can help folks considering at retirement figure out how they can continue to leverage their professional skills to give back.” – Juliette Hackett, Senior Associate Consultant
“Getting to use your professional talents through pro bono is an awesome way to recharge your creativity and step outside of your everyday comfort zone all while making an impact.” – Hannah Vona, Marketing and Communications Associate
Building deeper connections
In the era of work from home and online events, feeling connected to your community and a greater network can feel difficult. Volunteering through pro bono can be a great way to curb that sense of isolation. Taproot programs such as Pro Bono Marathons and Speed Consulting events give people the chance to not only interact with nonprofit leaders, but team up with other professionals who work in similar fields.
“Program participants share that pro bono is a chance to connect with new people, especially during COVID-19. Working virtually can be hard, but I’ve been impressed with how gelled volunteer teams are when their only experience with one another is a pro bono program” – Toria Isquith, Associate Consultant
“Volunteering helps build new connections and relationships with fellow volunteers and with nonprofit organizations. I’ve even seen some pro bono consultants go on to be a part of a nonprofits board of directors!” – Andrew Mahoney, Consultant
Finding personal fulfillment
Volunteering feels good! Sharing your time and skills through pro bono is no different. For those passionate about social change and community building, pro bono is one way to lend support to organizations moving the needle on important issues—from criminal justice reform to sustainable agriculture. Everyone feels accomplished after tackling a big challenge, especially if that challenge is affecting a cause near and dear to their heart. This desire for purposeful work is what has many volunteers coming back to do pro bono again and again.
“Giving back through pro bono makes me feel more connected with causes that I care deeply about. As a Root, I get the chance to broadly support nonprofits across issue areas. As a Taproot volunteer, I get to focus in on mission areas where I want to impact even greater change.” – Kimberly Swartz, Marketing & Communications Manager