When Glenn Walker left Volunteering Otago last week it was to head to a new job as a technical specialist with the Intellectual Property Office in Wellington; another example of the win-win offered by volunteering.

A little over year ago, Glenn was struggling to get a job despite a Doctorate in Microbiology and years’ experience working at Otago University as a Teaching Fellow and as a manager of laboratory teams of up to 100 people.   Employers outside the University wanted examples of work experience in the “real world” so Glenn turned to volunteering as a way of adding skills to his CV.

Initially, Glenn helped Volunteering Otago with his specialist database knowledge but when they asked for help in a Client Account Manager role he enthusiastically took the opportunity, working closely with the organisations which use VO’s services to ensure their needs were met.   His talents were quickly recognised and Glenn was given responsibility for the oversight of the newly established Client Account team at Volunteering Otago.

Glenn helped select the volunteers, trained and supported them in their roles and carried out the full range of duties one would expect of a client account manager – and his experience certainly paid off when he applied to the Intellectual Property Office for an exciting position as a technical specialist, using his microbiology training.

“In the interview, most of the questions they asked were about working with people, Glenn explained.   “And every time they asked a question, I was able to give a real example based on my work with the Client Account Team at Volunteering Otago.”

And based on that experience, Glenn is more than happy to recommend volunteering as a way of adding skills to a CV.  It certainly worked for him and his knowledge and skills certainly made a difference to Volunteering Otago and the many organisations they support.

If you’d like to learn more about Glenn’s time at Volunteering Otago, check out this clip www.youtube.com/watch?v=zdGclIOV088