Having just organised the CIMA Members in Practise (MiP) two day annual conference – along with a great team – I thought it would be a good time to explore the theme of volunteering.
For most of us running our businesses is a fairly all consuming activity and we can generally fill every minute of our working day. This makes us feel that taking on any additional work as a volunteer would just be too much hassle.
However, I have found that unexpected dividends can come from doing that bit extra.
Firstly, I have been taken well out of my comfort zone. Accountants, even management ones, are not generally called upon to find great speakers on a limited budget, to fill a two day programme. We are not natural marketeers and struggle to ‘sell’ to anyone. But I have been forced to address these issues and conquer my natural tendency to avoid tasks I find difficult.
In the short, medium and long term this will stand me in very good stead when looking to grow my own business.
Secondly, I have been able to ‘give back’. When I started my businesses there were several key people without whose help my journey would have been much more tortuous. Top of the list of these key people were long standing MiPs whose insights helped me to make important short cuts.
Conference is a key way for new MiPs to take similar short cuts by getting the help of established members in practise and excellent CPD they may not have access to otherwise. So by being involved as a volunteer I feel I am thanking the guys who invested in me.
Finally, volunteering has helped me to make life-long friends with some really great people. I have got to know my fellow volunteers really well and feel I have broadened my support network in a way I would not have been able to do otherwise.
So if you have the opportunity to become involved – take it!!