Stand in the Gap

It’s fairly dumb… when you think about it. When you chart it on a whiteboard and stare at it for a while. Why does anybody decide to go work for a nonprofit? Can you even make any money doing that? (the name seems to indicate a real lack of profitability) In general, you’re going to work an excessive amount of hours averaging 60+ per week for an excessively low amount of compensation. Why, why, why would anyone do that? Or keep doing that? I have been for more than 14 years. Perhaps I’m fairly dumb… when you think about it. But the need must be met, and some of us are the ones who must stand in the gap on behalf of others.

3 Reasons to Work for a Nonprofit Today

It’s A Calling – Yes, we are starting with a cliche. Where else could we begin? Nobody with talent is going to work for a nonprofit without having a true, legit passion for the cause being advanced. You’re going to shed tears, sweat, and likely blood in your pursuit of success in this sector, and none of that is worth anything to you without a personal connection. If you have a deep yearning within to own property, retire early, and have any amount of disposable income, seek work elsewhere. If you want to toil and grind and accept only those recognitions that come in handshakes and smiles, then nonprofit is for you!

It May Be Your Why – We all have one. A why. Why we’re here… our purpose. Have you figured yours out yet? It could be within your work. We spend all of the best, most capable years of our lives working. Does your career have purpose? Do you have purpose? Perhaps those answers lie within the mission of a nonprofit. I did not know that my purpose would align with the nonprofit I chose to work for at the beginning. Fortunately it did, and in fact, my why (Why with a capital W??… idk) evolved and was only to be fully discovered a decade in to my profession as I gained new responsibilities and my true talent unfolded. Purpose is important, and you may be more likely to discover it pursuing a cause than a bottom line.

Someone Must Stand in the Gap – Nonprofit work, whatever the cause, is important. Invaluable. Without the effort that volunteers and staff give to impact these missions, the world would be an even darker place that it can feel at times. If not you, then who? Who will stand up and fill the gap on behalf of those who cannot? Who will ensure the future for our kids, our economic development, our ability to meet critical needs? I’ve seen so much talent come and go in the nonprofit sector. People who have the ability to capitalize on their gifts and make more money have gone on to do so. And good for them! Yet, there is a gap to fill. And there always will be.

I found my niche in the nonprofit world. And I have found it to be extremely profitable, despite it’s namesake. I have profited from the impact I’ve made and the growth I’ve experienced. But I’m just me. Just one. It will take many more to fill the gap. And I hope you’ll consider it – if not as a career, than as a volunteer cause to champion. Real talent is rare and fleeting, bring yours to bear on something that matters – stand in the gap on behalf of those who cannot stand for themselves.

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