Edited by Ans De Vos and Beatrice I.J.M. van der Heijden
Chapter 6: Career capital acquisition through corporate volunteering
More and more organizations promote employees’ engagement in corporate volunteering initiatives. Such initiatives are tuned towards developing organizational legitimacy and image branding in the eyes of different stakeholders. However, a growing number of studies are beginning to signal that volunteer experiences can also help employees to develop new skills and competencies. This chapter presents a qualitative case study of corporate volunteers in the Netherlands, exploring the benefits of corporate volunteering for both individuals and organizations. Specifically, it investigates how corporate volunteering contributes to employees’ career capital development and how and for what purposes employees apply this career capital upon returning from volunteering. The study shows that through corporate volunteering employees develop psychological, human and social capital. In turn, employees use their capital to contribute to organizational culture, capabilities and connections upon their return. We discuss these findings in light of a ‘matching process’, where sustainable careers can contribute both to individuals’ employability as well as organizational development.
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