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Managing Voluntary Organisations: Enhancing Employability Through a Live Consultancy Experience 2005/6 Dr Eleanor Burt University of St Andrews.

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Presentation on theme: "Managing Voluntary Organisations: Enhancing Employability Through a Live Consultancy Experience 2005/6 Dr Eleanor Burt University of St Andrews."— Presentation transcript:

1 Managing Voluntary Organisations: Enhancing Employability Through a Live Consultancy Experience 2005/6 Dr Eleanor Burt University of St Andrews

2 What is the voluntary sector? The (voluntary) sector consists of a myriad organizational forms, governance structures, activities, sources of income and other support, expectations, intentions, constraints, histories, and futures (Salamon & Anheier, 1990). A loose and baggy monster (Kendall & Knapp, 1995). Formal, independent, non-profit, self-governing, voluntarist (NCVO Almanac, 2004). A set of organisations that offers a particularly challenging management experience

3 Voluntary Sector Employment Opportunities 1. Vital StatisticsUK 169,000 general charities 488,000 FTE paid employees total income £26 billion total assets £66 billion contributes £7 billion to GDP (before volunteering is added) average CEO earnings in charities with income of over £60m - £105,000 International voluntary sector voluntary sector expanding in USA, Europe, and the developing countries. [ Figures from the NCVO Almanac, 2006; and Hill, 2000]

4 Voluntary Sector Employment Opportunities 2. Key Industries Disaster relief / emergency services International aid and development Health Social services Education Environment Animal rights / welfare Culture & recreation Law / civil rights

5 Voluntary Sector Employment Opportunities 3. Key Recruitment Challenges r Leadership capabilities r Strategic management capabilities r Business skills [Futureskills survey 2003 in NCVO Almanac, 2004 ]

6 The Module Main Stages (A): the Underpinnings Stage 1.Applying for funding Stage 1. Applying for funding Stage 2.Detailed planning Stage 2. Detailed planning Stage 3.Writing the substantive materials Stage 3. Writing the substantive materials (eg briefings, de-briefings, letters to hosts) Stage 4. Administrative support Appointing administrative support Briefing the appointee and on-going liaison Stage 5. Host organisations Identifying host organisations Getting them on board Managing the relationship with hosts

7 The Module Main Stages (B): Teaching and Learning Stage 1. Classroom-based teaching – generic foundations Overview of the voluntary sector in the UK and internationally - origins, scope, scale, nature, significance, context, difference, challenges Stage 2. Classroom-based teaching – specific preparation for the live consultancy Academic literature Practitioner literature Lectures from practising managers Consultancy briefing Stage 3. The live consultancy – implementation and delivery In-house documents Interviews with Board, Executive Managers, professional staff, volunteers Analysis, written report, presentation to Executive Managers Assessment / feedback, including from Executive Managers

8 How did the Live Consultancy Enhance Employability? 1. Intellectual Capabilities and Applied Understanding Developing intellectual capabilities Learning about sectoral distinctiveness and the strategic management implications Learning to question Learning to manage complex information Learning to integrate academic theory and management practice Learning to analyse, reflect, understand, and explain Developing applied understanding Engaging with voluntary sector managers, professional staff, volunteers Experiencing the organisation and its environment from the perspectives of these groups Completing a strategic analysis Generating a management report

9 How did the Live Consultancy Enhance Employability? 2. Personal Attributes and Practical Skills Developing personal attributes Independence Responsibility Pressure Confidence Developing practical skills Time-management Organising Interpersonal Communication

10 What Did the Students Think About the Live Consultancy? Student 1 my experience at the Scottish Fisheries Museum was definitely one that i wont forget. it really brought the past few months of studying the voluntary sector together. i was able to experience first hand how organisations are run in real life settings and not through text book theory. i would seriously recommend doing a placement to anyone who wishes to gain a greater understanding of organisational culture and operations. Student 2 I think it was excellent practice of very useful skills. It gave us a chance to invest more in the outcomes of our studies; where what we said truly mattered. Student 3 more than any other time at uni I feel I have really gained a lot of confidence in public speaking, experience in working with Powerpoint and knowledge in how to perform a mini-consultancy. BUT – the majority of students decided not to take the module in 2005/6 as they felt that the live consultancy was too much in their Honours years. In the previous year 42 students took the module. This year only four students took the module.

11 What Did the Host Voluntary Organisations Think About the Live Consultancy? Host 1 It was a useful exercise and prompted me to think again about some aspects of the organisation. The broad focus of the case study was perhaps not as informative as a more in-depth analysis of a specific area would have been. However, it was an impressive outcome from a single day (within the organisation) – an extended project may be more practical if this could be arranged in future. Host 2 Perhaps a little longer (time in the organisation) and maybe problem-focused. As an organisation we welcomed the opportunity to work with the student and would recommend the experience to others. Host 3 I agree with the suggestion of considering a problem-centred study. A slightly longer placement time would have been good but this would need to be balanced by demands made on the organisations time.

12 What was the Module Leaders Evaluationof the Live Consultancy?Personal Satisfying, exciting buzz Hugely demanding of time and energy & stressfulProfessional Raised profile within local voluntary sector / developed contacts Not weighted/credited against overall work load, with implications for research & career.Practical Having an excellent placement administrator (I was extremely lucky this time) Finding organisations to host the placements (We had to work very hard on this.) Knowing enough about the hosts to judge their suitability (We were fortunate this time.)

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