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Professionals in the community service field work in places like addiction treatment facilities, community centres, and social assistance offices. They help clients access resources in the community. They monitor clients’ treatments and evaluate the effectiveness of those treatments.

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This field is the perfect choice for some people, while others won’t enjoy it as much. Before you pursue a career in this field, assess your qualities. If you have these five qualities, you may make a great community service worker.

1. Empathy

Empathy means taking on other people’s feelings and sharing their experiences. It means trying to put yourself in other people’s shoes to understand what they’re going through. Empathetic people are able to consider experiences from other people’s points of view, rather than their own. It’s an essential quality for people working in helping professions like community service.

Empathy is essential because it lets you relate to your clients and understand their experiences. This helps you talk about their problems and better help them. Many people are naturally empathetic and are suited for this field. However, empathy can be learned, if you really want to enter this field.

2. Organization

Are you disorganized? That can be an obstacle for aspiring community service workers. In this field, you’ll need to work with many clients at the same time. You’ll need to be able to keep track of all your clients, as well as their needs, wants, and challenges. You may need to work in multiple locations, which gives you even more to keep track of.

Organized people are able to create systems to stay on top of this information. They maintain organized filing cabinets, take good notes, and remember to fill out required paperwork. Disorganized people will struggle with these tasks and may become overwhelmed by the demands of the job.

3. Professionalism

Professionalism is important in many careers, but it’s especially important for community service workers. They need to know how to maintain professional boundaries between themselves and their clients. They need to avoid sharing too much of their own life stories with their clients, since doing so can be unsafe. They also need to avoid becoming friends with any of their clients.

If you think you’ll be unable to keep professional boundaries between yourself and your clients, you may want to enter a different career. On the other hand, if you know you can act professionally at all times, this career may be a good fit for you.

4. Patience

Community service work can sometimes be frustrating. Clients may not take your advice, or they may not follow through on their treatments. They may not remember to fill out necessary forms. As a professional, you can’t get visibly frustrated or annoyed with your clients. You need to be patient and continue to help them, even if they don’t seem to want your help.

If you find yourself getting annoyed or frustrated a lot in your current job, you may not enjoy this career choice. Of course, you could always take steps to develop patience.

5. Flexibility

Community service isn’t a Monday-to-Friday, nine-to-five job. It may require shift work or irregular hours. You may need to work evenings, nights, and weekends. You may work out of two or more locations during your work week. Travelling to visit clients is common. From one day to the next, you won’t have a regular routine.

If you thrive off a routine schedule, this schedule can be frustrating. This career choice is best for people who find themselves bored with routine schedules and want something more flexible.

 

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