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Give Back as an IIBA Volunteer

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and may not reflect the perspectives of IIBA.  
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December 5th marks International Volunteer Day. Volunteering is at the heart of IIBA, without volunteers we wouldn’t be able to continue growing! Nearly all our processes include the hard work of our volunteers.

“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” — Mahatma Gandhi

Now, perhaps more than ever, compassion and solidarity are needed in the world. That makes today, International Volunteer Day, resonate a little more than usual.

Volunteering is a selfless act—making a positive difference because you can, not necessarily because it benefits you. It’s about putting the needs of others first, recognizing that giving is its own reward, an end rather than a means. Amid rising tensions and increasing polarization, International Volunteer Day reminds us of our innate capacity for kindness and humanity.

And inspiring examples are everywhere.

That spirit of giving back is at the heart of IIBA, which began as a volunteer-run organization. Thousands of IIBA members around the globe serve as volunteers, contributing to the evolution of the profession and the growth of our diverse community. Each year on Global Business Analysis Day, we celebrate them with the Volunteer of the Year award. It’s our way of encouraging those who are changing the world for the better, no matter how humble their contribution.

Whether you volunteer for a non-profit organization, a social service agency, a cultural institution, or even a neighbour in need, you’re making a positive impact on the lives of others—and your own, too. In honour of International Volunteer Day, here’s a look at how IIBA volunteers contribute and how you can get involved in your community.

Volunteering Takes Many Forms

Because there are so many different opportunities available, IIBA volunteers bring a little bit of everything to their role. In fact, the profile of our volunteers is as varied as the projects they work on.

Over 1,500 volunteers dedicate their time to support IIBA activities and the global business analysis community. Some of them are regular writers for our blog or magazine, and some shape their local communities as chapter leaders or committee members. Others mentor fellow business analysts or help our seminar attendees engage in meaningful, skills-building work.  

Our volunteers aren’t only helpers, though. They’re also learners, who gain valuable skills and insights by working with people from different backgrounds and cultures. They build friendships and networks with other volunteers who share their values and vision.

Regardless of how they contribute, IIBA volunteers are a fast-growing group. Over the last year, more and more people have expressed an interest in giving back to the business analysis community. And they’re doing so from every corner of the globe.

Most IIBA volunteers hail from India, Nigeria, Canada, Australia, the UK, and the US. But there are 16 other countries that are home to at least 10 IIBA volunteers. That global lens ensures a diversity of opinion that informs our webinars, initiatives, think-pieces, and intellectual property.

And since we’re a fully remote organization, there are far fewer barriers to giving back than most organizations. All you need is a computer and a stable internet connection. For volunteers looking to make a difference in business analysis, the doors are wide open.

Recognizing Generosity and Dedication

Through the Volunteer Awards Program, IIBA acknowledges the outstanding contributions of volunteers to the business analysis profession within their communities. If you’ve contributed to the profession in the past year or know someone who deserves recognition for their efforts, submit a nomination for our 2024 Volunteer of the Year awards.

Each year, IIBA’s Global Chapter Council and staff review all nominations and determine award finalists and winners, which are then announced on Global Business Analysis Day. For a full list of this year’s nominees and winners, check out our awards page.

It’s important to recognize the achievements of volunteers because their contributions should never be taken for granted. Volunteers are the backbone of our organization. Without them, IIBA wouldn’t be able to support as many business analysis professionals as it does, and reaching aspiring business analysts around the world would be a challenge.

They inspire us with their generosity and dedication. They make IIBA's mission possible. They lead by example. And we’re incredibly lucky to count on them, every day.

More Volunteers Are Always Welcome

We’re always looking for people to help with IIBA initiatives. From volunteering at chapter events to participating in forums to help set the future of IIBA, there are many ways to give back while building skills and confidence.

Volunteering is a great way to share your skills, talents, and passions with others while learning new things and meeting new people. Plus, you can explore your interests, bolster your resume, and earn valuable CDUs.

But, mostly, volunteering just feels good. If you want to start giving back through IIBA, express your interest now! You’ll be informed about all our volunteer opportunities.

I’ll close by giving a big THANK YOU to all the wonderful people who have helped advance the profession over the past year. Your hard work, dedication, and unwavering support are an enduring source of inspiration.

Happy International Volunteer Day!

About the Author
Michelle Spences-Lee

Michelle Spences-Lee is a dedicated and passionate individual with experience in various remote support and coordination roles. Michelle has a strong customer focus, high energy, and great organizational skills that are key to her work coordinating IIBA's volunteer program. She actively engages with both internal stakeholders to determine the volunteer needs and communicate and collaborate with the business analysis community to recruit, nurture, and build relationships with our volunteers. When she is not working you can find her travelling the globe from her home in Toronto.  


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