The Top 10 Reasons to Be Thankful You Work at a Nonprofit

Since this is a “Top 10” list a la David Letterman, I thought I’d try a countdown. Click the arrows to scroll through the presentation. You can even watch this full-screen by clicking the ‘double-arrow’ icon in the lower right.

Joan Garry
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Joan Garry

Widely known as the "Dear Abby" of nonprofit leadership, Joan works with board and staff as a strategic advisor, crisis manager, change agent and strategic planner. Joan also teaches at the University of Pennsylvania with a focus on nonprofit communications and leadership.
Joan Garry
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  • Danielle Kempe

    Cynicism aside: I’ve been a fundraiser for over 7 years & I enjoy feeling that I have a personal part in improving lives. (I’ve been in the disease space for most of my NP career, so it’s funding research or treatment for individuals.)

    • Danielle. The nonprofit space is clearly lucky to have you. As I said, I went the humor route on this post but if you have been a blog follower I am a huge kool aid drinker for nonprofit service. Happy Thanksgiving!!!!!

      • Danielle Kempe

        Yup! I’m a regular reader and knew you were joking. 🙂

  • Nicole DeGuzman

    Because I’m making a difference in the lives of others.

  • Nicole DeGuzman

    I am thankful because: I make a difference in the lives of others.

    • Nicole! Here here! I decided to go the humor route but i could have done 10 really inspiring reasons. Glad you are adding here! Happy Thanksgiving!

  • Tim Cravens

    I’m grateful that I didn’t have to take off work today to deal with the leak in my condo’s bathroom ceiling because my organization is already working from home because the office was flooded by the sprinkler system getting set off over the weekend. 😉

    • This is HILARIOUS. I’m crying laughing at my office. Have a happy and dry Thanksgiving!

    • Dawn Glenny

      awesome response

  • Dianna DeCosta

    I am thankful because I am making a difference in the lives of the women I serve.

    • We all are. Thank you and Happy Thanksgiving

  • Jen Swan

    I am grateful because over the years I have learned about the kind of person I don’t want to be and the kind of person I shouldn’t be. AKA those people who are miserable at life, at their job, at whatever. I’ve learned who I NEED to be in this world.

    • Wow. Now that is an important lesson to learn. Happy thanksgiving!

  • Stacey Otte-Demangate

    Thank you for the morning laughter at such a crazy busy time for all of us nonprofits! But, seriously, working in nonprofits is an amazing way to be part of our communities and know that we help make them better in all kinds of ways.

    • I’m glad it made you laugh! And equally happy to see the pride you take in your work

  • Mary Fallon Hansen

    I am thankful to work in an atmosphere of positivity and a “people-first” kind of attitude. Our staff and volunteers are remarkable people who believe they can make a difference!

    • Mary. Coming to work every day surrounded by passionate and remarkable people is just plain awesome. Totally agree! Happy thanksgiving!

  • Parisa Parsa

    I am thankful to be part of an active, vibrant, hilarious and humble conspiracy of goodness. All year round.

    • Parisa. You must be good at your job if you have created an active, vibrant, hilarious and humble conspiracy of goodness. And I love that phrase. I may steal it. Just sayin’

      • Parisa Parsa

        I don’t think I can take credit for creating it, but I am glad to be steward of it!

        • Thank you ‘steward’ and Happy Thanksgiving!

  • Rosemary Pezzuto

    I get to stay up nights worrying about meeting payroll on more than new years eve.

    • Rosemary. Who needs sleep??? :)) Remember, the worry (and the solution) is not yours alone. Bring volunteers, board and others in to create a team working on a solution… Best of luck and happy thanksgiving!

  • Rosemary Pezzuto

    I also get to work with kids and their families in a hands on way helping them grow and learning from them

    • Rosemary. When a nonprofit gig is just right, you get as much as you give. Sounds like that’s what you’ve got. Lucky you. Happy Thanksgiving!

  • As a global medical society executive director, I am blessed every day with constant interaction with people from every corner of the world in several languages, struggling with huge projects that always seem on the verge of derailing, mini-office dramas that are actually very funny, and … the feeling that we are slowly but steadily DOING GOOD!

    • Luca. I bet your pace is much faster than you give yourself credit for. Also, glad that you find drama amusing. Is that what led you to my blog???? 🙂 Happy Thanksgiving and thank you for all you are giving .

      • Yes, only the progress is slow but the overall pace is indeed hectic. I am following your blog since 3 years, always find something relevant and useful in your posts. Happy Thanksgiving!

  • Ginger Young

    I am nourished every day by being part of something larger than myself. I love being disruptive. I am never bored. And it’s edgy, messy, complicated, creative, endlessly fascinating work!

    • Edgy, messy, complicated, creative, never bored, endlessly fascinating. Sounds a bit like my family at Thanksgiving 🙂 Keep on being disruptive!!!!!! Happy Thanksgiving!

  • Cindy Gregg

    I am thankful because I have a staff that is truly remarkable – I could not be an effective executive director without them!

    • Craig. I have this hunch that they are thankful for you too! Happy thanksgiving!

  • Jamie Parry

    I am thankful for a boss who listens and tells me on a regular bases how grateful she is for me to be on the team.