From the time you apply to experteer to the time you complete your project, we’ll guide you through each stage of your journey — helping you create a bigger impact, and realize your own transformation along the way.
Our process, and the resources needed for each stage, is outlined in greater detail below. We’ve divided the process into 7 stages, taking you from first joining our platform all the way to becoming an alumni:
In order to be matched with a host organization, you’ll need to apply and be accepted into one of our three Experteering Programs, which you can learn more about below.
We’re here to support you throughout the process, even before you submit your application! If you’re not sure which program is right for you, you can schedule a free 1:1 consultation with a team member here.
Get matched to an Experteering project to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals. Receive support, training, and join our global community to build confidence and plan the trip of a lifetime. Learn more and apply here.
Our social impact and career growth program for professionals looking for more purpose in their work and to make a bigger impact with their careers. Uncover your unique personal and professional drivers, learn leading social impact frameworks like human-centered design and design thinking, and gain hands-on experience applying them to a real social impact project. Learn more and apply here.
Invest the time to complete your profile. It will help you be discovered by host organizations that have not yet posted projects — seeing your profile may inspire them to assess how your skills can support their work and then recruit you to co-design a custom project together.
For tips, check out our FAQ explaining what factors about you go into the matching process.
Engage with an organization to help teach a specific skill or resource (like training Excel skills, accounting best practices, git methodology, HR best practices, or marketing analytics to name a few). Usually, Experteers are expected to help develop the content and then conduct the training or workshop, with workload estimated at < 10h/week. See sample project here.
Support an organization get clarity about a certain area and better understand their needs around it. Have a 30-60min call to share your expertise about a specific skill and/or industry area, in a short one-off initiative. See sample project here. See sample project here.
Support a team with a specific task that has a clear deliverable, like designing a new website, setting up an accounting system, developing a marketing plan, creating an engineering schematic, or other skills-based projects. It can also be an opportunity to immerse yourself around a specific opportunity or challenge area. Give yourself enough time to learn community and cultural contexts, and then propose (and potentially implement) a plan to accelerate impact. Projects can vary greatly on duration and workload, so the scope should be well aligned between the Experteer and the Organization. See sample project here.
Be a coach to help social entrepreneurs develop their leadership skills, by using your skills and experience to support them to overcome their challenges. As a coach, you are not a subject matter expert but you will focus on the social entrepreneur and help them think through ways to grow as a leader and improve their social enterprise. This is usually done with a 30-60 min call per month and email exchanges, over 3-6 months.
Be a mentor to help social entrepreneurs grow their organization, by using your skills and experience to support them to overcome their challenges. As a mentor, you are a subject matter expert in the social entrepreneur’s industry and will help them think through ways to grow and mature their social enterprise. This is usually done with a 30-60 min call per month and email exchanges, over 3-6 months.
Browse organizations on out platform, and then message them directly to suggest a new project that aligns with their mission and your skills.
Not all volunteer projects are created equal. Make sure to find one that fits your skills and availability.
Our search tool helps you find projects that match your skills and interests. You can apply different filters to narrow the results down to just what you’re looking for. Don’t see the perfect project right away? We recommend that you:
After browsing, saving, and following projects and organizations, you’ll get a better idea of what’s out there or what’s missing. Don’t be afraid to suggest your own project if you don’t see what you're looking for listed! Our most successful Experteers take a collaborative approach with organizations to co-design projects that align with both parties' objectives. We recommend that you:
When you request an introduction, we recommend sending a simple message where you:
Here's a template you can use when you're ready to start requesting introductions.
Keep in mind that you can request an introduction to ANY project - even if it's not an exact fit. While our organizations have gone through the effort to post a specific project to MovingWorlds, often times they are only posting a fraction of the projects they actually need help with.
As such, if you read about a project and/or organization that is interesting, but not quite the right fit, you can still request an introduction to get the conversation started! Just make sure to be clear about your skills, availability, and what type of project you're hoping for instead.
In addition to making your own introductions, organizations seeking pro-bono support can also request introductions to you. When they do, be sure to respond within 24 hours with clear action steps. When you respond, we recommend you set up a time to talk as soon as you're able to keep the momentum going.
Once both parties are ready to connect directly, MovingWorlds will send an email to both you and the Host Organization. As the Experteer, you are responsible for “project managing” the process forward. Start by emailing with the Host Organization to set up an introductory call.
First: Gather helpful information about the Host Organization (mainly through its website and external resources) including:
Second: Take time to review the opportunity profile and project description. It’s normal to have questions, so write them down and prepare to ask the Host Organization on your call to ensure that you have a clear understanding of:
Note: You can refer to your Planning Guide, located inside your resource folder, to guide you through the call. On all of your calls, remember to take notes on everything. If you do decide to Experteer with that particular Host Organization, the information will be valuable for your Experteering Planning Guide further down the road.
Share information about yourself like your career goals, motivation for going Experteering, and other interests. During this phase, you and the organization representative are getting to know each other- help them picture how you could be an asset to their team!
Learn as much about the Host Organization and its needs as you can – think of it like an informational interview. MovingWorlds has already gathered information on the Host Organization and clarified the project and its initial scope of work, but it is still important for you to fill in the details that you need to determine if it is a good match for you.
At the center of every engagement is communication. If you can’t communicate clearly, the field engagement won’t work. Use this time to get to know each other and trade stories. You can start off by asking about the motivation for starting the organization, and learning more about the team behind the mission. Remember to ask about cultural differences and communication styles so you can be prepared to maximize your time on-site.
Is it a match? After your virtual meetings, you should have enough information to determine if the project is a good match for you. As soon as you make a decision, send an email to our Matching Team (firstname.lastname@example.org) to let us know whether you have decided to commit to working together or not.
Below are some helpful templates to communicate your intention with the Host Organization:
Congratulations! Let the Host Organization know by sending the representative an email similar to this e-mail template. Remember to CC email@example.com in your email.
Write to the Host Organization, thank them for their time and inform them why you felt it wasn’t a good match. Please be honest so that the organization can improve and our Matching Team can better support them in future searches. Also remember to email our matching team to let us know the match didn’t work and why so we can help you find a better match. You can use this e-mail template to get you started..
That's OK! Plan another call to ask more questions and discuss it further. Here is a template to request more information. In your second call, learn more about the following:
Note: Your Planning Guide, found inside of your resource folder, is a good place to get ideas for helpful questions to ask and things to consider for the follow-up call.
Once both you and the host organization representative confirm it’s a Match, our system will invite you both to work on the MovingWorlds Experteering Planning Guide together.
Please note that if you are participating in a premium program (such as the MovingWorlds Institute or a project sponsored by a company/foundation) you will receive additional information on next steps via email as well as separate content guides.
Take the on-demand MovingWorlds Experteering Best Practices training, which will be shared with you once you become a member.
In addition, you can connect with other Experteers, alumni, and MovingWorlds staff on our Community platform. Here you can learn first-hand from others who are currently in the field or have recently returned, work through challenges in real time. Our Matching Team is also available on the forum to respond to any questions you have!
Our system will invite you to view a planning checklist once you are matched. Everything listed on the checklist is important, and takes time to complete, so we recommend starting early! Be particularly conscious of your start date on this checklist.
Start working through this checklist, and turn to the MovingWorlds community and our FAQs for help.
If you'll be traveling for your project, you can also review our region guides for extra contextual information about the part of the world you’ll be Experteering in.
Work through the Experteering Planning Guide together with your host organization until it’s complete. Once you inform MovingWorlds that you’ve confirmed the Match, both you and your host will be sent an Experteering Planning Guide that is specifically created just for you and your host organization.
Once complete, sign and submit it to MovingWorlds via email at firstname.lastname@example.org to formally confirm the match and start your Experteering Engagement!
Please note: If you'll be traveling for your project, it is suggested that the Experteer Planning Guide is completed BEFORE the Experteer has booked travel arrangements to the Host Organization location.
If you’ll be traveling for your project, the Planning Checklist referenced above provides recommendations for arranging your travel.
Once you complete this, please update your dashboard with your travel details so we have current information and can support you in case of emergency.
If you’ll be completing your project virtually, set the stage for effective collaboration by agreeing to schedules and availability. Even just a short conversation up front about what technology to use and how you’ll use it can save a lot of time and headaches down the road. Make it easy to set up time with each other, even for just a quick check-in call, by using scheduling tools like Calendly. By addressing ideal times and methods to communicate, you’ll make it easy to empower and support each other. The planning guide referenced above will provide you guidance to confirm these details.
Note: Specific content access will depend on the program you choose. You can compare content access across programs here.
Once you join, you will receive access to the MovingWorlds Global Leadership Guidebook and invitations to monthly webinars with Industry Leaders.
In addition, you'll have access the MovingWorlds online Community forum to develop cross cultural leadership skills, gain exposure to different sectors, and explore current trends and challenges in the social impact space around the world.
Once you join, you will receive access to the MovingWorlds Guide to Social Enterprises.
Through monthly webinars and ongoing dialogue on the community forum, you will learn about the social impact ecosystem, the role that social enterprises play in global development, and the specific challenges they face as they scale.
Engage with current and past Experteers on the Community forum and MovingWorlds LinkedIn group. Better yet, take your interactions into real life and join an in-person meetup with other Experteers! Don’t see one in your city? Plan an event and we'll help you get it posted on the Community calendar.
Access case studies and monthly webinars to enhance your human-centered design (HCD) skills. See how your peers are putting their HCD skills into practice with in-the-field updates and get real-time advice on your own HCD initiatives by starting a discussion on the Community forum.
Take advantage of our social impact job board and join regular accountability groups to accelerate your social impact career.
In addition, MovingWorlds Institute Fellows will have dedicated work and career coaching sessions.
MovingWorlds will be building a career guidance community soon. Sign up here for updates..
Remember your training, and strive to use best-practices every day of your engagement.
Once matched, you will receive supplemental materials to help you make lasting change in the field. In addition, you can seek advice freely on the community forum and share your own experiences to help future Experteers be more effective on the ground.
In addition to the supplemental guides given to you for your Experteering project, use these additional resources to effectively integrate human-centered design best practices:
Whether you’re experteering locally, virtually, or overseas, there are many ways that your network, family, and/or friends can support your impact. But don’t jump at your first idea. Like everything related to your Experteering project, this should be done in partnership with your local organization so as to not distract local resources, create dependencies, erode dignity, and to ensure sustainability.
In addition to your own network, the MovingWorlds community is here for you, too. Make sure to take advantage of conversations in the Community forum related to human-centered design.
Perhaps more than any other contribution you will make, transfering skills and insights to the local team is one of the best things you can do while Experteering.
We’ll send you a survey when you get back. PLEASE complete this - it helps us improve and better support Experteers, like you, and the Host Organizations you work with. And who knows, your input could be included in our next thought-leadership piece (with attribution, of course!) and shape the future of the social impact landscape.
When you start your project, MovingWorlds will send you a guide that you can use to document your learnings as you go. This is optional, but we find that Experteers who use it end up with rich notes and memories. Our guide will then make recommendations on how to translate your experience and publicize your project in ways that will catalyze your career. We’ll invite you to share your story on our blog as well.
Reverse culture shock is a thing - whether you’re traveling for your project, or working cross-culturally on a virtual basis. Our guide will help you work through it. Process your experience upon your return by connecting with other Experteers, alumni, and MovingWorlds staff on the Community forum. Get and give advice on your reflection and reintegration process as you navigate this exciting next chapter of your life!
Once a MovingWorlds Experteer, always a MovingWorlds member. Your project may have ended, but your experience with MovingWorlds and experteering doesn’t have to. Upon completion of your project, you will be invited to join our alumni network of changemakers. Continue to learn and grow while building your network through conversations, meetups, and more!