top 10 for purpose dream jobs header

By Rhiannon Robinson


Are you mindfully working towards your dream job? Or are you unsure what your dream job even is?

Career planning can be tricking in the For-Purpose world, with less clear progression within organisations and a tendency towards the squiggly line career model. But it is possible to get clarity on your dream For-Purpose role, and start honing your skills towards it.  It’s important to think about what you would enjoy doing in your dream role day-to-day, as well as how important salary is to you.

It’s an exciting time to be working in the For-Purpose sector, with lots of innovation creating new types of roles that will meet the challenges of the post-Covid-19 world.

We’ve done the hard work of compiling ten contemporary dream jobs for ‘do-gooders’ in Aotearoa for you to explore. Could one of these be your next career move or stretch goal?


#1. Director of Philanthropy

Expected salary in Aotearoa: $90,000- $130,000 p.a

A Director of Philanthropy is a senior leadership position, with strategic oversight across regular giving, fundraising and legacy programmes. A role usually found at large not-for-profits and charities, a Director of Philanthropy supports a wider fundraising team and is responsible for the generation of income and the maintenance of key relationships. They work with the wider leadership team on creative projects and report to the board on donor income. The work a Director of Philanthropy does directly contributes to the impact an organisation is able to make.

Essential Skills: Relationship management, strategic planning and project management, leadership, mentoring & coaching

This job is for you if you’re: A strategic thought leader who loves tangible results and winning hearts and minds for the cause

#2. Chief Culture Officer 

Expected Salary in Aotearoa: $80,000- $110,000 p.a

A Chief Culture Officer sits within the leadership team and aligns an organisation’s goals and values with the behaviours of its employees. This role ensures that the organisation has a healthy culture where employees can thrive and perform, and that the organisation is keeping pace with modern working practices. A Chief Culture Officer may have oversight of organisational design, employee benefit programmes, attraction and retention strategies, on-boarding and orientation materials, and culture boosting programmes like mentorship and workplace volunteering. They often organise employee events, training programmes and performance incentives.

Essential Skills: Learning design, strategic communication, HR and Recruitment knowledge, thought leadership

This job is for you if you’re: Someone that loves helping others reach their potential, a systems and productivity nerd with your finger on the pulse of the future of work

#3. User Experience (UX) Designer and Director

Expected Salary in Aotearoa: $100,000- $140,000 p.a

Not-for-profits and charities are no different from corporate organisations in seeing their operations increasingly happen online. From donations and payments to client service portals and websites, User Experience (UX) Design is key to keeping stakeholders happy and engaged. A UX Designer ensures that customer experience is positive, that barriers to access are removed and that information is presented in a way that’s digestible and grabs attention. Because UX Design is so important to the functioning of an organisation, a senior UX Design role, such as UX Director, will often sit within senior management at large organisations. 

Essential Skills: Visual design and ability to use design software, experience with prototyping, wireframing, user flows, mockups and testing. Creativity and experience with agile business processes are a major plus.

This job is for you if you’re: A natural solver with a systems brain, who loves aesthetics and making things look pretty, plus project management skills

#4. Future Planner 

Expected Salary in Aotearoa: varies by organisation, but expect $80,000p.a  +

Future Planner is a broad job title that captures a new type of role in many organisations. Future Planners help prepare and resource organisations for the future of work and contemporary challenges and threats such as pandemics, climate change, new technologies and geopolitical events. Future Planners can advise and write policy in many areas, from infrastructure to diplomacy to Human Resources. Future planners will develop and share knowledge through networks, conferences and research, keeping pace with our changing world and adding their voice to new ideas. 

Essential Skills: Research, critical thinking, technical writing, consulting, project management

This job is for you if you’re: Academically minded or business savvy, someone who reads widely and can process complex information and apply it to organisational processes, planning and service design

#5. Online Fundraising Advisor 

Expected Salary in Aotearoa : $60,000-$75,000p.a

With Covid-19 throwing cold water on large scale events like marathons and with New Zealand becoming an increasingly cashless society – fundraisers have had it tough over the past few years. New strategies, ways of thinking and ways of working are needed in the industry – which is why Online Fundraising Advisors have become a hot job in the industry. Finding new ways to foster major relationships online with fresh and creative approaches. 

Essential Skills: Relationship management, sales, agility, content writing and digital design

This job is for you if you’re: An engagement guru who loves change and agility and has a flair for online communication

#6. Climate Change Advisor 

Expected Salary in Aotearoa:  $70,000- $100,000 p.a

Climate Change Advisors work in all industries, from local and central government to big corporations, to environmental not-for-profits. Climate Change Advisors work with policy, community engagement, systems change, strategic communication and future planning. Report and proposal writing and working with data are likely to make up part of the role, as well as working with other teams on climate change issues.

Essential Skills: A firm grounding in environmental policy and environmental science, analytical and creative problem-solving, ability to communicate complex ideas to a wide audience

This job is for you if you’re: passionate about climate action now, love explaining how things work and nerd out over good data

#7. Digital Storyteller 

Expected Salary in Aotearoa: $60,000-$80,000 p.a

Contemporary communication with audiences is about more than social media posts alone. In the pandemic era, we live online and digital storytelling is an in-demand skill across industries. Digital storytellers work within an organisation to communicate messaging to diverse audiences or specific groups. Digital storytelling can be done through multiple mediums; including internal communications, videos and podcasting, social media stories and immersive media like AI and virtual reality. 

Essential Skills: Communication, creativity, copywriting, videography and editing skills, design 

This job is for you if you’re: Someone who thrives on using your creativity daily and has a flair for communicating complex ideas simply and effectively. You love pop culture and keep up with current events and media, and have fun with creating content ‘for the moment’

#8. Community Activator/Community Connector

 Expected Salary in Aotearoa: $55,000-$75,000 p.a

Community Activators and Connectors work within a certain community providing advocacy, empowerment and advice to community members. They often identify with the community they’re within or have special expertise and knowledge specific to the community. Community Activators and Connectors will plan events, build collaborative relationships, attend working groups, comment on policy related to their community and sometimes raise funds or run awareness campaigns. 

Essential Skills: Advocacy, communication, relationships management, event planning/public programming 

This job is for you if you’re: someone who lives and breathes community, loves connecting people, creating experiences and fostering positive relationships

#9. Environmental Fieldworker 

Expected Salary in Aotearoa: $48,000-$55,000 p.a

Environmental Fieldworkers may work for DOC, other central government departments, councils or environmental charities. This is the ultimate hands-on job, with days spent out in the field in all weathers. Environmental Fieldworkers may be based in the bush, national parks, bodies of water and semi-urban environments. Day-to-day duties can range from planting to monitoring wildlife activity and repairing walkways and fences. Environmental fieldworkers learn from the natural world and contribute to our lived environment and the future of our taiao.

Essential Skills: Resilience and fitness, critical thinking, knowledge of Te Ao Māori

This job is for you if you’re: Passionate about Aotearoa’s green spaces and want to see an instant impact from your work, you love being outdoors and feeling at one with nature

#10. Local Hero 

Expected Salary in Aotearoa: voluntary to $55,000 p.a

Local Heroes come in all shapes and sizes and we all know one. They might keep a beloved community space going, plant trees, run an outreach programme for community members, keep a foodbank stocked, organise beach clean-ups or fundraise to fix local issues. Sometimes Local Heroes work or volunteer for a not-for-profit organisation, sometimes they start grassroots initiatives themselves. These roles are often part-time and run on a razor-thin budget. Local Hero is one of the most impactful and important job titles in the for-purpose world.

Essential Skills: Finance and budgeting, community organising, local knowledge, communication, advocacy

This job is for you if you’re:  Willing to get stuck in and do the mahi, can get a lot done with a little, are great at rallying people around a cause


If you haven’t already, sign up to Do Good Jobs’ weekly job alerts to find your dream job.

You can also watch our chat on ‘The Great Opportunity’ with Emmy Petersson here, it’s a great time to shoot for your dream role!

All expected salaries are based on For-Purpose sector roles, so may not be consistent with roles in the corporate world



About Rhiannon Robinson

Rhiannon Robinson is a labour market and organisational culture nerd and has done research on the use of personality traits in job ads. Read her 2022 labour market predictions here.

Our team offers job ad reviews and other services, like candidate shortlisting. Feel free to get in touch with [email protected] for more info.

Tags: , , ,

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.