Gcsv2011 dealing with difficult volunteers-j. runge darlage and b. fox


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This document was created by an individual or individuals who submitted a proposal so he / she / they may present at the Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiative’s 2011 Conference on Service and Volunteerism (GCSV11). This proposal was approved by the Indiana Commission on Community Service and Volunteerism (ICCSV) and other community partners. Sharing this document is a courtesy extended by the OFBCI to conference attendees who may want to reference materials covered at the GCSV11, and the OFBCI in no way not responsible for specific content within.

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Gcsv2011 dealing with difficult volunteers-j. runge darlage and b. fox

  1. 1. Dealing With Difficult Volunteers Jane Runge Darlage and Becky Fox, CVA
  2. 2. Welcome Introductions  Your name  Where you’re from and what you do  What you hope to get out of this session
  3. 3. Agenda Stopping problems before they start Dealing with problems as they arise Firing a volunteer
  4. 4. Let’s Start at the Very Beginning… Policies and Procedures Position Descriptions Interviewing Orientation Conduct Agreement Placement Training Monitoring Evaluating
  5. 5. Policies and Procedures Follow employment practices Pre-determine course of action and no-tolerance policies Do security checks Determine documentation procedures Jane’s story-Mr. C
  6. 6. Position Descriptions Clear, concise, and thorough Model after paid staff position descriptions Create with paid staff who will be supervising Give a copy to volunteer Keep signed copy in volunteer file Refer back for evaluations, or if problems arise
  7. 7. Position Descriptions Include:  Position title  Description of position  Length of required commitment  Shift times  Supervisor’s name and title  Skills required  Screening requirements  Training and supervision plan  Benefits offered
  8. 8. Interviewing Volunteers Conduct interviews of all volunteers Include others in process, such as potential supervisors Take notes Look for clues to future problems Note special skills, hobbies, etc.
  9. 9. Orientation Can be formal or informal Be consistent Provide handbook (can mirror paid staff handbook) Include:  Organization mission and history  Policies and procedures  Performance and behavior expectations  Position descriptions  Any specialized, general information
  10. 10. Conduct Agreement/Understanding List specific expectations Provide in writing, and have volunteer sign Clears up “they should have known that” arguments Jane’s story-Mr. B
  11. 11. Placement Discuss position description in depth Position requirements should match volunteer interests and skills Have supervisory staff in place & ready Give volunteer a choice to accept or decline position
  12. 12. Training Specialized training, beyond orientation All positions should have some kind of training Can be formal or informal Determine whether supervisor will conduct training, or volunteer coordinator Keep it consistent for each new volunteer
  13. 13. Monitoring Performance Follow up with volunteer Ask supervisor for their observations Check on volunteer periodically
  14. 14. Evaluation Do regular, periodic evaluations Be honest! Suggest further training or a new position when appropriate Take corrective action when necessary
  15. 15. When All Else Fails… Taking corrective action Eight myths about dealing with difficult volunteers Alternatives to firing Firing a volunteer
  16. 16. Taking Corrective Action Document, document, document!  Keep accurate records  Record dates, details of situation, who was involved, what action was taken, etc.  Keep copies of complaints, accident reports, emails or phone messages, any and all supportive documents Jane’s story-Mrs. A
  17. 17. Taking Corrective Action Find your support network  Talk to your supervisor about appropriate actions  Ask your mentor for advice  Talk to someone else who manages volunteers  Work with the volunteer’s direct supervisor Determine who will support you before you’re in a bad situation
  18. 18. Taking Corrective Action List other training sessions List books, articles, and electronic sources List consulting services, other sources
  19. 19. Eight Myths About Difficult Volunteers Ignoring a problem will make it go away. No one else notices the problem. I can fix/change the problem person. I just need to give them time to show their good side. If I confront them, it will make things worse. If I confront them, they’ll leave and the program will die. I can handle them if I’m just more caring and accepting. If I push them out they will get angry.From “New Competencies for Volunteer Administrators” By Sue Vineyard
  20. 20. Alternatives to Firing Re-Enforce policies and procedures Re-Assign to another department Re-Train on necessary skills Re-Vitalize or Re-Charge Refer to another organization Retire with dignityFrom “How to Fire a Volunteer and Live to Tell About It” By: Steve McCurley
  21. 21. Firing a Volunteer Try everything else first! Should not be a surprise Follow policies and procedures already in place
  22. 22. Firing a Volunteer – Plan your Moment Meet volunteer privately, if possible Ask someone to witness the meeting Have security present, if necessary Jane’s story- Mrs. A
  23. 23. Firing a Volunteer – Practice What To Say Is less really more? Do you HAVE to say anything? Be quick, direct, and absolute Announce, don’t argue Don’t try to counsel Avoid personal issues Stay calm!From “How to Fire a Volunteer and Live to Tell About It” By: Steve McCurley
  24. 24. Firing a Volunteer – Tie up Loose Ends Volunteer  Send a letter with details of decision Paid Staff, Other Volunteers and Clients  Inform them of the change, if it affects them  No need to tell details about why Your records  Document everything!  Record all occurrences, attempted remedies, and final outcome  Make notes of meeting details and have witness sign  Keep a copy on volunteer file
  25. 25. Firing a Volunteer Advantages  Disadvantages  Remove barriers to  Risk losing volunteer accomplishing mission respect or support  Give meaning and value  Risk bad PR to volunteer service  Gain credibility for your program  Gain volunteer respect  Increase satisfaction of  Jane’s Story- Mrs. A successful volunteers  Increase the quality of your program
  26. 26. Questions Questions or Comments? Thank you for coming today!
  27. 27. Contact Information Jane Runge Darlage  jdarlage@indianamuseum.org  317-650-9589 Becky Fox, CVA  becky.fox@uwci.org  317-921-1303 CIAVA  Meetings every 2nd Thursday at the Red Cross, 8-10am.  ciava.org  membership@ciava.org to join  hospitality@ciava.org to rsvp for meeting
  28. 28. Resources New Competencies for Volunteer Administrators  Sue Vineyard  http://www.energizeinc.com/art/anewc.html Dealing With a Difficult Volunteer Leader  Stephen G. Donshik  http://ejewishphilanthropy.com/dealing-with-a-difficult-volunteer-leader/ A Few Pointers On the Unpleasant Topic of Firing Volunteers  Sarah Jane Rehnborg, Ph.D.  http://www.serviceleader.org/leaders/firing 5 Tips for Dealing with Difficult Volunteers  HandsOn Network  http://handsonblog.org/2011/05/26/5-tips-for-dealing-with-difficult-volunteers/ How to Fire a Volunteer & Live to Tell About It, From: Grapevine, Jan/Feb 93  Steve McCurley  http://www.casaforchildren.org/site/c.mtJSJ7MPIsE/b.5466409/k.E368/How_to _Fire_a_Volunteer_and_Live_to_Tell_About_It.htm