Set out to discover why Who are volunteers and what services do they provide? What are the most effective ways to manage volunteers? Why and where are these strategies successful? How can we get these findings and effective strategies into the hands of as many people as possible?
Carried out in three phases: Phase 1: Send out, collect and analyze survey data from volunteer base of 16 organizations Phase 2: Identified 25 volunteer management practices being done successfully by rural groups; transplanted and documented trial practices for one year. Phase 3: Outreach and dissemination of information through workshops, workbook, webinars, etc.
AccomplishmentsThe Toolkit for Working with Rural Volunteers- First of its kind500 pg research -> 25 best practices in workbook practices, worksheets, dataCan download it on ruralvolunteer.orgMoving on with Session
Stable, mature volunteers
Specific skillset Some want menial, others want to use their skills Have open conversation about expectations goal-oriented motivated by feeling value service is “civic duty”
Recognize their expertise, leadership, hard work and commitment The more hours they volunteer, more likely to return reimagine their roles.
Offer family or corporate opportunities and flexible scheduling
Promote value of changing 1 person’s life make it local talk about results encourage flexibility and creativity identify what they will learn provide meaningful assignments
listen to preferences and concerns respect their skills and opinions build in socializing and fun run efficient meetings recognize individual contributions
No one can figure us out. Promote the cause/mission or issue Issues that represent community interests
promote collaboration, team spirit and diversity Multiple options, parallel opportunities Variety of exciting and challenging experience Opportunities for innovation Engage quickly, keep busy, Give ongoing feedback Define tasks and expectations Use technology respected individual encourage questions and challenging assumptions
“Millennials generally are sector agnostic or neutral, which means they have no particular allegiance to nonprofits over government or the business sector. It is the cause that matters.”
Environment Google office in London. Create an environment that supports your goals. Make sure they are aware that they should not feel pressured to take on more than they need to and be sure to let them know to tell you if something changes.
Accountability Accountability to another person.Have them find an accountability buddy (DON’T CALL THEM THAT TO THE VOLS)
CalendarWrite it on your calendar.Give them time to put the time and dates in their phones (Suggest they set reminders!)
PlanCommit to a concrete plan. Make sure details are solidified with volunteers.
Discipline momentum Follow Through challenge will only last a few seconds. Discipline morphs into momentumAt first your volunteers will need discipline to come, but then the momentum and feel good energy should keep them going… with some additional retention