The Cream of the Crop: Recruiting the Right Mentors


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Finding warm bodies to meet your recruitment goals may be a relatively easy task. But finding the right mentors can be very difficult. Developing an effective recruitment strategy takes creativity, flexibility, innovation, and a good amount of brunt work. This month's webinar will focus on several key practices recommended in the field, including marketing tools, messaging, analyzing data, the importance of partnerships, and the establishment of a sound recruitment plan. Friends for Youth's Mentoring Institute Program Director Sarah Kremer and Recruitment Specialist Jonathan Cowgill will also share some best practices and our own program's recruitment experiences.

Join us as we navigate what works and what doesn't work as you start your fall mentor recruitment campaigns!

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The Cream of the Crop: Recruiting the Right Mentors

  1. 1. Transforming lives through the power of mentoring
  2. 2. Webinar Logistics: Adding Comments•  All attendees muted for best sound•  Type questions and comments in the question box; responses will either be direct to you or shared with all attendees•  “Raise your hand” to be unmuted at end to ask question live during webinar •  Works best for telephone or headset-to-computer connections •  Please monitor background noise
  3. 3. PanelistsSarah Kremer, ATR-BC Jonathan Cowgill Program Director Recruitment Specialist Friends for Youth’s Friends for Youth Mentoring Institute
  4. 4. Link to slides and recording of webinar will be posted to h5p://  Resource links and brief survey included in follow‐up email 
  5. 5. AGENDA•  Recruitment Basics: Creating Structure•  Recruitment Messaging: Finding the Right Mentors
  6. 6. •  Not enough resources (staff time and money) to support adequate recruitment strategies•  Attracting appropriate volunteers•  Finding diverse and/or specific group of mentors•  Increased competition for volunteers•  Volunteers may perceive clients as “too tough,” “too difficult,” or “too scary”
  7. 7. •  Recruitment policy includes –  How recruitment will be managed –  Roles and responsibilities of staff and board –  Timeline describing year-round efforts –  Written statement outlining eligibility requirements –  Recognition and retention activities, as well –  Sponsorship promotion
  8. 8. •  Recruitment policy includes –  Measurable and reasonable goals –  Appropriate staff to resources ratio –  Current and potential partners and process in developing relationships –  Targeted outreach based on participants’ needs –  Opportunities/materials for current volunteers to easily recruit –  Volunteer opportunities even beyond mentoring
  9. 9. Barbara Webster, Going to Market
  10. 10. #3 Effective recruitment requires its own system. Key Points: ! There is no hidden gold pot – recruitment requires work, an organized plan and a system to support it. ! The plan involves: o Step 1: Background Work • Understanding who you are – Market advantage • Understanding what you want – Goal setting • Understanding who you want - Market research o Step 2: The Tools • The pitch • The venues • The materials o Step 3: Implementation ! Without a well thought out and documented system you cannot grow relationships - relationships end as soon as staff leaves or staff forgets contacts. ! Make the system your legacy. Example: Recruitment Manual I. Recruitment Goals and Monthly Calendar of Activities II. Information about Agency III. Information about ClientsRecruitment: A IV. Program Messaging/PitchStrengths-Based V. Venues/StrategiesApproach, Center for VI. Sample MaterialsApplied Research VII. Evaluation ResultsSolutions, Application: • What is one simple activity or task you can begin to do when you get back to work
  11. 11. •  Program description •  Eligibility•  Role of volunteer requirements•  Responsibilities of •  Specific preferences volunteer •  Benefits & rewards•  How volunteers & •  Outcomes clients spend time •  Support from together staff
  12. 12. •  Qualities •  Special Skills•  Gender •  Motivations•  Age •  Concerns•  Location •  Outcomes •  Attitude toward•  Interests clients
  13. 13. Marketing Tools include•  Slogans and phrases•  Blurbs for online postings•  Speeches•  Print (brochures, flyers, posters, newspaper ads)•  Media (video, PSAs, interviews)•  Media campaigns (radio and TV interviews)•  Website
  14. 14. Marketing Tools include•  Large-scale media (billboards, bus posters)•  Social media (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, blogs)•  Promotional items (stickers, magnets, pens, t-shirts)•  OpEd letters•  Press releases•  Presentations•  Radio and TV spots
  15. 15. Strategies•  Easy sign-up/inquiry process•  Regular and consistent visibility•  Prompt follow-up•  Personal attention•  Committed volunteer recruiters•  Community involvement
  16. 16. Strategies•  Information meetings at sites convenient to potential volunteers•  Frequent assessment•  Ability to measure efforts for future planning•  Consistent tracking and timelines to assess/ try new strategies•  Repeat appeal as often as possible to as many people as possible
  17. 17. •  8% inquire match•  25% info session match•  50% interview match•  85% training match
  18. 18. Friends for Youth Mentoring Services FY2010‐2011 
  19. 19. Friends for Youth Mentoring Services FY2010‐2011 
  20. 20. Friends for Youth Mentoring Services FY2010‐2011 
  21. 21. INQUIRY  ORIENTATION  MATCHED Internet: postings/blogs 38% 46% 36%Internet: ads 4% 8% 10%Internet: other 2% 3% 6%Internet: website 1% 1% 2%Unknown 15% 9%Other 12%Friends for Youth events 14%Corporate events/postings 10% 6% 6%Word of Mouth 9% 19% 22%Newsletters/mailings 3% 4%TV/radio/print 3% 2% 2%Community events 2% 2% 2%Colleges & Universities 1% Friends for Youth Mentoring Services FY2010‐2011 
  22. 22. Potential Partners•  Current and past mentors•  Churches, synagogues, other faith-based centers•  Corporations•  Small businesses•  Service Clubs•  Community leaders
  23. 23. Potential Partners•  Chambers of Commerce•  Reporters•  Parents/guardians•  Referral agents/youth professionals•  Board of Directors/Advisory Board•  Universities or colleges•  Local personalities
  24. 24. •  People don’t join agencies - they join other people•  Volunteers, board members, staff, and donors all want to join winning team•  Sad stories don’t sell•  Share your enthusiasm and your passion•  Consistency pays off•  Increase your circle of influence•  Leave legacy by strengthening your infrastructure
  25. 25. Recruiting volunteers is similar to raising funds:•  Relationship, Relationship, Relationship•  Understand who you are talking to•  Sell your story in an eloquent and organized fashion•  Diversify efforts•  Speak to heart and mind of clients Susan Ellis, Volunteer Recruitment
  26. 26. •  Organized•  Thoughtful•  Succinct•  Warm and personable•  Catchy and attractive
  27. 27. •  Imagery reflects ideal volunteers (signed releases)•  Accurate to role and population served•  Outlines benefits and costs for volunteer mentors•  Attracts appropriate and careful volunteers•  Indicates commitment, frequency of meetings, and screening process•  Expresses realistic aims and expected outcomes•  Expresses strong Call to Action
  28. 28. •  Spencer (2007) found that many volunteers enter mentoring relationships with high expectations of “making a difference” in life of child, but these relationships prove to be more challenging than anticipated•  When imagined outcomes are not immediately realized or take a different form than what was originally expected, mentors may decide that relationship is not what they had bargained for and may end match prematurely
  29. 29. •  Women more likely to volunteer than men•  Older generation more likely to volunteer with school-based programs•  Biggest challenges: lack of time, lack of confidence•  Volunteers from higher incomes sustain longer relationships•  College students have less stable mentoring relationships•  Corporate volunteers prefer site-based opportunitiesCenter for Applied Research Solutions, 2006
  30. 30. Question: What do we do to recruit people of color/certain age/specific gender as volunteers?Answer: The same thing you do to recruit people from other communities!BUT tap into cultural and ethnic organizations that already exist in these communitiesSales, 2011
  31. 31. •  Culture: behaviors and practices, attitudes and core values and institutions of influence that create and define people or organization’s values.Ensure your organization is culturally competent –  Organizational awareness –  Value diversity –  Manage dynamics of differences –  Adapt to diversity –  Institutionalize cultural knowledge Sales, 2011
  32. 32. •  Evidence of voices from underserved and unserved (community not just providers) included in program planning/ selection•  Outreach strategies are creative and innovative•  Program design addresses demographic disparitiesSales, 2011
  33. 33. •  Program targets specific strategies for under/unserved populations•  Evidence of cultural specific and language strategies, across age groups•  Include clear analysis of population disparities•  Program/strategy is tied to new solutions and program designSales, 2011
  34. 34. •  Start within your organization and use current resources –  Current staff, mentors, Board members of same cultural group seeking•  Conduct asset mapping exercise to identify people and organizations (TCAM)•  Host focus groups•  Create visual profiles of wanted mentors from collage images (Sales, 2011)
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he Center for the ! ! ;133&6&(KQ"$#&-($%$&(AFM2*-)%&-"$%$&(0(1-1-$%$&(.)34+"$)((1:$)%$1"(.&%:B R&5&"/$"61"6-145($7&)"/%$+&)331%%&/.#(/)%!6-145!)*%.!%$6#)"/)(($6")%&)+%1&):9Advancement of Mentoring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
  36. 36. •  Ask directly•  Be clear and upfront about commitment, costs, expectations•  Empower ambassadors already familiar with agency•  Be prepared to ask different questions depending upon readiness of potential volunteer•  Be proactive – plan answers to obstacles and challenges –  Time commitment –  Unsure of activities –  Potential mismatch
  37. 37. Center for Applied Research Solutions•  Recruitment: A Strengths-Based ApproachThe Center for the Advancement of Mentoring•  Asset Mapping Action PlanNational Mentoring Center•  Volunteer Motivation and Mentor Recruitment•  Effective Mentor Recruitment: Getting Organized, Getting Results•  Marketing for the Recruitment of Mentors•  Putting the "Men" Back in MentoringMENTOR•  The Wisdom of Age: A Handbook for Staff (2009)•  RIA, Issue 8: Mentoring Across Generations: Engaging 50+ Adults as Mentors•  RIA, Issue 2: Effectiveness of Mentoring Program PracticesMentor Michigan•  Men in Mentoring Toolkit
  38. 38. Questions?
  39. 39. Thank you!Link to slides and recording of webinar will be posted to h5p://  Resource links and brief survey included in follow‐up email 
  40. 40. Next WebinarTuesday, September 20Out Here in the Field: Special Issues for Rural Mentoring Programswith Kathryn Eustis and Dena Valin, presenters at the 2011 Friends for Youth Mentoring Conference
  41. 41.  650‐559‐0200 105093182858863