If you ask any leader of a non-profit or church what one of the hardest things to do is, you’ll most likely hear they have trouble keeping quality volunteers to help out.
They ask and ask but receive no response. If they do receive responses, those responses are subpar.
The end result is finding quality volunteers is hard.
But there’s actions you can take as a leader to find quality volunteers that will stick with your organization for years to come.
Have clearly defined guidelines: Skimping on guidelines for volunteers is an easy thing to do, especially when you’re struggling to bring in people to help.
This is a huge mistake. The guidelines you’ve laid out for volunteers is there for a reason. They help weed out those who will not be a good fit and clearly defines what is expected out of each volunteer.
Create a list of what you want your volunteers to do. Define how you want your volunteers to act. Give them a clear vision of how you see quality volunteers.
Honor your volunteers: In a previous post, I shared that your volunteers are giving freely of their time and energy to help your organization fulfill it’s vision.
This means they’re putting in work after their regular job. They’re practicing and learning to encourage those they’re going to interact with. They may even be pitching in money themselves to help further the organization.
While they may not be consciously seeking honor and recognition, it doesn’t hurt to give them praise for a job well done.
Watch your volunteers and find those who are doing exceptional jobs. Tell them they’re doing great and how they’re helping you out.
Your words, and maybe a gift card or two, will go a long way in attracting quality people to your organization.
Open your ears: People are always talking. Whether it’s about the latest movie or how poorly things are being run, they’re talking and you can use this to your advantage.
When people are talking, listen to them. Keep your ears open and listen to what they’re really saying.
Latch onto their words and begin making changes on what they’re seeing. They’re in the trenches, after all. They’re able to see and notice things you won’t be able to.
Listen to your people!
Offer opportunities to grow: A previous action was to honor your volunteers since they’re doing this for free. Another avenue to take is to offer your volunteers an opportunity to grow.
An opportunity to grow could mean many things. You might:
Lend them an audio course you think would benefit them
Take them to a leadership conference like the Catalyst Conference
Sit down and share your wisdom over a cup of coffee
Introduce them to other influential people you may know
Quality volunteers don’t want to sit around and do the same thing over and over again. Quality volunteers want to grow.
Offering them different avenues for growth will bring in those seeking challenges. Get offering!
You can find quality volunteers. You just have to put in the effort to do so.
Remember, you’re creating the environment of your organization. This attracts or repels people you’re looking for.
Use the actions above to help create an organization that will draw in the volunteers you want.