So you’ve got a new list of recruitments or maybe just one new volunteer, but what do you do with this list? Do you have a process in place to help them get trained and ready for your worship service? If not, here are some helpful ways to make sure a volunteer feels included and ready for whatever comes their way.
When someone says “Yes” to your ask for volunteers, respect that “Yes”. Contact them back via text, call, email, Facebook or an Instagram message within a week. If you can’t get to them within a week, do it as soon as possible.
You’ll want to follow-up as quickly as possible to avoid interest waning in becoming a volunteer and as I referred to above, respect their time. But what should you talk about in your follow-up message? Well, the best thing is to set up a time for a face-to-face meeting and go over some details about the volunteer role.
2) Face-to-Face Meeting
In this age of digital communication and digital connection, there is nothing that can solidify a relationship, be it between friends or an employer-employee relationship, better than a face-to-face meeting. This can be a one-on-one meeting over coffee or a new volunteer group meeting over pizza. Either way works, but scheduling that face-to-face meeting in your follow-up message is important!
While meeting face-to-face, you’ll want to start off by engaging your new volunteer(s) on a personal level. Again, we’re focusing on building community and you can’t do community without knowing what’s going on in each other’s lives. It’s like trying to have cake without flour or sugar. Doesn’t work.
Next, you’ll want to ask them what their understanding of the volunteer role is. A lot of frustration and burn out can be prevented before it starts if you find out volunteer’s expectations of the role. You can then explain what the volunteer role is and open up the floor for questions or concerns.
The key to this meeting isn’t about being in charge, or about telling people what to do. It’s about explaining the role and seeing if the potential volunteer is still interested and wants to continue on to…
Don’t leave your volunteers alone and without training. Every position, no matter how small, needs some form of training. Training is more than just giving them a to-do list or a list of do’s and don’ts. It’s a way to build the community of your team and, importantly, make sure they feel confident enough to do the job.
Some training can be done on Sunday morning and some can be done during the week. However you do your training, just do it. Implement a process of how many training sessions are needed before a volunteer is comfortable enough to be on their own. Figure out what exactly needs to be covered in those training sessions. Empower other volunteers to train new volunteers.
If the potential volunteer has gone through training and is now an official volunteer, check in with them on a weekly to monthly basis. See how they’re doing, personally and in the position. They want to know that what they’re doing is valuable. They want to know they’re doing great.
Feel free to send an encouraging email once a month or share a testimony about how their role impacted someone’s life. This is more than just doing something right. This is about serving the greater church. You know it. I know it. Make sure they know it as well. After all, no one is going to turn away encouragement in the middle of their day.