Guest Author: Peggy Hoffman, Mariner Management & Marketing and NetFORUM by Community Brands
Lackluster volunteerism. The unanimous, and not surprising answer to the top challenge chapter leaders experience. It’s either not enough volunteers, less committed volunteers, or volunteer burn-out. How can we at the national level help solve this problem so common at the local level? Help local groups think differently. Coach your chapters on how to attract today’s volunteer. If we really want to help solve this, take two more steps: (1) actively help them recruit volunteers and (2) invest in volunteer training.
(1) Encourage chapters to embrace today’s volunteer.
Help your chapters in 4 ways:
- Use teams vs. committees. It’s partially semantics (committee feels like a long-term, time-consuming commitment while team says fun). It’s also scaling the role to what it really takes to get the job done.
- Embrace micro- volunteering. Identify ways people can contribute in a more ad hoc manner. And very importantly recognize the volunteers who serve in this way.
- Acknowledge and reward chapters who recruit and recognize ad hoc and micro-volunteers. In your chapter reports, do you ask how many members are doing some type of ad hoc or micro-volunteering? Do you ask how many micro-volunteering opportunities chapters offer?
- Remove barriers that require fully traditional volunteer models such as a list of required committees or designated board roles. Let chapters have flexibility to create a variety of volunteering opportunities.