Three Keys for Finding Great Volunteers
by James Dickens on Orange Leader Blogs
We’re all in need of volunteers. If we’re going to build a great student ministry—the one that we believe God wants us to build—we’re not going to be able to do it alone. We’re going to have to find great people to help. In fact, I would argue that your student ministry will rise and fall based on the quality of your volunteer team. And that’s because a great ministry is more than just a great building, a great budget, or a great strategy. Great volunteers make great ministries.
The problem with volunteers is simply that they have to be found. Great people are out there, and they’re going to be incredible at serving in your ministry. They just don’t know it yet! Our job is to find and recruit them, and that’s not easy. So I’d like to pass on just three tips that I think will immediately help you up your game and increase your numbers when it comes to volunteers.
1. Identify your target. You need to clarify two things. First, who are you looking for? That’s a great question that we should have an answer for. What kind of person do you want in your ministry? What kind of qualities do you want them to have? What kind of availability? What age and stage of life? Be clear about who you’re looking for so that you’ll know when you find them. That’s the second thing you need to ask: Where are they? Where is that kind of person found? Are they in college? Are they in singles ministry? Are they in young couples small groups? Are they playing down at the local softball league? Identify who they are and start showing up and recruiting where they are.
2. Perfect your speech. You need to perfect, and I mean perfect, your quick vision cast. This is the 3 to 5 minute speech you give someone you just met for coffee, ran into at Target, or happen to be playing with in your Fantasy Football League. Next to perhaps the Gospel and your wedding vows, this needs to be the most effective speech you’ll ever give in your life.Cast vision for why what you’re doing is urgent and how God could use them to change someone’s life forever. After all, you’re inviting them to be influencers in what is the most influential stage of someone’s life. Your town is full of students who aren’t in a relationship with Jesus, and they have a chance to do something about it. They have a chance to hold out Jesus to the next generation! God is looking for some men and women who are willing to simply say yes with an hour or two of their time every week. That’s it! So perfect your speech and be prepared to make your ask.
3. Recruit recruiters. That’s not a misprint. The best people at recruiting volunteers are actually other great volunteers. You’re not the only one who can recruit. You need to recruit some recruiters. Go to your best volunteers and ask them to identify and introduce you to anyone they know who would be great at doing what they’re doing. The cool thing is you don’t even have to train them. They’re already volunteering so they know what it takes to be great at it. They know who you’re looking for, and that probably means they know a lot of people who fit that description. Recruit recruiters and send them out to find more people just like them.
Start doing just these three things this year, and I’m telling you, you will see your numbers and quality of volunteers start going up. Good luck!