Recently a small group of congregational representatives were discussing the challenges of recruiting volunteers for major initiatives within the congregation. These were demanding volunteer positions with considerable responsibilities that would impact the direction of the congregation in years to come. How can leaders best recruit folks so that the best leadership can be enlisted for the team?
The conversation started by asking individuals in the group to recall a best experience being recruited, whether it was for a paid position or a volunteer role. What made that experience meaningful? From those stories, the group extracted some principles for effective recruitment. Here are hints for recruiters that emerged from the conversation.
- Know the details (job description) of the position.
- Feel passionate about the work.
- Know the person you are recruiting – his/her gifts, skills, experience and passions.
- Connect the work to the gifts and passions of the potential volunteer.
- Explain how the participation of the potential volunteer would be value added to the purpose/mission of the work.
- Share what difference/impact the work would make for the congregation and its mission.
- Invite the potential volunteer to participate in a team, instead of asking him/her to an do an individual job.
What might your own positive experiences being recruited suggest about how you recruit others?
If you are interested in more information about recruiting volunteers, check out these resources: