4 Vital Principles for Developing Your Volunteer Team
There are tons are articles on how find and recruit new volunteers.
And that’s important; it takes a lot of people to lead a successful Kid’s Ministry.
But there seems to be a lot less written on how develop the volunteer team you already have, which is equally important.
If you intentionally invest into your volunteer team’s growth, retention will rise, the quality of your volunteers will increase, and overall morale will stay higher.
So here’s some really practical “how to’s” that the staff at the church where I serve came up with in one of our staff meetings.
These 4 principles are not comprehensive, but they are vital if you want a healthy, growing team.
Principle 1: Create times where the whole volunteer team comes together to have fun, learn, and give input.
You probably have at least 2 times each year where you bring all your volunteers together for some kind of training.
Training is important, but never let it be only information or teaching.
Make sure you also spend some time having fun: laughing together, celebrating, thanking, and honoring.
And make sure that you also give your volunteers an opportunity to speak into the ministry.
Ask them how you can improve what you’re already doing, what isn’t working, how they are feeling in their role, etc.
When you honor your volunteers, they will honor you.
Principle 2: Connect with volunteer team members personally by laughing, praying, asking questions, and following-up.
Never underestimate the power of laughter.
Just like it’s an important tool to use with kids, it’s also vital to joke and laugh with your volunteers.
Make sure that you have a way to collect prayer requests from your volunteers, which are often where they’ll feel comfortable being most vulnerable with you.
When interacting with volunteers, make sure you give them your full attention and ask them about specific things in their lives (Our acronym is IFFY – Ask about Interests, Family, Friends, and how You (as in them) are doing.
When they know you care, they’ll want to follow you that much more.
And in all of this, follow-up: let them know you’re praying for them and mention their specific requests, let them know you remember the last conversation you had by mentioning something from it.
Principle 3: Give away responsibility to volunteer team members by discovering their gifts and giving them opportunities to use them. Then celebrate with them when they do.
Make sure you really observe your team members in action.
Sometimes we place people where we have needs instead of really figuring out if that position is a good fit for a volunteer.
If someone is out of place, make it your mission to find the right fit for them.
When volunteers are in their groove and you know it, let them have room to operate.
And when they excel, celebrate with them personally with a note and as a team when you all come together.
Principle 4: Keep the vision in front of your volunteer team and give them a scorecard, so they can know how to accomplish it.
The last principle is all about keeping the end goal in front of your team.
Never let your team get so caught up in the week to week that they forget what the ultimate goal is.
Always keep the vision in front of your team; you can never communicate it too often.
And make sure team members know how they can contribute to it.
Give them a scorecard.
For kids, maybe the scorecard is being consistent, staying patient in Small Groups, and asking every kid how they’re doing.
Those are 3 practical things they have control over and can easily measure to know that they are contributing to the vision.
So those are 4 vital principles to growing your team our staff shared.
When our church staff got together and talked about this, I personally learned so much, so I wanted to pass their wisdom along.
If this was helpful to you, please pass it along as well by giving a share on Facebook!
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