When an organization relies on help from volunteers to advance its mission, it’s important that it make a concerted effort towards making volunteer’s experience as positive and productive as possible. Here are some key facets of building a strong volunteer force.
Let Volunteers Participate Meaningfully
An important step in improving volunteer engagement is giving volunteers the opportunity to do work that will both challenge and interest them. Don’t charge your volunteers with only the most menial tasks and responsibilities involved in your day to day to operations. Find out about what most appeals to them individually about your organization and enable them to get involved in a way that they’ll find fulfilling and meaningful.
Volunteers can provide valuable input about what makes an experience working with your organization good or bad. Invite feedback, conduct surveys, and encourage open dialogs about aspects of volunteering that can be improved.
Staying in communication with volunteers whether or not they’re currently volunteering reinforces that their time and contributions are valued. It’s important to be responsive when volunteers reach out for anything or request a reference.
Creating positive experiences for your volunteer force benefits both volunteers and your organization. It fosters a team-driven environment in which volunteers can know that they’ve really made a difference, and they’ll be inspired to spread the word about your organization’s mission.