Thursday, October 31, 2013

bring them in without burning them out

Volunteers are amazing. Period.

Especially for organizations like the church I lead, where volunteers really make it possible for us to be viable.

I've been thinking a lot recently about how to create space for volunteers, how to engage new volunteers, and how to facilitate expectations and fair loads. In other words, how to "bring them in without burning them out."

My goal is to help those who volunteer to identify their passions and their gifts and then connect them to opportunities where those passions meet the needs in the community. What I'm learning is that there are some pretty talented people out there with LOTS of passions and great ideas. My connection time is short and the limitation is usually time. How do we as an organization make the connections smoothly and (here goes my boundaries awareness again) how do we practice saying "no" so that the load doesn't become too much for any one person?

If only people weren't so awesome with so many talents, right?  :)

The organization has needs, too. Consistency and Commitment. There are things that have to get done "the nitty gritty" to keep the mission alive. Sustainability of the organization is an ongoing pressure I feel as we want to honor the movements of passions, dreams and new ideas.

As I'm thinking about this I'm curious what resources are already out there?

What creative approaches are you using either in your own discernment of how you volunteer your time or as a leader of an organization that depends on volunteers?

Looking forward to learning from you - the community that reads this - to learn how to better enable and support our volunteers. Thanks (in advance) for your help!

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