7 Tips For Recruiting – And Keeping – Volunteers At Your Church
If recruiting volunteers at your church is on your to-do list, you’ll want to read this post.
Often, the go-to response is to put out the call for more people to serve. This leaves you left hoping people volunteer themselves.
However, that announcement + hope combo rarely yields great results. And you find yourself having to ask for help again and again.
Let’s end that cycle. Below are 7 tips on recruiting- and keeping- volunteers at your church.
1) Fit Matters
When there’s a mismatch between the person and the role, it’s a lose-lose situation.
Avoid the all-around frustration and align people in the right places. Happier volunteers serve in roles that fit their giftings, spiritually or vocationally. Happier volunteers also serve longer!
2) Train People
People don’t like feeling confused or unprepared. Ensure you have an onboarding strategy so people receive appropriate, consistent training – regardless of the role.
It will take work at first, but it provides a clear path for both trainers and trainees each time you need to recruit new people.
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3) Communicate Expectations Upfront
Share with your recruit the responsibilities and who their point person will be.
Most importantly, be clear around the time commitment.
Knowing the time commitment eases the mind of those who fear serving in a role without an end in sight. And it allows flexibility for those with packed schedules or a desire to serve in other places.
Example: “A greeter signs up to serve for 1 year at a time. They serve for 30 minutes, 15 minutes before and after the start of worship. With the number of greeters we have, we ask that you serve once a month.”
4) Tap Into What Makes Them Happy
You and I know that serving is a joy.
What makes it joyful varies by role and person. For example, if you know that someone enjoys detailed work, mention that when you ask them to help keep track of guests and why that’s needed.
Yes, you may desperately need help. Put that aside when you ask, and focus on the joy and satisfaction that individual will get from meeting that need.
5) Personal Invites
Announcements quickly get information out. But it’s rarely effective.
When it comes to recruiting volunteers, having personal conversations works. Listen well, tailor the conversation to the person, and help them imagine themselves serving in a way that matters.
6) Bring A Friend
Boxing up canned goods for the local food bank will bring joy. It’s a lot more fun to have a friend serving with you!
Check out some of the benefits when you encourage current volunteers to recruit friends:
- Extends your recruitment beyond who you can talk with.
- They’ll know their friends’ strengths and where they may best plug in.
- More people = more hands = less asking for help.
Besides – volunteering is more fun when you’re doing it with someone you already know and like!
If people are giving their time and talents, you should thank them. Create a culture that communicates with and celebrates volunteers. Shared gratitude keeps volunteers from feeling under-appreciated, out of the loop, or ill-equipped.
When you implement these 7 tips, you can make positive changes throughout the life of your church and move forward together in love and on mission.
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