Do Your Volunteers Know How to Get Involved?

Do Your Volunteers Know How to Get Involved?
November 2, 2016 Bob D'Ambrosio
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What would happen if one Sunday 10 people from your church decided to volunteer? What would they do? Where would they go? How about if 50 people wanted to get involved? Hey, it could happen!

For Foundations Church in Loveland, Colorado, the solution was to create a space for people to connect. Each weekend, they set up a tent outside their main entrance. It’s clearly marked “Connection Place.”

Dan Schmidt, pastor of discipleship, explains, “We needed a place where people could go if they wanted to get involved.” That involvement could be signing up to serve—or to be served. “It’s the place to go when you want to take the next step to connect deeper in community. That could involve joining a small group, attending an event, or requesting prayer.”

People who want to volunteer often run into roadblocks that keep them from getting involved. If you don’t have a process that facilitates quick action, you may lose a willing volunteer. Here are a few things to keep in mind so people don’t fall through the cracks.

  1. Action Step—All recruitment messages need a call to action. What is the next step a volunteer needs to do to get involved after expressing interest? Attend training? Have an interview? Go to an information meeting? Be prepared to guide someone to the next step.
  2. Test Drive—You wouldn’t buy a car without first taking it out for a spin. For some people, ministry involvement may be new and they’d like to try it out first before making a commitment. Give people the option to observe or try it once before deciding if it’s a good fit.
  3. Completion Date—Determine the length of service for each ministry position. Is it a one-time deal, a six-month commitment, or a longer appointment? An open-ended term of service scares off today’s volunteers. Do you really want to be an usher—for life? Let people know the expectation up front, and offer some flexibility if they need to make adjustments.

With these items in place, you’re ready to plug people into ministry and connect with your church. Who knows? You may get 50 people this weekend who move from sitting to serving!

 

Bob D’Ambrosio is a 25-year veteran of frontline church ministry and now serves with Group’s content solutions team. He’s a trainer for volunteer equipping, a Refresh the Church blogger, and a ministry coach for Group U. Bob is a contributing author and general editor of the E4:12 Bible Study Series Better Together: Connecting to God and Others and Leading Out: Connecting People to Purpose.

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