The summer break from regular church programs is the perfect time to reflect on what you can do now to get ready for a strong start in the fall.
Ask yourself these four questions:
1. Did I recognize last season’s volunteers as they finished their commitments? If not—it’s not too late. There are many ways to do this:
* Parties, picnics, or receptions honoring volunteer accomplishments
* Awards, certificates, or other small recognition gifts
* Personal cards and notes (warm and sincere messages from the leader and pastor)
* Recognition of volunteers as part of a worship service
2. Have I asked each volunteer for feedback and evaluation? Leaders should ask volunteers for suggestions and feedback on the program they just completed. Allow them to reflect on their role and effectiveness. This may be the ideal time to redirect someone to a different ministry if they’re needing a change or looking for a better match.
3. Have I designed written position descriptions for the volunteer roles in my ministry area? If not, you might call a meeting of the volunteers in each program and have them celebrate their successes, brainstorm how to make the program even better, and write a description of what their role involved. These descriptions are critical for effective recruitment and placement in the fall. Of course, this is also an opportunity to invite those experienced workers to serve again on the team. Look for new potential leaders in the group.
4. Do I have a year-round recruitment plan? That plan might include follow-up with your summer short-term volunteers (teens, families, and substitutes) to invite them to serve in another project or program in the fall. Inform them of the ministry opportunities and conduct interviews to discover their interests and passions.
Put these four actions in place this summer and reap a harvest of workers this fall!