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The Reason I Volunteer – Ashley

Ashley is next in the spotlight in our #TheReasonIVolunteer campaign.

This girl is a powerhouse in the most understated way possible. Not only does she work a full-time job at a church, but Ashley is currently finishing up her MBA as well. As an undergrad, Ashley majored in English and minored in Music. She volunteers at her church in the orchestra, playing the violin.

Here is Ashley’s WHY:

“I serve through the music ministry because God gave me a gift. Serving and sharing it with others is a way I say thank you to Him for giving it to me. The problem I sometimes have is forgetting who gets the glory. Usually, when I forget and get wrapped up in MY talent, He “allows” something to happen, like, my mic not to work for a spoken word-violin duo performance, or me completely forgetting what notes I’m supposed to be playing during a worship service. He alone should get the glory, and when He does, no one using any gift He has given them will ever be put to shame. I always want to be used in whatever capacity. Right now, it’s through music.”

The more stories like Ashley’s that we hear, the more we get inspired to make the most of our skills and gifts! Her interest and knowledge of music led her to give back, and she consistently keeps her focus on what’s important. Ashley gave a great reminder that volunteering is NOT ABOUT US. It’s all about serving God and others. A simple concept, but so easy to forget.

Thanks, Ashley for the fun opportunity to hang out with you and hear your story!

If you’re enjoying the #TheReasonIVolunteer series, be sure to comment below and let us know. Follow along with our campaign with #IAmVolunteerU #Volunteeru on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

 

 

Christina Angelakos has a doctorate in Strategic Leadership from Regent University. She loves working with teams in both the corporate and nonprofit marketplace. Follow her on Twitter @ChristinaAngel

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Recruiting LIKE A BOSS

One of the most frequent questions we get asked at Volunteer U is, “How do I get more volunteers?”

This is a common issue; especially for churches and nonprofits where non-paid individuals make up a majority of the positions. Sadly, although leaders know the importance of recruitment, it is usually one of the very last tasks on their busy to-do list. What leaders don’t always realize, is that a little bit of strategizing and effort now can save a lot of stress later on. Having a solid recruitment plan in place will keep a steady flow of volunteers coming through the pipeline.

Below are the three steps of recruitment and the three keys to an effective recruitment strategy.

STEP ONE. Explain the Need

This is where your salesmanship should come out. Spare no details. A flair for the dramatic is helpful here too. Even a monotonous, dirty task like cleaning the parking lot can sound exciting if you put the right spin on it! Serve your community, build friendships, and help keep our parking lot clean! Sounds like a pretty nice way to spend a few hours Saturday morning.

STEP TWO. Prove why THEY are needed

People want to know that they are needed. When you recruit, you need to make a case for why they are important. When we ask people to serve, everyone automatically believes someone better qualified will step in. We need to show volunteers that everyone is needed and can contribute. It’s also important to make people invest emotionally. Explain what you need and how their unique gifts and skills can make an impact.

STEP THREE. Call to Action

Our call to action should be simple and to the point. Ask for help with a specific project or encourage people to come to your volunteer orientation. Give them one simple step that they can take right away.

Most churches are so desperate to get help, that they try to make the volunteer process as easy as possible. I think that’s a mistake. We want to put a few steps in place that will act as filters. We’re not just looking for anyone. We’re looking for the right people. Trust me, it’s much better to be searching for someone to fill a spot, than having to clean up a mistake.

We need to build in some safeties to help make sure we get the right people in the right roles. Background checks should be standard practices for anyone working with children or youth, but asking people to become church members, or attend a mandatory training/orientation will help weed out those who aren’t committed.

3 Keys of Volunteer Recruitment

#1 Put Your Current Volunteers To Work

Recruiting doesn’t have to be an overwhelming process. It should be built into the culture of your organization. Current volunteers should be your biggest advocates. There’s nothing that can compare to word-of-mouth advertising. 84% of consumers say they trust recommendations from family, friends, and colleagues [1].

#2 Hold Volunteer Fairs

Two of the biggest reasons people tell us they don’t volunteer are 1. They don’t think they’re needed. 2. They think someone else will do it. People won’t know what you need until you let them know. Let them know all the different ways they can serve.

#3 Have a Social Media Presence

Social media has a huge reach. Your organization should have a consistent presence online to generate interest and keep people engaged. 58% of consumers share positive experiences with a company on social media and also ask their network opinions about brands [2]. This is your chance to handcraft a perception of your organization.

References

[1].  Nielsen (2013, September 17). Under the Influence: Consumer Trust in Advertising. Retrieved July 24, 2017, from http://www.nielsen.com/us/en/insights/news/2013/under-the-influence-consumer-trust-in-advertising.html

[2] SDL Survey Reveals Consumers Want Brands to Offer Consistent Experience (2013, May 15). Retrieved July 24 2017. http://www.sdl.com/about/news-media/press/2013/sdl-survey-reveals-consumers-want-brands-to-offer-consistent-experience.html

 

 

Christina Angelakos has a doctorate in Strategic Leadership from Regent University. She loves working with teams in both the corporate and nonprofit marketplace. Follow her on Twitter @ChristinaAngel

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Helping Hurting People

People Are Hurting

Every week, people gather in our churches. They come to worship God, experience His presence, hear His Word preached, grow as disciples, and fellowship with like-minded believers.

Some are hurting; they come seeking a Rhema word or touch from God. They come with health issues, broken hearts, and lives, damaged relationships, emotional, financial concerns, work stresses, addictions, life pressures, past hurts, unforgiveness, anxiety, worry, hopelessness, and the list goes on and on.

We do not have to go far to find a mission field. Our congregations are packed with hurting people in desperate need of help! We can be there for them. Providing help, friendship, support, encouragement, prayer and God’s love.

#1 Be Proactive

Be on the lookout for people that are hurting. Some will be easy to spot, others it will be more difficult. Don’t take anything or anyone for granted. Things may seem okay on the outside, but inside they’re a mess. Ask the Holy Spirit to direct you. Reach out to people. Let them know that you care about them and are there to help.

Create ‘safety nets’ for those hurting. Places where they can come for prayer, encouragement and Godly counsel – altars, prayer meetings, pastoral and professional counseling, small groups.

Equip leaders to provide specialized care. (ex. Stephen Ministries, GriefShare, Recovery Groups, Counseling.)

#2 Be Prescriptive

One of the best ways to help hurting people is to get them into a small group.

Small groups are powerful! They provide safety, Godly relationships, and support. Coupled with good Bible-based content, prayer, spirit-led facilitators, and the power of God, these small groups can have a lasting impact on the lives of everyone involved.

#3 Be Resourceful

God has provided us with powerful resources.

“For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.” – 2 Corinthians 10:4-5

Prayer… Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. – James 5:16

In the Name of Jesus… Ask, using my name, and you will receive – John 16:24

The Power of Jesus… So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed – John 8:36

The Blood of Jesus… And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony – Rev 12:11

The Cross… He personally carried our sins in his body on the cross so that we can be dead to sin and live for what is right. By his wounds you are healed. – 1 Peter 2:24

The Power of God… Lord my God, I called to you for help, and you healed me – Psalm 30:2

The Power of The Holy Spirit… The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, Because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed – Luke 4:18

The Word… The Word of God is living and powerful – Heb 4:12

God will give you everything you need to help people. Trust Him and allow him to use you.

 

 

Jim Angelakos is an associate pastor at Faith Assembly of God in Orlando, Florida. He is passionate about seeing leaders maximize their talents and lead with confidence and authority. Jim is the author of Life Truths: Ancient Wisdom for Today and a collaborator of Godly Counsel: Scriptures for Today’s World. Connect with Jim on Linkedin.com.

How Healthy Is YOUR Volunteer Team?

Do you experience high turnover? (People leaving the team regularly)

Do team members seem engaged mentally? (When team members serve are they happy, interactive, and thoughtful? Are they there physically and mentally?)

Is there Silo Mentality? (People tend to use "I" instead of "we" or "us")

Do there seem to be a lot of disagreements/issues between team members? (Issues that you as the Leader need to step in and solve?)

Do one or two team members do more than 80% of the work? (Is there a workload imbalance?)

Is there a sense of ownership? (Do team members take on projects as if they have a stake in the organization and want it to succeed?)

Is there a lot of miscommunication? (Do people complain "I didn't know" or "I never heard about that"?)

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