Now, more than ever, your nonprofit needs to stay connected with its donors and volunteers. Even when things get back to some reasonable normality this year, experts tell us our current crisis will last through the end of the year. So, it’s vital to get your board members, teams, and supporters thinking long-term. But, before we get started on discussing how to recruit volunteers, take a look at a few of the excellent resources available to you. Again, recovery is going to take time, so you must reach out to get all the help you can get.
We all know that Americans are some of the most generous people on the planet. And because of it, the events we’re living through are going to help reset how we move forward in our country. For sure, the nonprofit sector plays a critical role in the collective social good efforts. As our communities and people look to rebuild, millions will turn to nonprofits to get services, but also to support them. That’s why taking a look at your volunteer recruitment is a necessary activity. As a result, this is a time when you want to get as many people as possible involved in your cause. And, that means Gen Z, Millennials, Generation X, Boomers and everyone else.
Think of Volunteer Recruitment In the Broadest Terms
As you look at your marketing, programmatic, and fundraising activities, think of volunteer recruitment expansively. In other words, consider your board members, for starters, as critical volunteers. But, also think of the people who help you in any way as volunteers to your cause. For instance, you might have people who give of their time working with children after-school. Alternatively, you can also think of your donors as volunteers. In other words, volunteer recruitment should include everyone.
So, you may wonder why you should think of donors as volunteers. The reason for it is simple. As you know, contributors don’t have to support your nonprofit organization. There are plenty of nonprofits they can help. However, through thick and thin, many continue to stay with you and give to your organization. The reason they do it is that they care about the collective good. As an example, we know that in today’s fundraising climate, creative fundraising ideasinvolve your champions stepping up and asking the people they know to help as well. That’s why, in my view, donors are an essential part of figuring out how to recruit volunteers.
Tips for Getting the Best People on Board
1. Volunteer Recruitment Begins With Appreciation
People want to be appreciated at any time. Sure, you might have those folks who want to support your cause under the radar. And, you have others who don’t mind a little publicity. However, always, volunteer recruitment and anything you do with your supporters should begin with the words, thank you. People have to know that you recognize their support for your cause.
2. Ask Yourself the Right Questions
Depending on what you want volunteers to do, give of their time, amplify your messaging, or raise funds for you, you have to ask yourself why you need them. Further, you have to know who you want on board. For example, the chances are you want to recruit volunteers who have a connection with you. Those kinds of people make the best workers and supporters for your cause.
3. If You Need Help, Ask
One of the reasons many people don’t get what they want or need is because they didn’t ask. So, knowing how to recruit volunteers means you have to know how to ask for what you need. Decide why you need their help, be it for a fundraiser or to paint your offices, and then just ask for help.
4. Be Prepared for Your Volunteer Leads
If volunteer recruitment and retention for programmatic work is a priority, you have to get prepared. Lucky for you, Donorbox has an excellent piece for getting ready for program volunteers. For instance, learn how to develop job descriptions, draft your recruitment messaging, and encourage your volunteers.
5. Volunteer Recruitment and Enthusiasm
Many nonprofit leaders don’t consider it when they recruit volunteers. However, especially if you have a special campaign or program, you want to recruit people who understand how to promote social good in your community. In other words, you want to involve people who are enthusiastic, dedicated, and ready to jump into the work.
In sum, when you take a broad view of volunteer recruitment and are thoughtful about it, you can get a lot more people involved in your cause. And, if you need more resources, take a look at how to kickstart your social media and also how to take your nonprofit from surviving to thriving.
© 2020 Wayne Elsey and Not Your Father’s Charity. All Rights Reserved.