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How to Support Your Event Volunteers and Set them Up for Success

How to Support Your Event Volunteers and Set them Up for Success


May 19, 2016 Michelle A. Lee

Who You Gonna Call?
Before you even think about gathering volunteers, you must first plan your event thinking about the theme, purpose, and mission. Technical aspects include: space, date, time, and estimated attendance. Once that is figured out, think about whom you want as volunteers: students or members of the organization – they already know enough about the event to help it run successfully – or, people from the community – their involvement can forge relationships within the community for stronger participation and attendance. Either way you choose, your volunteers will need to be trained for the tasks you want them to do.

Let Em’ Know
Give your volunteers enough information so they are well aware of what is taking place. Having a scheduled meeting the day before the event or a few hours before can be very beneficial to everyone. The more structure they have, the less stressful it is for you.

I Scratch Your Back, You Scratch Mine
Remember that your volunteers are the foundation of you event. They are behind and in front of the scenes helping YOU out. You give them community service hours, but they are giving you their time and energy, so it’s important to keep them happy.

On a Scale From 1-10…
Place volunteers accordingly to their personality; you can do this by having them fill out a form, include a list of jobs and descriptions you will need volunteers to do, and have them rank those tasks as to see which job they prefer. By doing this you are taking the initiative to care about your volunteer’s needs, and avoiding conflict with people disliking the task you assign them.

Don’t Hate; Appreciate!
Lastly, appreciate your volunteers. Recognize them at your event or give them a small gift, make it known that you value their service. Keep them coming back to participate in your events, and make sure they are satisfied with how everything went. Have your volunteers compete a satisfaction survey to collect this data. You can use the survey to measure how well you did with keeping them accommodated and what you can do next time to fulfill the needs that may have been neglected.


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