Hands on Help - Volunteers
group magazine: February, 1994
From: February 1994 GROUP Magazine
Keywords: Volunteers Motivating Teamwork Goals Questions
HANDS ON HELP
WORKING WITH VOLUNTEERS
Motivating Young Adults
If you have young adults on your youth ministry team, you know what motivates them is different from what motivates older adults. Here's what Lawrence Bradford and Claire Raines, authors of Twenty-something: Managing and Motivating Today's New Work Force, list as turn-ons and turn-offs for young adults:
*Recognition and praise.
*Time spent with leaders.
*Realize how what they're doing is making them grow.
*Opportunities to learn new things.
*Fun and surprises.
*Small, unexpected rewards for jobs well done.
*Hearing about the past.
*Being watched and scrutinized.
*Feeling pressure to convert to traditionalist behavior.
*Negative comments about their generation's tastes and styles.
"Team" and "teamwork" are '90s buzzwords. How can you turn your group of volunteers into a team?
Two Harvard researchers recently learned that the most effective teams, in all types of organizations, have relatively few members and feature the following characteristics: individual and mutual accountability, a common commitment, a well-defined team purpose, and specific and measurable performance goals.
Team members must agree on who will do particular jobs, how schedules will be set, how the team will make decisions, and what skills need to be acquired.
Who should you recruit for your team? You'll need volunteers with three types of skills: (1) youth ministry expertise, (2) problem-solving and decision-making skills, and (3) interpersonal skills. Look for team members with complementary skills, but realize that skills tend to develop as a team works together.
Your volunteer teammates will also build commitment and trust as they practice mutual accountability, and that, in turn, produces a rewarding sense of mutual achievement.
Do your volunteers know what your ministry's goals are? Do you?
Your youth ministry should have goals that are broader than your day-to-day objectives.
Each goal needs to meet the SMART test by being
Ask your volunteers these types of questions to discover their thoughts and opinions.
*Open-ended-These questions offer a volunteer the chance to be upfront about tough topics. (Example: "How did Wednesday's meeting go while I was away?")
*Comprehensive-In your questions, provide specific topics for a volunteer to focus on. (Example: "What do you like and dislike about your role here? Have you been having any problems?)
*Thought-provoking-Ask questions about your relationship with the volunteer. (Example: "What could I do to make your tasks more satisfying and less frustrating for you?")
Copyrightę 1994 Group Publishing, Inc. / GROUP Magazine