Home Books Resources Articles Workshops Contact Links
Volunteer Power!
Volunteer Power News - Number 76
Author: Thomas W. McKee
"Volunteer Power News" Monthly Newsletter

© 2009 Advantage Point Systems Publishing

A warm welcome to all volunteer managers-those of you who recruit, motivate and mobilize volunteer workers.

You are receiving this newsletter because you signed up or asked to be on the list. Please recommend this e-mail newsletter or ezine to anyone who is interested in volunteer management.

If this newsletter was forwarded to you and you'd like to receive your own personal issue each month, please subscribe to receive free tips on how to recruit, manage and motivate volunteers.

In This Issue
  1. Featured Article: Ten Ways to Energize Your Volunteers for the Fall
  2. Volunteer Power Specials: Special Savings for a Volunteer Power Keynote or Workshop.
Featured Article: Ten Ways to Energize Your Volunteers for the Fall
By the time you get this issue of Volunteer Power, the summer will be almost over. The kids on my block start school next week—August 17. And fall is always a time to regroup and dive into what we do with a special energizing something. What is that something?

Let me suggest you use at least three (or if you really want to see an impact, try five) of the following ten ways to energize your volunteers.

  1. Call five volunteers every week for the rest of the year. That is only one call a day, but you will have talked to over 90 volunteers and said, "Thanks for helping us." Tell them how much you appreciate their expertise, time and service. Ask if they're happy with the way things are going and if there's anything you can do help them.

  2. Be seen. Issue press releases about what your organization is doing. You are not being visible to get volunteers; you are being visible to let your volunteers know that they are part of something significant.

  3. Offer every one of your volunteers a benefit (i.e. T-shirt, Starbucks gift card,) for any new volunteer that they bring to one of your events to help in some way. Look at this as the first date with a pre-volunteer. Even if they don't volunteer again, it will create momentum. (See recruiting is like dating).

  4. Quit spending time with VDP's (very draining people) who always whine but never do anything. This will free up time to call everyone (suggestion #1).

  5. Keep a journal. Write down every contact you have with a volunteer. At the end of the week see how much time you are spending with volunteers to encourage them. Watch the list grow daily.

  6. Invest the time in teaching your staff and volunteer leaders to become better at what they do. How about a Volunteer Power energizing hands-on session with Tom and/or Jonathan McKee for your volunteers? What a way to energize your hard-working team.

  7. Enhance your ability to communicate to your volunteers with a social network. Many of your fellow organizations are doing it successfully. For information on social networking for the non-profit, see TechSoup's "What Can Social Networking Do For Your Organization."

  8. Build significant relationships with complementary organizations. Partnering with local organizations, churches, schools, and businesses expands your volunteer base. For those of you who are our regular readers—remember Bev in "Networking—How to build strategic alliances to find volunteers."

  9. Treat special volunteers in a special way. Every one of your best volunteers is unique. Write them a thank you note with a gift certificate for something they would love. Let them know that they are appreciated. If you have the budget, make it to the best restaurant in town. If finances are tight, the local coffee house is a great treat that just says, "I was thinking about you."

  10. Analyze your retention rate. Have someone on your team build a database to track when volunteers quit. When a volunteer has a change in pattern, call them! If someone volunteers in your office every Monday, call them on Tuesday if he/she didn't show up.

Pick three to five of the above and start today. Make them your fall project and see what happens between now and Christmas.

Special Savings for A Volunteer Power Key-Notes or Workshop
The following are one to two-hour workshops. They are high-energy and full of take-aways.

Key note: "From Green Bananas to WIKIs – the Challenge of 21st Century Volunteer Leadership"

Possible Workshops:

  • The seven deadly sins of recruiting – why you can't find volunteers.
  • The seismic shifts that have changed volunteer management—Volunteer leadership is totally different in the 21st century.
  • Mobilizing the passion of volunteers– how to work with a group of passionate volunteers who each want to do it their way
  • Awakening the passion of the pre-volunteer – marketing your needs
  • Channeling the passion of the volunteer -- training, setting expectations
  • Sustaining the passion of the volunteer – motivation, feedback, rewards and recognition methods
  • Dealing with the high-maintenance volunteer – performance coaching and even firing (and living to tell about it)
  • Empowering the volunteer without dropping the ball – working with the 21st century knowledge worker
Looking for a keynote for your annual convention, or a motivational session for your volunteer leaders, or a workshop to help your volunteer leaders recruit and keep their volunteers? Many of the private sector organizations that have sponsored our presentations for conventions are not able to sponsor these events during these hard times. I know many of you are feeling these cuts.

I would love to help. I will work with your organization to make our fees affordable for you by trying to arrange engagements in the same area to cut travel costs.

If you are interested, send me the contact form with your budget and I'll see what I can do.

Tom McKee
Volunteer Power

Volunteer Power Workshop: Reenergize Your Volunteer Leaders with a Half-Day, Full-Day or Two-Day Volunteer Power Workshop
The New Breed of Volunteer
A Volunteer Power Workshop
Thomas McKee

Recruiting and managing the 21st Century volunteers who want to do it their way

Workshop Content

The 21st century volunteer culture is very different because of seismic shifts that have changed volunteer management. These shifts have impacted the volunteer organization; therefore how we recruit and manage the new breed of volunteer is a whole new game. The seismic shifts include the following:
  • Generations - Gen Y and retiring boomers-the new frontier of volunteers
  • Technology - The addition of the virtual volunteer to the face-to-face volunteer.
  • Empowerment - The knowledge worker demands to be led- not managed
The Two Leadership Factors: Guidance and Trust
  • Guidance - How much hands-on direction do I give?
  • Trust - How much confidence do I have that I can depend on the volunteer?
The Volunteer Power Management Strategy
  • Stage I - Awaken the Passion - The Pre-Volunteer - (Low Trust-Low Guidance)
    • The three levels of motivation
    • The deadly sins of recruiting volunteers
    • The dating process of recruiting
    • The "big idea" method of presenting your passion

  • Stage II - Channel the Passion -- The Passionate Beginner (Low Trust - High Guidance)
    • Communicate expectations five ways
    • Train

  • Stage III - Manage the Passion -- The Talented but often Fragile Veteran (High Trust, High Guidance)
    • Affirm the passionate who are the core of your volunteer team (recognize and reward)
    • Awaken the passion of the veteran volunteer
      • Reframe
      • Refresh
      • Re-assign
      • Re-train
      • Or - if all else fails--Retire

  • Stage IV - Empower the Passion -- The Empowered Volunteer (High Trust, Low Guidance)
    • Delegation vs. empowerment
    • How to empower the volunteer without dropping the ball

Tom's Books: The New Breed and/or They Don't Play My Music Anymore
The New Breed


Here's a glimpse of the Table of Contents:

Introduction: The Common Predicament
Where It All Begins

Chapter 1: Who Is the New Breed of Volunteer?
   A Profile of the 21st Century Volunteer

Chapter 2: Recruiting the New Breed of Volunteers
   The "Courting" Relationship

Chapter 3: Finding the New Breed of Volunteers (Not Scaring Them Away)
   The Seven Deadly Sins of Recruiting Volunteers

Chapter 4: Tapping into Two New Breeds of Volunteers
   Retiring "Boomers" and "Generation @"

Chapter 5: Motivating the New Breed of Volunteers
   Discover Three Levels of Motivation

Chapter 6: Empowering Volunteers to Do It Their Way
   Move from Delegation to Empowerment

Chapter 7: Managing the Virtual Volunteer
   Virtual Volunteers and Using Technology

Chapter 8: Managing High Maintenance Volunteers
   Performance Coaching the Volunteer from Hell

Chapter 9: Leading the Successful Volunteer Organization
   Mobilize the Collective Power of Volunteers

Chapter 10: A Leadership Case Study
   A Fable of How to Do It Right

  • Sample Position Charter
  • Sample Project Charter
  • Interview Guide for Hiring a Paid "Volunteer Manager"
  • Sample Questionnaire for Virtual Volunteers
  • Sample Board Code of Conduct
  • Strategic Planning Retreat - Agenda of Questions
  • SWOT Analysis Form
  • Ice-Breakers and Openers
  • Team Building Activities
  • Sample Training Exercise-A Case Study:


Plan Your Future
When the World
Keeps Changing

Get Tom's Inspiring Book

As we try to navigate the 21st Century in this increasingly fast-paced and technology-driven world, many people are drowning in our culture of unremitting change. In the innovative book, They Don't Play My Music Anymore, Thomas McKee presents a creative approach to facing personal and professional change. He offers eight essential principles that can help you gain the confidence to face an unknown future. Using these techniques, you will develop a new thinking frame by which to approach your future with hope and confidence as you learn to embrace change instead of merely reacting to it.


Tom's Eight Principles
Will Help You Gain the Confidence
To Face an Unknown Future

"In a world where change seems to be happening faster than the five miles every second the Space Shuttle travels, They Don't Play My Music Anymore offers a practical, common sense approach to not only surviving this frenetic pace of change, but building and growing from it. Incorporating Tom's methodology as I chose to make a change in my profession has helped me map out and launch into new adventures in many ways as exciting as the three space missions I flew. I very highly recommend applying these principles!"
Rick Searfoss, NASA Astronaut
and Space Shuttle Commander

Hear Tom McKee Live: Listen to an MP3 of a ten-minute sample keynote presentation by Tom McKee, The Power of Volunteer Passion
Thomas McKee
Who Takes the Fall When Your
Keynote Speaker is Just

You Do!

You can count on Thomas McKee for any size group. He has spoken to over one half million people in Europe, Africa and the United States over the past 35 years and has worked with some of America's top corporations, organizations and associations.
(More info about Tom here)


Click here to listen

Tom McKee is a leading volunteer management speaker, trainer and consultant. You can reach Tom at (916) 987-0359 or e-mail him at tom@volunteerpower.com. Other articles and free resources are available at www.volunteerpower.com

For more articles by Thomas McKee, visit the Articles section on our website.

Subscribe: If this newsletter was forwarded to you and you'd like to receive your own personal issue each month, please subscribe to receive free tips on how to recruit, manage and motivate volunteers.

You're receiving this recurring mailing because you either directly subscribed to the list, signed up on our website, or emailed a request to be subscribed. Volunteer Power respects your privacy: We won't rent, sell, or share your email address with any company, organization, or individual.

Please recommend this e-mail newsletter or Ezine to anyone who is interested in volunteer management. Thank you for reading this month's issue of Volunteer Power News!