We’re continuing our series on how to get more musicians and vocalists for your team! Last week I talked about why people are leaking out of your team, and before that I talked about creating a culture where people are free to leave. I highly suggest reading those posts first, so you can get the full benefit of what we’re talking about! Now on to the good stuff!
I’m about to talk about some pretty high level stuff. So what this means is that this is especially for you leaders, pastors, and staff members.
Do you realize that volunteers are the lifeblood of your team? Why? Because the number of volunteers you have, controls your growth trajectory. This is not only true for your team, but you’re entire church. How would you sustain a 3000 member multi-campus church, with only 6 volunteer musicians? …Or only 3 day care volunteers? …Or only 7 ushers? You can’t!
The bottom line is that you have to grow your number of volunteers if you want to grow your ministry.
The easy part is the strategy of getting/recruiting volunteers. The hard part is KEEPING them!
I’ve seen churches that are masters at recruiting volunteers. They recruit enough volunteers every week to fill the role for an entire year. However, they struggle every week to find people to fill positions. Why is this?
It’s because they do not nurture and KEEP the volunteers they recruit. Their volunteer turn over rate is astronomical. As a result, their church member turn over rate has followed suit and they just cannot seem to grow.
So what is the number one way to KEEP volunteers?
Make them feel connected
You show me a team member that feels connected and like a part of the “family,” and I’ll show you a team member that sticks around for the long run. Nobody just up and leaves a family.
What are you doing to make your team members feel connected? If the only time you talk to your team members is on Sunday, you aren’t doing your job as a leader. You have to really KNOW them. Do you know their birthday’s, their needs, and their struggles? Do you invite them out to coffee, lunch, or to hang out every once in a while?
There’s a few things you can start doing right now to really have them connect:
Give them some responsibility and allow them to take ownership. Whether it’s something as simple as being in charge of delegating electric guitar parts for Sunday, getting their opinions for new songs, or scheduling vocalists. I find that team members are usually honored and love to do this. Not to mention, you’re able to delegate some of the work load.
2. Create a weekly checklist for connecting with team members.
I am very much a goal oriented, checklist creating type of person. So this is right up my alley. Every week, schedule certain number of team members that you get coffee/lunch with and a certain number that you text and call. If a volunteer shares a prayer request, WRITE IT DOWN so you can remember to ask them about it later during the week.
I actually wrote an entire post on why this is so important. Simply put, don’t scatter after a service, CONNECT.
The next thing you have to do as a leader, after you make them feel connected, is to inspire them!
When team members cease to feel inspired, is when the dreaded volunteer ‘burn-out” creeps in. We’ve all dealt with this. A team member tells you they need to “take a break,” or they’re “stepping down” for a while. These are classic signs that a team member is no longer inspired to do what they do.
Imagine you peeled potatoes all day everyday. This task would get pretty tiresome over time and you would eventually want to quit. Now imagine that for every potato you peeled, you fed a child for a day, thus saving his/her life. I’d say that little bit of inspiration changes everything. You might be a little more willing to peel potatoes all day, right?
What are you doing to inspire your team? What are you doing to show them the meaning of what they’re doing? How are you keeping them encouraged week after week? This is your job as a leader. In our potato example, maybe every once in a while you’d have to bring in a kid who’s life they are saving so they can see it first hand. Don’t hesitate to be creative.
Not all volunteers are the same. How much you have to continually inspire them definitely varies per volunteer. Many volunteers will show up 12 hours and never blink. Some easily find inspiration in Jesus. Unfortunately, not all team members are so easily motivated. It’s up to you to continually make sure they are being inspired.
When a team feels connected to something that they are inspired to be a part of, that team will not only grow easily, but they will change the world!
How do you make your team feel connected, as well as inspire them? Share below in the comments!
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You may also be interested in these posts as well:
- Worship Leaders – Why Your Congregation Doesn’t Worship And What To Do About It
- What Every Worship Leader Needs To Know About Electric Guitar
- 9 Worship Band Leading Mistakes: Which Ones Are You Making?
- 4 Reasons Why Your Band Should Stop Practicing and Start Rehearsing