In a back issue of his Leadership Uncensored newsletter, Ed Young Jr. offers several suggestions for effective enlistment of volunteer leaders. Among his ideas:

Keep vision at the forefront. We do not use the word need in our recruiting. Even though people might fulfill a need for a short period of time, it makes the ministry look like it is struggling. Instead, recruit for opportunities to expand the vision of your church, and you’ll paint a picture of something exciting that people want to help build and grow.

Go old-school with your interaction. Whether it’s recruiting, leading, supporting or appreciating your volunteers, growing a strong volunteer force is a relational endeavor. Don’t hide behind technology when you’re building those relationships! Email is a wonderful tool, but don’t miss the power of communicating in person or on the phone and investing in the individual lives of your volunteers.

Don’t just fill holes. Don’t rush your decision when finding volunteers for leadership positions. It’s better to experience a little short-term pain and do without, than to put the wrong person in place. Because when that person doesn’t work out (and usually you’re going to have to ask them to step out), not only have you lost a leader, but you often lose many of the volunteers on that person’s team because of the negative infection that has set in.

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