Getting More Volunteers

I imagine every church, young or old, has asked this question. We have more than 100 people serving on any given Sunday, and yet it seems like we always have new opportunities. How many times in a meeting have I said, “We need to get somebody to…” And occasionally, staff or key volunteers will come to me or Anthony looking for volunteers.

We don’t have a secret list in a drawer somewhere of people that want to serve but aren’t plugged in. I don’t have a pastoral stash of good people just waiting around to do something. Last week, I talked with our staff about these principles.

1. Volunteers will only work under leaders. People that are serving need clear direction and they want to work for someone that has it under control. Volunteers do not want to walk into a mess that needs fixing. It’s much harder, but we need to solve the leadership problem before attacking the volunteer problem.

2. Expand your circle. I don’t know people in our church that are not serving, so coming to me for help isn’t going to accomplish much. Each staff person has a circle, and over time, all those people start serving somewhere. I’ve read that it’s only possible to really only know about 150 people. In a church setting, you’ll get to a point where you are out of people to know. So the key is not making your circle bigger, it’s getting into other circles. You need to ask your key volunteers to intentionally develop their circle, not keep trying to get people out of yours.

3. People need to buy into the ministry, but they also need to buy into you. There’s probably not a lot of people in your church that don’t think kids ministry isn’t important. They don’t hate children and think kids ministry is a waste of money. They think someone should do it. But sometimes, the reason people don’t rush to serve isn’t because of the ministry, it’s because of the leader. There needs to be a personal buy in…a personal connection. They need to trust your leadership and want to follow YOU.

4. Go get ’em. We have 600+ adults that are attending our church on a regular basis. The volunteers we need are already in our building. They are so close. We just need to go get them. We need to develop systems that help us train and empower people. This is hard, and it takes time. But most of the time, the people you need are sitting there doing nothing. They just need to be inspired by the vision, challenged by a leader, and given an opportunity to impact the Kingdom.

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2 comments so far

  1. […] Getting MoreĀ Volunteers […]

  2. […] Getting more Volunteers from Behind the Leaf […]


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