Some quick tips:


#VolTipTalk Leave volunteering information at local physicians’ offices.

#VolTipTalk host volunteering sessions for home schooled children and parents. Contact local home school associations

#VolTipTalk leave info at travel agencies who book voluntourism trips. That feeling of wanting to help might just carry over when the trip takers get back

#VolTipTalk org a positive protest create signs promoting volunteering and pick a street corner-good for small groups of episodic vols

#VolTipTalk set the tone in reply emails-phrases like welcome to an experience you’ll cherish, you’re about to begin a journ like no other

#VolTipTalk Save compliments about vols, use as recruitment testimonials, keep in book for vols to read, share at meetings, trainings etc.

#VolTipTalk recruit by cross referencing-pets work with seniors, retirees work with children etc to appeal to new audiences of prosp vols

#VolTipTalk reach more prospective vols by a presentation on volunteering in general, partner with other non profits

#VolTipTalk recruiting? Advertise perks of volunteering-our vols enjoy monthly yoga classes, quarterly relevant education, networking, etc

#VolTipTalk recruiting students to vol? Sponsor an essay contest about your mission, involve media.

#VolTipTalk Hold regular brainstorming sessions with vols to recruit new vols keep their interest up in helping find new vols

#VolTipTalk create vol recruit ads from current popular books, movies-Ex: Eat, Pray, Vol or Transformers: Age of Volunteers

#VolTipTalk send thank you letter to potential vol after meeting/interview. Outline various jobs, use testimonials to engage

#VolTipTalk Experiment and create 3 ads for 1 vol job make 1 about actual task 2 about how it helps the client 3 about the benefit for vol see which one works

#VolTipTalk create template of recommendation letter for vol. Advertise “this can be yours” to students, folks looking for job exp.

#VolTipTalk Host “bring a buddy” open houses where your vols recruit a friend. They know who will make a great vol and can motivate too!

#VolTipTalk Get staff involved in recruiting vols. Offer prize at end of year for most vols recruited, referred, for certain positions etc.

#VolTipTalk send thank you notes to vols’ family for sharing volunteer with you. Might just recruit them too!

Corporate Volunteering:

#VolTipTalk offer to host an onsite corporate vol event-limit it to only as many vols as you can handle at a time. Ask mrktng to help

#VolTipTalk advertise event as a team building experience

#VolTipTalk prepare thank you letter to CEO

#VolTipTalk it’s the little things, give packet of welcome info on parking, food, what to bring etc.


#VolTipTalk Elevate vol job status in eyes of vols and org by professional treat – job descrps, attire requirem, skills needed etc.

#VolTipTalk Save compliments about vols, use as recruitment testimonials, keep in book for vols to read, share at meetings, trainings etc.

#VolTipTalk Beyond vol weeks-create your own vol day at your org so that your vols know they are appreciated all year

#VolTipTalk Hold regular brainstorming sessions with vols to rework job descriptions, tasks etc.

#VolTipTalk Conduct informal “stay” interview to keep vols from leaving-ask what might cause you to leave

#VolTipTalk Create welcome committee of vols to welcome new vols at trainings, open houses etc

#VolTipTalk start an inspire newsletter-share articles that inspire you with vols and tell them how they inspire you too.

#VolTipTalk Reporting on Vols? Use strong words like enhance, enrich, strengthen, develop, amplify, boost, magnify, betterment, growth

#VolTipTalk Create checklist for new vols-use calendar reminders to follow up on obtaining paperwork, background check etc.

#VolTipTalk create chart for prosp vols with followup schedule-phone at 1 week, letter at 1 month etc. see patterns of success

#VolTipTalk Keep stories you hear of amazing volunteer work. Keep journal, notes – refer back often and read for your own inspiration

#VolTipTalk Tired of Vol of the Year Awards that single out just one? Give month or week awards-cute, serious, let vols give you award too!

#VolTipTalk in addition to yearly vol perform eval, conduct engagement eval-their perf and org’s perf in engaging them-promote team

#VolTipTalk conduct survey with clients on vols- record positive statements as testimonials- use in reports, recruiting etc

#VolTipTalk Create book of vols-photos, quotes on volunteering-display where staff and esp clients can see all the support

#VolTipTalk Learn 1 fact about each vol -kid’s names, fav hobby- write down and refer to -makes it easy to build on to know vols better

#VolTipTalk create student led projects such as own fundraiser or survey their peers- its a great skill on resume for college

#VolTipTalk Mini education for vols-create distribution lists and email educational articles; encourage them to find more and share.

#VolTipTalk Too many volunteers with creative ideas? Create a volunteer think tank for those volunteers with improvement ideas. Task them to pick one idea and create a pilot program. Give them ownership.

Staff and Volunteer Relations:

#VolTipTalk create a spa day for vols to host, giving staff some pampering and appreciation, hopefully create more appreciation for vols

#VolTipTalk Create survey for staff: How do you view vol services? Make it funny, serious, but look for ways to correct misconceptions.

#VolTipTalk Staff stops u in hall with vol request? Always email a synopsis of your understanding of discussion. Avoid miscommunication.

#VolTipTalk Create awards for staff who excel at engaging and recognizing volunteers. Give award at annual volunteer event.

#VolTipTalk Keep birthday cards for volunteers on hand. Bring the cards to staff meetings and pass around to get staff signatures. Nice recognition on volunteer’s birthday.

#VolTipTalk Gather staff testimonials on volunteers. Share with the volunteers via email blast, newsletter, etc.


#VolTipTalk Creating categories of volunteers explains numbers available vs. one broad number. Categories can include active, temporarily out, episodic, event only, emeritus, etc.

#VolTipTalk Create a centralized location to post volunteer stats such as how many vols are currently active, inactive, temporarily on leave, etc.


#VolTipTalk send a letter to a new vols’ former vol manager letting them know how much the vol appreciates all the guidance and thanking them for helping shape vol

#VolTipTalk create a library of publications you endorse to lend to your volunteers – ask them to help make the library grow

#VolTipTalk create a mantra/goals board-keep in plain sight for vols, staff, clients and administration. Show what YOU work to accomplish

#VolTipTalk want a kitschy fun way to talk about a vol at a meeting? Print out vols’ pic and attach to a craft stick-hold up so folks can see him or her

#VolTipTalk send holiday cards to former volunteers and thank them for their service-it just feels right

#VolTipTalk want to involve school kids? Host poster contest about your org. Give trophy and enlist media. Recruit parent/child vols.

#VolTipTalk need to speak at civic groups? Bring vols who sing, play music etc to break ice & keep talk from being too dry

#VolTipTalk Make vol name badges special by adding icons to indicate level of expertise-mentor, ambassador etc. Visually helpful too

#VolTipTalk Long time vol has to retire? Invite them to help orient new vols, give in-services, write manuals, handbooks. Call them sages.

#VolTipTalk We walk fine line when vols step up into a leadership role. Do not relinquish control-encourage but have final say.

#VolTipTalk At events, spend time with each volunteer and do informal survey on event success, etc. Report findings back to event mgr

Skilled or Pro Bono Volunteers:

#VolTipTalk when a request for a skilled volunteer comes in, ask what policy exists for this volunteer’s license (if they posses one) and if that license is on the line for any potential mishap.

#VolTipTalk Lucky to have a skilled volunteer but don’t like the term skilled? Try pro bono or volunteer consultant instead. Both terms imply episodic and elevated involvement.