Surprise when volunteers do things you don t expect
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How do I handle this?. Surprise! When Volunteers Do Things You Don’t Expect. Volunteer Issues Committee of Literacy Action Network Volunteer Management Conference 2012. Discuss your experience with Volunteers. In small groups or pairs:

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Surprise when volunteers do things you don t expect

How do I handle this?

Surprise! When Volunteers Do Things You Don’t Expect

Volunteer Issues Committee of

Literacy Action Network

Volunteer Management Conference 2012

Discuss your experience with volunteers
Discuss your experience with Volunteers

  • In small groups or pairs:

    • Volunteers who are an excellent fit in your class or program

    • Volunteers who have presented challenges

First impressions
First Impressions

  • Informal Screening

    • First call

    • Brief overview of program

    • Share volunteer expectations

    • Volunteer motivations

Formal screening
Formal Screening

  • Volunteer Applications

  • Interview

  • Background/Reference Checks


  • Position Descriptions

  • Rights and Responsibilities

  • Conduct Agreement

  • Confidentiality Agreement

  • Site tour

  • Calendar

  • Curriculum /Resources

Ongoing feedback
Ongoing Feedback

  • It’s a two way street

  • Volunteers need feedback

  • Program needs feedback

    from volunteers

Exit interviews
Exit Interviews

  • What can we learn from the experience?

    • What worked well?

    • How can we improve?

    • Will you come back or refer friends?

Alternatives to firing
Alternatives to Firing

  • Meet with the volunteer

  • Documentation of the situation

  • Going Forward

    • Coach by Example, Counseling

    • Re-Assign or Re-Vitalize

    • Refer or Retire

Terminating a volunteer the meeting
Terminating a Volunteer– The Meeting!

  • Private

  • Quick, direct and absolute

  • Announce, don’t argue

  • Don’t counsel

  • Follow-up


Small Group discussion

  • Caught Earlier?

  • Coaching opportunity?

  • Risk Management approach

  • Best Solution?

    Discussion with everyone

Volunteer issues committee


MaryJo Bayliss (Metro South):

Allison Runchey (MLC):

Committee Members

Tammi Bernard (Burnsville):

Glenice Jones (Metro North):

Ruth Rodriguez (St.Paul):

Nancy Thornbury

(Franklin Learning Center, Minneapolis)

Thank you
Thank you!

Literacy Action Network

Volunteer Issues Committee

Excerpts from Handling Problem Volunteers, By Steve McCurley and Sue Vineyard, Heritage Arts Publishing/VMSystems. Found in the Energize website library at:

Excerpts from: How to Fire a Volunteer and Live to Tell About It - Document Author: Steve McCurley)