CM TeleSummit – Finding and Keeping Volunteers – Jim Wideman

cmtelesummitIf you read this blog, it will come as no surprise that I have a great deal of respect for Jim Wideman.  I’m glad I don’t have to, but if I had to pick just one person to learn from as it relates to children’s ministry, I would pick Brother Jim.  His talk at the CMTelesummit was no exception.  Here are my notes from his session.  I missed the first five minutes or so of the talk due to some technical difficulties, but someone was kind enough to help me out so these notes include the entire session.

  • How do you find volunteers
    • My God shall supply all my needs
    • The same God that meets every need – we can expect him to help us with volunteers

  • Ministry never designed to be done a select few
    • Never intended to do the work of the ministry all by ourselves
    • God’s plan was that we should go out and make disciples
    • God has called us to be kings and priests
    • Paul told Timothy to entrust the things he heard from Paul to next generation to teach the fourth generations
    • Passing of Gospel designed to be done by a team
    • Our goal is to prepare God’s people for works of service so the body of Christ can be built up
    • “People need to be needed really more than I need the help.”
    • Doing people a favor by finding a place for them to serve
      • Deeper discipleship
      • Greater place of commitment
  • First thing to do is ask what we’re looking for
    • Start with the end in mind
      • What do we want kids to become as adults?
        • Know Jesus
        • Baptized
        • Prayer Warriors
        • Filled with Holy Spirit
        • Understand gifts of the spirit
        • Have a serving heart
        • Have a giving heart
        • Heart for mission
        • Whatever it is – write it down
        • “If you aim at nothing, you’ll hit it every time.”
      • Whatever you wrote, you become that thing
        • Have to have same set of rules for kids
        • Come follow me as I follow the Lord
      • Recruit others who are also examples of these things
  • Get on the offensive
    • Be on the lookout for people who love kids
    • Jesus recruited as he was walking along the way
  • Let your volunteers create other people
    • Jesus didn’t recruit all of his apostles
    • Keep it before your workers
    • Encourage your team to be about recruiting business
  • Be touchable and available and friendly
    • Talk to people
  • Go to church
    • Churches with more than one service have an advantage
    • Everyone needs to take in
    • Ministry is like a checkbook
  • Identify the giftings you are looking for
    • Make a list of every place you could use a volunteer
      • Faith is calling things that aren’t like they are
      • If people were no problem, where would you have workers?
    • Look for people who are vocationally trained to manage people
  • Ways to find workers
    • Look within your organization
      • Who is ready to promote?
      • Volunteer careers
      • Want to be in place where they can be promoted
    • Pray them in
      • Pray for each individual ministry
      • “Things happen when we pray that don’t happen any other way.”
      • Be specific
    • Raise them up
      • From within your own ministry
      • Look for teams that can help
      • High school students
      • “You don’t have to grow up to be used by God.”
      • Children’s equivalent to every adult ministry
    • Qualify all candidates
      • Application
        • You have to at any other job
        • Why not children’s ministry?
      • Check references
      • Background checks
        • Know them that labor among you
        • If whatever company you’re using never had a hit, there might be a problem
      • Interviews
      • Place new volunteers for 30 days with another volunteer
        • Ask questions
        • If not a good fit, move them to another place
  • How do you keep volunteers? – 20 steps to develop leaders who will stay put
    • Start them slow and don’t dump
      • start with a small job
      • start watching
      • very small responsibilities
      • policies and procedures manual
      • What do you want me to do? and How do you want me to do it?
    • Immerse them in your vision
      • Vision keeps us in the ministry
      • Use every method available
      • Every time before group of people, talk about the vision
    • Your volunteers need a model
      • People do what they see
      • Show is far more effective than tell
      • Show people parts of the service – every different part
    • Build Trust
      • Do what you say
      • Prove yourself
      • Let people know you’re good for the organization
      • Positional leadership is one of the lowest forms of leadership
    • Be real and transparent
      • Be normal
      • Be approachable
      • “When you wake up in the morning, your breath stink like anyone else’s.”
      • We all have trials and tribulations
      • Let people know what you’ve struggled with
      • Allow people to have a bad day
    • Invest your time in others
      • Time is the new money
      • Jesus was never too busy for Peter’s dumb questions
      • Allow people to ask questions
      • Spend time with them
      • Difference between delegation and duplication
      • Need to spend time with them to allow them to become like you
      • Need to spend quality and quantity time
    • Believe in your folks
      • Boosts their confidence
      • Greatest thing I can do is give someone else a chance to minister
      • Give them freedom to make mistakes and learn from them
    • Encourage them
      • Everyone can use encouragement
      • Catch people doing things right
      • Always looking for ways to bless people and reward them
      • Idea from Ryan Frank – start every day by writing three thank you notes to volunteers
      • Make a big deal of it
    • Coach them
      • A coach is a teacher
        • Teach about teaching
      • Coaches correct
        • Out of love for them
      • Maintain team spirit
      • Point people to the next level
        • Have them list three things they can do to improve
        • Deadline and plan to coach and teach them to make improvement a reality
    • Ask for commitment
      • Greater commitment has sweeter victory
      • Difference between commitment and sacrifice
      • Commitment takes workers to whole new level
      • When asked for greater commitment, got better workers
      • It’s OK to ask for it
    • Set goals for growth
      • Don’t stay stagnant
      • Spiritual
      • Numerical
      • Structure
      • Evaluation is the missing link
    • Communication
      • Communication takes work
      • Look for every possible way to communicate
      • Meetings with just certain workers
      • Leadership meetings
      • Skill development meetings
    • Give them the tools that they need
      • Every job is easier with the right tools
      • Create an environment where learning can take place
      • Curriculum, supplies, gizmos
      • Tools are important
    • Check on folks systematically
      • People only do what’s inspected not what’s expected
      • Can’t spend all your time teaching children
      • Watch people teach
      • Inspect, Evaluation, Brag on them
    • Conduct regular equipping meetings
      • If you give knowledge and wisdom, you give them the power to succeed
      • Teach new ways and methods to communicate the gospel
      • Look for ways to make them better
    • Care enough to confront
      • Confront
        • Bad attitude
        • Not showing up
        • Not doing what we ask
      • Confront in love
      • One Minute Manager
    • Ask for others’ ideas and opinions when appropriate
      • Some of the best ideas come from other people
      • Always look for people that can help you
      • Run things by them
      • Involve others in the solution process
      • Help other people solve their own problems
      • Listen and encourage
    • Promote and entrust
      • Turn over more responsibility to those who have proven faithfulness
      • People can help in the oversight and training
      • Find other people to lighten your load so you can do the things that only you can do
    • Show them that you value and esteem them
      • People want to be appreciated
    • Give them someone else to develop and disciple
      • People love to teach what they’ve learned
      • Depth at all key positions
      • Every teacher should let someone else teach once a month while they’re there to watch and disciple
  • Process won’t happen over night
  • Need to commit to be leader of leaders
  • Concentrate on what you can do for others
    • You gain those you serve
    • When you are the ministry who serves volunteers, families, etc. God will give you the workforce

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