Volunteer participation is the backbone of many small nonprofits. However, the trick to keeping volunteers engaged and organized are effective volunteer meetings. After all, volunteers don’t usually get involved with an organization with a mind to attend meetings, they want to help your cause! So you need to keep your meetings direct and effective—dare we say fun? You want your volunteers involved, listening and organized.
Much of the success of a volunteer meeting depends on the legwork done before the meeting. Take some time to develop the agenda, make sure there is continuity or a natural flow of agenda items.
One of the most important parts of an effective meeting is starting and ending on time. Announce start time and end time, and if needed assign a time keeper to keep people on topic and on time.
We offer three sample agendas. You will see that the first one is quite basic. The second agenda provides more structure and a few items to do before the meeting. The third agenda is the most structured and would work well for a group that requires a lot of focus and direction.
To help you in your pursuit for effective volunteer meetings, here are 3 sample agendas:
Date and time:
- 8:00 Welcome, review agenda, confirm next meeting
- 8:15 Review purpose of team and meeting
- 8:30 Overview of activities, review and discuss
- 8:45 Clarify action items and next steps
- 9:00 Meeting Adjourned
Date and time:
Pre-meeting: Leader reviews objectives of the meeting
Pre-meeting: Review Roles: Leader, Recorder, Timekeeper
- 8:00am Welcome, introductions, review agenda, timeframe
- 8:10 Discuss expectations
- 8:20 Work through Agenda items
- 8:45 Make action plan, assign action steps
- 8:50 Plan next agenda
- 8:55 Evaluate Meeting
Please utilize these sample agendas at your next meeting and keep your group on the straight and narrow. A little forethought and planning can go a long way at having a successful and effective volunteer meeting!
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