This session was led by Craig Jutila. Someone said that most of this information is in his book “Daze to Knights.” I knew he had this book, but I didn’t think this was about volunteers. I’ve heard Craig on several occasions and I’ve heard most of this stuff before. However, it is good stuff and I really needed to hear it again. Volunteerism is one of the biggest issues in ministry, so everyone could hear this stuff multiple times.

First things:

  • You don’t organize people, you align them
  • You build people first and programs second
  • You understand that without people, you do not nor can you have a healthy ministry
  • Without a mission statement, you will never thrive with your volunteers
  • We are all made differently

One of the problems we have is that we often try to make everyone do the same about of work. People are different. Our goal should be to help them reach their potential.

Craig talked about the 80/20 rule. 20% of your volunteers are doing 80% of the work. It’s a principle… expect this. Those 20% are your high impact volunteers. Of 100% of your volunteers, here is how they might break down:

  • 5% – Influential: Empower
  • 15% – Initiator: Energize
  • 30% – Independent: Equip
  • 50% – Industrious: Encourage

Craig then talked about how Jesus led “volunteers.”

  • 1 Corinthians 15:6 – Jesus appeared to more than 500 followers. He encouraged them by motivating them.
  • Luke 10:1-2 – Jesus appointed 72 and sent them out in groups of two. He appointed them to do a task.
  • Matthew 26:20 – Jesus sat with his 12. He spent time with them, they were his friends.
  • Matthew 17:1 – Jesus took his three aside. This was his intimate group.

We seen in scripture that Jesus spent most of his time with small numbers of people.. investing in them. Jesus spent the least amount of time with large groups. We need to see our volunteers this same way. We need to have a small number that we’re investing in “big time” where we are empowering them to lead others.

A few last points:

  • Resist the temptation to personally “fill holes.” It’s not that you’re better than that… it’s not where you belong.
  • The volunteers who challenge you because they have their own ideas usually frustrate us…. but they are your best volunteers. They have the potential to lead your ministry. You need to invest in them and leak your vision.
  • You’re always going to need volunteers… if your ministry is growing. Synchronizing volunteers isn’t about eliminating your need for more volunteers. However, if you do these things right, you’ll put an end to managing the substitute list every week. Your volunteers will own their ministry.
  • Craig says this works… so give it a try.