VolunteerToday.com ~~ The Electronic Gazette for Volunteerism

~ December 2001 ~
  • What is Your PSQ?
  • Tips to Write for the Web
  • Volunteers and Pet Loss

What is Your PSQ?

Managing volunteers, working in an organization or agency, getting to work fully clothed can sometimes require lots of problem solving skills. What is your Problem Solving Quotient? Take this questionnaire and find out.



Do you propose solutions to problems to your supervisor without fretting about the reaction?


When facing a new problem do you seek new ways to solve it?    
Do you seek input from people with whom you rarely agree when trying to solve problems?    
If your solution to a problem is rejected, do you retain your sense of well being and stature within the workplace?     
When seeking solutions to problems do you look for the most recent information on management, materials, technology, or people?    
Do you stick with your "creative" solution to a problem, even when it would be easier to go with the tried and true?    
When a group you are working with suggests a solution that is "not great," do you resist implementing or trying it?    
Do you enjoy taking risks once in a while?    
Do you give credit to others that helped solve the problem?    
Do you suggest solutions that have been rejected previously?    
Have you agreed to try solutions that are completely out of character for you?    
If your solution meets with objections are you willing to rethink and make changes?    
Have you ever offered a solution to your supervisor that might reflect unfavorably on you?    

Total number of "yes" answers?

Using the total "yes" answers read about your score below:

_________ _________

 Scores of :

  • 11-14, means you are an A-1 problem solver
  • 10 ­ 8, you need to try some new things
  • 7 or less, check out some information from the library on
    creative problem solving and get to work!

Tips to Write for the Web

More volunteer managers are writing for e-based newsletters, organizational Web sites, or e-mail volunteer newsletters. Here are some tips to ensure readers absorb the most important information.

Volunteers and Pet Loss


Volunteers often lose loved ones and the staff at the organization has to decide the most appropriate way to express condolences. Human loss is devastating, but so is the loss of a pet. Here is a resource to help with ideas on how to console if the loss is a treasured pet.

Pet Loss Support Website http://www.petloss.com is a resource for anyone losing a pet; cat, dog, bird, or gorilla. You can find poems, articles, chat rooms, and a unique nondenominational ritual called the Candle Ceremony to help ease the pain of loss.

Volunteers who work in animal shelters, zoos, or facilities with a "mascot" animal are especially vulnerable to loss and might not be quick to discuss it. Managers can use this site to remember the special pet and help residents, staff, clients cope with the loss.


Washington State University offers a Volunteer Management Certification Program through the Internet. Individuals around the world can earn a certificate in managing or coordinating volunteers, without leaving home.

For more information, visit Volunteer Today's Portal site, Internet Resources. Look for the Washington State University listing. There is a hot link to their Web site.


The National Association of Volunteer Programs in Local Government (NAVPLG) is an association of administrators, coordinators and directors of volunteer programs in local government. Its purpose is to strengthen volunteer programs in local government through leadership, advocacy, networking and information exchange. NAAVPLG is an affiliate of the National Association of Counties and is seeking affiliate status with the National League of Cities.

Cost is $20 for individuals and $75 for group local government membership. An affiliate membership is $25 and is intended for those who are not local government members but may have an interest in the group. There is a quarterly newsletter, national network, and access to NACo's Volunteerism Project.

For more information contact Glenis Chapin, who is a member of the Executive Committee. She can be reached by phone at 503-588-7990. Be sure to mention you read about this in Volunteer Today.

Copyright 2001 by Nancy Macduff.

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