VolunteerToday.com ~~ The Electronic
Gazette for Volunteerism
MANAGEMENT & SUPERVISION
Return to 2002
| ~ March 2002 ~
- Setting Priorities
- Communication with the Shy
- Leadership Lessons from Mt Everest
Most people who work with volunteers have more tasks
to complete than there are work hours. Here is a system to help determine
where to start.
- Begin by listing tasks that need completion over the next week.
- Next, rate the tasks as to its importance. The most important get
a ranking of one.
- Then assess each task as to when it needs to be completed and rate
with one being the things that needs to be done first.
- Add the numbers in column one and two and place that number in the
last column. This allows you to compare the totals and decide which
things need to come first.
1 High ---------- Low 3
1 High ---------- Low 3
(Add column 1 & 2)
Communication with the Shy
Shy folks are volunteers, too. Here are some tips
for talking with those who are bashful. The tips are designed to increase
their comfort level and help them communicate with you.
- Do not be afraid of silence. Wear a watch with a sweep hand.
Allow 15-30 seconds for the person to collect their thoughts before
you talk. Silence that is comfortable can make the shy person more
comfortable to organize a response.
- Select a quiet place to talk. Close a door, go to a conference
room, reroute phone calls, turn the cell phone or pager off. A calm,
quiet environment promotes communication.
- Slow down your normal speech pattern and the volume. By going
more slowly the shy person will feel more comfortable to interject
- Provide the person with an overview of what you want to discuss.
"I want you to give me two or three ideas about. . ." This
gives them a chance to think about their responses.
Leadership Lessons from Mt Everest
Since the late 1990s, Michael Useem, a professor at
the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania has been
taking 20 business students and executives to the lower slopes of Mt.
Everest. Through this experience, the participants translate the abstract
concepts of leadership into practice. Useem has written extensively on
leadership. Recently he shared some lessons learned from his Mt. Everest
experiences in the pages of the Harvard Business Review.
allow the group's needs to provide direction.
||For some leaders egos and
career can get in the way. Pleasing a supervisor or other professional
colleagues can take precedence over the wisdom of the group. A
monk left Useem's team with two principles. Leadership is built
by serving. When leaders truly serve (pushing down personal needs),
there authority often becomes unquestionable.
nothing is sometimes the wisest action.
||Taking a risky action that
succeeds often brings reward and promotion. Most leaders are risk
takers leaders who encourage people to achieve. However, the effective
leader is constantly assessing hazards, seeking means to protect
the team and the organization, reining in their own desire to
act, when it is necessary.
needs to stick.
||People who manage frequently
have a vision for what they want to do. They tell the people with
whom they work, including volunteers, but the message fails to
stick. When the message is clear to everyone in the organization,
"25% more volunteers this year from last year" there
is no confusion. Everyone knows the focus. There is no doubt what
they are supposed do or what is the goal. Thus, they are not distracted.
up is essential.
||Leaders are not just those
at the top of the organization. They exist throughout the organization,
and the person managing volunteers is one of them. But leading
up can be scary in the hierarchical organization and environment.
Some organizational leaders have blind spots and make mistakes
because no one is willing to lead up and warn them of pitfalls.
Tact, diplomacy, a trusting relationship are required to lead
up, but it is also the sign of the effective leader.
WSU ONLINE CERTIFICATE IN VOLUNTEER
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.
ASSOCIATION FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENT
VOLUNTEER MANAGERS SEEKS MEMBERS
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
Copyright 2002 by Nancy Macduff.
Return to Top of the