Finding new people to replace Committee/Board members or Volunteers can sometimes be fraught with difficulty.  We all lead busy lives, and the time when we are able to give our time freely may not correspond to the time your favoured Charity needs your input!

The times when we have been most in need of the services of a Charity, such as a Charity focused around healthcare for example is the time when we are most open to doing some volunteering in the future, but this isn't always the best time to ask.

It's a dilema!

If this is you - and you are in need of a fresh supply of Volunteers or Committee Members look at it in two ways.  First, it's a marketing issue, second it's a recruitment issue. I'll explain more here.

Traditional marketing and Charities may seem a strange blend, as I have mentioned in a previous post, many people who run Charities feel that marketing is best left to the private sector - if that's your belief I expect you are having some difficulties right now recruiting anyone to your committee or board...am I right?

In the past, a marketing post would have talked about the 4 P's...

P P P P

Product (what is it you are really 'selling' or offering and what are the benefits?)

Place (where is the 'product' or service available and where can you get it?)

Promotion (How will people hear about it?)

Price (What does it cost?)

These days - you also need to take Social Media marketing very seriously otherwise you are likely to get left behind.

As a quick activity, look over your marketing material - the information you send to potential Committee Members or Volunteers.  Does it cover the 4 P's?  If not, get it changed as quickly as you can.

Secondly, make a list of how many online forums your Organisation are involved in. (Such as FaceBook, LinkedIn, YouTube and Twitter)  If it's less than 4 -  take steps to put this in place starting now.  Who does the posting, it needs to be the person who knows your charity the best, which is often one of the senior management team.

We have developed a course via 'The Fundraisers Academy' for Charitable organisations to get themselves started on Social Media forums, please contact us for more information.

As for recruiting people onto your Committee or into your Volunteer base, getting the right person is as important as getting the right marketing message!  Often, Charities accept the wrong kind of Volunteer because they are overly keen for 'anyone' to help out.  Any role within your organisation should be treated as though it were a paid role.

There must be a job description (for all roles - even for voluntary fundraisers), people want to know their remit and the extents of their role.  This helps get the right person into the right role and also helps the Charity know the kind of person they are looking to recruit.  There must also be proper management of each role.  The Volunteer and Charity match must be a win:win scenario - there must be as much advantage to the Volunteer as there is to the Charity in having that Volunteer with them.  Are you offering ongoing training for example?

In the 'Fish' level one Distance Learning course "Getting Started" there is an entire module on recruiting the right Board...Trustees can play an absolutely vital role in your organisation and so should be chosen with extreme care.

Auntie Doris and Uncle Fred from down the road are  wonderful people, and may have been life-long friends with your CEO, but will they have the necessary skill and knowledge to help the organisation through difficult times or manage a significant pot of money?

Committees should be made up of the kind of people that can help move your organisation forward and bring specialisms with them.  If Uncle Fred is a Solicitor or other professional brilliant...maybe Auntie Doris is a Doctor...fantastic!  Consider your Committee and what their skills are and match these with the skills your organisation need - this will tell you what gaps you have and what kind of Trustee you are now looking for.

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