The 1-2 Punch For Recruiting Volunteers

I posted a survey to start to year to ask church planters and church leaders where they feel stuck. An overwhelming number of people asked about recruiting volunteers. This is a huge topic and I look forward to getting into this year. Today we’ll start with the two sides of the recruiting coin.

When it comes to recruiting, there seems to be two sides. One side begins and ends with vision and has vision in the middle too. The other side would say the actual need is the be all end all.

Maybe I’m just a people pleasing peacemaker but I would tell you that you must live in the tension of balancing the vision and the need when recruiting.

The Vision

Too often we make the assumption church attenders know why taking the step to volunteer is vital for their growth. And when they don’t we blame them for not taking the step. A volunteer needs vision for themselves as individuals and the church as a whole as to why serving is important. We use Ephesians 4 for this.

We must “equip (people) for works of service” so the “body of Christ might be built up”.

The body of Christ, the Church, is built up when we help our people grow up. Now, I wouldn’t say “Hey, grow up and serve already!”. But I would say “Taking the step to serve in our church is vital for your growth and for the building up of our church”.

We call this our Grow Up To Build Up strategy. 

The Need

Start with vision but be sure to communicate the present need in your church for volunteers. A lot of times people sit in the seats of our churches and think “Man, they got this thing figured out”, all the while you’re really short on volunteers.

Determine the number and then display it. And don’t just talk about the basic need while neglecting to inform people what exactly the need is. For some people, all they need to know is there is a need for them to fulfill it. You need to keep the whole need in front of your church and communicate specific needs on an individual basis.

What is your current need? Is it 5 or is it 50? Whatever it is, start with a compelling vision for them and your church, then follow that up with a specific need for them as an individual.

What do you tend to overemphasize -

the vision or the need?