Each summer, thousands of students descend on the nonprofit sector in hopes of doing something meaningful. We welcome them with open arms, knowing that volunteer labor can be a valuable resource if managed properly. It’s often said that a volunteer today is a committed donor tomorrow. We love our volunteers.
But ever so often, we must handle problematic situations that involve volunteers — poor performance, a lack of team work, or clash of personalities with employees or clients. Would your employees have constructive means for addressing these problems, short of dismissing the volunteer? The Standards for Excellence® code emphasizes that nonprofits should provide volunteers with ongoing supervision and evaluation. Specifically, “an organization’s human resource policies should address both paid employees and volunteers, and should be fair, establish clear expectations, and provide for meaningful and effective performance evaluation.”
In short, giving volunteers an opportunity to receive feedback makes a space for problems to be resolved.
Did you know? The Standards for Excellence® program’s educational resource packet, “Volunteer Policies,” includes a discussion on supervising volunteers and sample volunteer policies. The packet is free and available to Standards for Excellence Institute® members. It is available through the members only section of our website. Hard copies are also available upon request.