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Retaining People

After spending time and effort to recruit new volunteers, you want to do everything possible to keep them coming back, week after week.

And let’s face it – this isn’t rocket science: people just want to feel valued, supported and part of the club 

Here are a few tips to get you started:

Make a Good First Impression

Think about how you introduce new faces at the club. Do you have an induction process in place for new members and volunteers? Do you hand out a Club Handbook? Do you make people feel welcome?

Make People Feel Comfortable

Ease people into the club and make them feel part of things. Volunteers might also appreciate some mentoring. Simply assign one of your more experienced volunteers to the new recruit for the first few weeks so they learn the ropes more quickly.

Check How Things Are Going

It can be tricky to find time to regularly sit down and speak with your volunteers but you should try and meet with them on a one-to-one basis at least once a year. This will help you find out:

  • if they need any additional support or training
  • if they want to change roles
  • whether they want more or less responsibility
  • if they would be interested in sharing a role with another volunteer
  • how they feel the club is managing its volunteers

Communicate Clearly with Your Team

It is sometimes easy to overlook volunteers, players, and parents when making important decisions for your club. Keep everyone up to date with policies and developments which may affect them. Consider doing the following:

  • Holding briefings
  • Communicating via social media e.g. through private Facebook group
  • Including sections in your newsletter specifically for volunteers, players, parents and coaches

Outline Commitments with Terms of Service

The thought of taking on a committee role can be daunting. We now live in a world where it seems everyone is busy. So, to help retain your committee members and helpers, it might be a good idea to allocate a term of service to each role.

This will clearly show your volunteers the duration of their commitment. A one year term that can be renewed at each AGM might be an attractive option also as it’s not a particularly long term commitment.

Why don’t you ask a few volunteers to see if they think this would work in your club?

Reward and Recognise Your Volunteers

Make sure to recognise your volunteers and reward their hard work. Volunteers, in particular, can go unnoticed. But they are the lifeblood of sports clubs - without them the majority of clubs just couldn't function. They are extremely valuable and deserve considerable praise and thanks, so it is essential that volunteers feel their role and actions are important and valued.

We’ve plenty of tips to help you show you value your people and retain your volunteers.