Many non-profits miss out on properly leveraging their volunteers. Every day, people are pouring over websites like Powered By Professionals for volunteer opportunities. Some non profit organizations will request a phone call or in-person interview so they can get to know the volunteer in advance of an event to assign them the correct role. Other organizations will request that you fill out an online survey with your interests. In case you don’t get advance one-on-one time with the event coordinator, here are brief descriptions of volunteer positions you may encounter, and what personality traits match each position:
Qualities: Extrovert, Friendly, Organized, Big Smiles
Registration is the first opportunity for an organization to make an impression on a guest so it needs be perfect from the start. It needs to be handled quickly to prevent bottlenecking at the front of the venue and to ensure that the guest does not feel like their time is being wasted. Registration volunteers need to warmly welcome all registrants, and know who to turn to if there are any issues or challenges. It does not take much for someone to go from happy attendee to disgruntled donor. Registration volunteers need to make the guest feel appreciated for coming to support the cause with their time & donation, and send them into the event quickly.
Qualities: Takes direction, Autonomous, Organized, Strong
Event day has a lot of moving parts – it’s important to have a team of volunteers who can listen to directions and get things moving without constant supervision. A nonprofit event management coordinator can’t be everywhere so they’ll often empower one volunteer to oversee different sections – registration table, silent auction, info table, and the like. Volunteers also help clean up the left over boxes in an organized manner so packing up at the end of the night is quick and efficient. This is an invaluable position for some organizations, and perfect for anyone looking to help out before and after an event.
Qualities: Knowledgeable, Responsible, Quick Learner
Events are a great way to educate the crowd on a non-profit’s mission, achievements, and future events. This volunteer must be able to cite specific information about the organization, and be knowledgeable enough to answer general questions about the organization. However, the volunteer does not have to know everything. They should always be able to reference a non-profit staff member for very specific questions. This volunteer may also be trusted to collect donations.
Qualities: Mobile, Networker, Encouraging
A silent auction is a great way to generate more day-of contributions. It helps to have a volunteer who is not afraid to greet guests viewing the items and who encourages them to bid. These volunteers need to be on their feet until auction close-out, walking around the tables to make sure the displayed items are secure and placed correctly on the table. They will need to check bid sheets to make sure the minimum increases have been met per bid, and that writing is legible for post-event follow-up.
Qualities: Patient, Creative, Responsible
Endurance events like run/walks often have a kids’ area with bib coloring and mini activities. This is a great opportunity for high school students or youth groups. The area needs to be kept in order and often cleaned to keep items organized. Volunteers should not be tasked with being responsible for the children but they need to interact with the kids and make sure everyone is all smiles.
Qualities: Dedicated to the cause, Networker, Has time
This role is for volunteers looking for an active role in planning the event. Usually they have a direct connection with the cause that will motivate them to reach out to their friends to attend, solicit raffle prizes, or approach companies for corporate sponsorships. They will attend at least one committee meeting in advance and interact with other members. Great opportunity for someone looking to get involved in an organization long term and become a valued volunteer.
If you are interested in finding out about volunteering opportunities, please contact us.