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The younger-friendly volunteer culture

28 April 2017 509 views No Comment

The younger-friendly volunteer culture
- by Thomas McKee


The younger generation will respond to a volunteer culture that looks like, feels like, and acts like the following:  


•  Win/win 
•  Efficient 
•  Technologically up-to-date 
•  Fun 
•  Team based 
•  A place to learn 
•  Fun 
•  Empowered—a high level of freedom 
•  Cut-to-the-chase decision making 
•  Flexible—not one size fits all 
•  Fun 

What does all of this mean for you as a volunteer manager (Rotarians)? Here are some suggestions for how you can use this information to better manage Gen Xers and maximize their productivity and contributions to your organization: 
•  Establish project-driven relationships, not "hugy-feely" relationships with them. 
•  Recruit younger volunteers to work on teams with dynamic leaders who will act as mentors, care about them, and demand high performance. 
•  Stay in touch, offering constant very specific feedback. 
•  Never micromanage. 
•  Let them be creative and do things their way. 
•  Listen to them express their opinion. 
•  Value their new ideas. 
•  Be specific about the end results of the project they are working on. Be sure they understand that you are depending on them to meet the deadlines. Establish certain checkpoints during the course of the project. 
•  Empower younger volunteers to work at their pace, making their own day-to-day decisions, mistakes and creative solutions. Let them know that you are holding them responsible for the end result. 
•  Encourage questions and be generous in sharing information about the organization and the project. 
•  Train younger volunteers on skills and competencies that not only help your organization but also are something that interest them. They love win/win contractual relationships. They love to win and be rewarded for the effort that they put in.
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