I am so excited to discuss today’s step in the Worker Realization Model: Training. This is probably my favorite part of the process because this is the leader’s opportunity to truly adopt the new volunteer into the serving community. While the inspiration and discovery steps are incredibly important, the training step is your moment to impart instruction, values, and culture. Your team culture and values are the lifeblood of your ministry. No matter how amazing your new volunteer may be, they must truly become a part of the team to be effective. Training is the only way to bring them into the fold. [bctt tweet="Your team culture and values are the lifeblood of your ministry." username="dukematlock"] If the discovery phase is about helping the team to learn about themselves, the training step is about teaching your new volunteer about your team. What do you want them to know? What are the vital pieces of information they need to have to be successful? This is your chance to answer those questions. If you do research on the best ways to train volunteers, you’ll find quite a few different perspectives. The one thing most of the research can agree on, however, is that it is the organization’s responsibility to make sure onboarding team members have the skills they need to carry out the task with which they have been entrusted. To train properly, you must first identify what it is they need to know. I believe there are five main areas to focus on.  

  1. Culture.

    What kind of team are they joining? How can they contribute to and communicate with this community? They need to understand who you are and how they fit within that framework.
  2. Mission and Vision.

    What is the goal? What are you working toward? The mission will keep your team moving no matter how they are feeling or what they are facing. A strong sense of mission cultivates commitment. Make sure you communicate the mission when onboarding new people!
  3. Values.

    What is important to your team? Your whole team must buy into the team values. An effective team is one that works in harmony toward a common goal. That harmony comes from shared values.
[bctt tweet="An effective team is one that works in harmony toward a common goal." username="dukematlock"]
  1. Department Guidelines.

    If you are bringing in someone to work with minors, they need to know the expectations that come along with working with kids. They probably need a background check and an understanding of the operating procedures. Your department has a specific set of needs; make sure your volunteer understands them.
  2. Leadership.

    Beyond department guidelines, mission, values, or culture, volunteers need to know how to lead. Teach them to lead and empower them to act.
  This process can take believers and make them ministers of the Gospel. It is your job as their leader to give them the skills they need to fulfill that call on their life by providing the proper training. Training is an investment. It takes time, energy, and resources to get your team where they need to be. But once a team member is trained, they can be released into ministry! They can be positioned to make an impact in your church, in your city, and in the kingdom of God.    

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