We enjoyed a full house and a great group of participants in our workshop this week at Volunteer Calgary. Facilitation skills are useful in many different roles and volunteer managers are no exception. Here are a few highlights from the discussion:
1. Be yourself. No matter how prepared or experienced you are, be sure to let your personality shine through! It will help you connect to any group and allow volunteers feel comfortable and eager to learn from you.
2. Keep it varied. Learning styles are as different as the volunteers we engage. Try something new, go to the edge of your comfort zone and you will find yourself keeping your volunteers engaged through those long training sessions!
3. When in doubt, ask. You can always be honest and let your volunteers know you don’t know the answer. You can use time at a break to find the answer, or follow up in an e-mail after your session. Get in the habit of asking other volunteers to participate in answering questions. Don’t forget you have a lot of experience in the room and someone may already know the answer.