Showing posts from June, 2011

Now that sounds more like it for Volunteer Management!

Spotted something exciting happening in the U.S.

Erin Barnhart is an internationally recognized expert in domestic and international service and volunteer engagement. She has been quoted by such media sources as, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, New York Post, The Boston Globe, Smart Money, Marie Claire, and Budget Travel and has developed and delivered effective engagement tools, trainings, and resources for volunteers, volunteer resource managers, and organizations worldwide.

Erin has put together a "Volunteerism and Volunteer Management" course for Portland State University. She will be joined by Jayne Cravens and Kathleen Joy of Oregon Volunteers to present a series of intensive classes focused on those who work with volunteers in any capacity - or those that want to.

Jayne is an internationally-recognized professional with more than 20 years of experience regarding communications, volunteer involvement/community engagement, and capacity-building on a…


Where there is a vacuum of leadership there is an opportunity for dissenting voice. You see this quite often in politics. You don’t expect this in Volunteer Management.

Volunteer Management is not political nor does it conjure up ideas of dissent or disagreement. After all, the definitions and theories behind volunteerism are seen to be well and adequately defined by those who believe they have the moral right to say what is and what isn’t in the field of volunteerism.

Pity that!

In the Volunteer Management sector, things just seem to roll on. A few localized and encouraging waves towards the true advancement and professionalization of the sector wiped out by the tsunami of indifference by a sector that struggles to find its political voice and fundamental raison d’être.

To those who are perplexed by my talk of politics, dissent and such matters then you have obviously not been a follower of this blog and the message I seek to propagate.

But seeds of hope have been set.

More blogs …


Last Wednesday night during a big football game here in Oz betwwen Queensland and New South Wales, the Queensland based beer company XXXX ran a great ad about the people who put their hands up to help during the flood crisis in Queensland. I think its a powerful ad. I would have loved to hear the "volunteer" word but people will get the drift. Have a look by clicking on the title of this post

Volunteers are awe inspiring!

Why volunteer management requires specific skills

I came across some great writing on Volunteer management today thanks to a twitter prompt from Rob Jackson from Rob Jackson Consulting Ltd

Skills - Third Sector is an organisation based in the UK that helps to make sure that charities and social enterprises have the right people with the right skills to make a difference to people and their communities.
They believe that a thriving voluntary sector is crucial to building stronger communities and delivering good quality services.

Here’s some of what they say about Volunteer management in a position statement released on May 31st this year

“Skills – Third Sector champions the skills of volunteer management. From our research and experience we know that the nature of volunteering means that people who manage volunteers require specialist skills – skills that are distinct from those needed to manage paid staff. By skills we mean the knowledge, understanding and experience that someone needs to do their job well.”

I like this language on…

Susan Ellis on Tour - and a snapshot by VOLQLD TV

Thanks to the efforts of Volunteering Queensland, OZVPM and People First Total Solutions we had the honour of having Susan Ellis touring Australia recently. I had the privilege of seeing Susan at workshop in Brisbane Australia.

Volunteering Qld have developed A TV Channel which I believe to be an innovative step for any volunteer agency in the globe
It features a regular mix of best practice features on organisations leading volunteering, evocative stories detailing interesting, meaningful volunteer experiences and news on volunteering trends, issues and happenings.

I have talked about this agency taking a leading global position on leadership in matters volunteering before and here is a perfect example
They have great people doing great things in my opinion.

And I am lucky to be a witness to that as I reside in Queensland.

The volunteers they have working on VolunteeringQLDTV are most impressive.
By clicking on the title of this posting you get to see their production and report of…

Volunteer Management: Perhaps our greatest weakness is not realising our own power.

Power. – “The ability, strength, and capacity to do something - control and influence over other people and their actions” – The Encarta Dictionary.

Lord Acton wrote that power corrupts and I bet you never viewed Volunteer Management as a position of power. Power and Volunteer Management don’t seem to belong in the same sentence – don’t seem to be a natural fit. And good grief why would I be pitting them together when after all other word combinations seems to sit uncomfortably in our profession.

Such as:

Career aspiration and Volunteer Management

Education pathway and Volunteer Management

Financial security and Volunteer Management

Consultancy and Volunteer Management

The above 4 are surely a blog for another day. If you have doubts on what I am saying or difficulty understanding just look at the combinations again and change Volunteer Management into Human Resource Management.

So basically there are positions or philosophical places or contemplations where Volunteer Management is a…

Boldy going where no Volunteer Manager has gone before


"I was out doing volunteer management when your grandfather was in diapers" -- Kirk

"But this is the court of the year 2079, by which time all 'United Earth' nonsense had been abolished and Volunteer Management had been recognised as a profession" -- Q, presiding in a postholocaust court (Encounter at Farpoint – Star Trek The Next Generation)

"interesting career this volunteer management is, isn’t it?" -- Spock
It has always been so. -- Sarek
Indeed. Why did you choose this one? -- Spock
It seemed the logical thing to do at the time." -- Sarek (Journey To Babel)

"Please, Spock, do me a favor ... 'n' don't say Volunteer Management’s `fascinating'..." -- Dr. McCoy
"No... but it is... interesting..." -- Spock (The Ultimate Computer)

"Computer, we have decided to support IVMD, abort self destruct sequence; authorization Janeway, pi, 1, 1, 0" -- J…

Some Quick Bites

Who bites for Volunteer Management?

Should professional associations for Volunteer Management become more political and vocal about all matters volunteerism? If they adapt the philosophy of only dealing with matters pertaining to Volunteer Management specifically do they risk lessening their impact on decisions and dialogue on volunteerism? Volunteer Management is only one spoke in the wheel of volunteer management. Our associations should be having a say on everything happening within the volunteerism sector. Adopt a position people…please..really..Any type of position will do for now. It beats silence. And don’t tell me it’s not your brief because then I don’t know what brief you have.


Anybody at the most recent retreat for advanced volunteer management want to give us a review?

Please email me.

A Seinfeld moment in Volunteer Management

Where is the conference for Volunteer Management in Australia? It doesn’t exist at the moment. Ive thought of a title and slogan:

VPM Festivus –…

Another Response to "A bit rich for Volunteer Managers"

According to blogspot - "We're investigating an issue which is preventing login and comment posting for some users, and hope to have a fix released shortly.Thanks for your patience in the meantime. — latest update on Tuesday, May 24, 2011"

There are still problems as some readers of this blog are unable to post. As previously mentioned, please email me fi you would like to post a comment and are unable to do so on this site. Hopefully the issue will be rectified soon.

In the meantime I recieved this reply from Andy Fryar of OZVPM

"Thanks for raising this issue DJ.

I'm one of those who would certainly take up exhibit space if it was available, and have no qualms with stating up front that as a small business this would be a great place for me to advertise commercially.

My big beef with VA choosing not to have exhibit space however is far broader than me simply not being able to promote the prodcuts I have to sell

I actually believe that a conference should be a…

Reply to Post on “ A bit rich for Volunteer Managers”.

Some people are having difficulty lately posting replies to my blog. I am befuddled as to why although a colleague has pointed out that Google is having some technical problems of late with their blogs. If so I hope this is rectified soon.

So if you are having difficulty posting please email me and I will post your replies on my blog.

One such reply came from Sue Hine. Sue was replying to my blog “ A bit rich for Volunteer Managers”.

I would have posted in the reply section of my blog but the word count exceeded the reply amount. And I decided that every word of this passionate response should be seen.

Thanks Sue.

“You are highlighting an infection in our industry - one that pushes us to corporate business aspirations. When we forget our origins we become no better than the profiteers and exploiters that did so much damage to our communities in the past.

This is nowhere more evident in your assertion (June 3) that IYV+10 "isn't meaning much to some". Maybe it is ove…

Valentines and Volunteers

Came across an interesting article with an interesting perspective on the website for the Association of Volunteer management (AVM ) in the UK. Written by N Shaw (sorry..not sure what the N is for ) it got me thinking about Volunteers week and other occasions that are utilised to thank volunteers.

The link is in the title of this blog. AVM has got some good articles and blogs on Volunteer Management and volunteerism and is well worth a look.

A bit rich for Volunteer Managers

The next National conference on volunteering organised by Volunteering Australia - VA - takes place this year. Yep – we had one last year too but because it's IYV plus 10 it’s deemed a significant year to hold another. I am sure some research goes in to these years but I can tell you as a Volunteer Manager on the ground that IYVplus 10 isnt meaning much to some.
If you want to have a display at the next VA conference it will set you back a few bucks. According to my sources space is a privilege of sponsorship and not available on its own. Sponsorship packages range from $15,000 to $50,000.

Is this therefore a barrier to:

•Small businesses who are engaged in volunteerism or volunteer management consultancy

•Representative Organisations such as the Australasian Association for Volunteer Administrations

•State centre’s for volunteering

•Any community organisations with an interest to promoting itself.

Sure I understand and applaud the attempt at engaging big business to sponsor…