Deciding to do something new is a stretching experience, because it requires resources you do not currently have. Teams and volunteers operate in a similar way gas does in a confined space. Let me take you back to high school science for a second – the nature of gas is that it spreads to fill the space it is contained within. This is true of volunteers and teams as well. A team carries a certain amount of responsibility, and the volunteers on the team create rhythms and habits to accomplish that set amount of responsibility. When you want to add responsibility to a team, you must also add capacity.
Once a leader identifies New Territory that they will go after, the next question they must ask is, “how the heck do we get there?” Taking new territory requires resources – and the greatest of all resources is people. New Volunteers are the key to going from our current ground to the higher ground.
How do you find the right people to jump in and take new territory? Here are 3 things to look for as you identify New Volunteers:
- They Have Chemistry with the Vision – You want to find volunteers that actually “click” with the fresh direction you have identified. Many people can be won over to a vision, but who are the people around you who have instant buy in for the vision? I am a firm believer in the idea that when God births a new vision in a leader He also prepares some people to be drawn in by the vision the first time they hear it.
- They are Willing to Try Something New – New Territory is uncharted, it does not come with step by step directions or GPS guidance. Look for people who are not scared to go first. We all know people who want to be the first to own the new iPhone, the first to try the new restaurant, the first to jump in on something unknown. Find people who are already given towards trying new things, and allow their confidence (whether it be wise or unwarranted) to inspire those around you.
- They Bring Energy – It has been said there are two types of people; those who make things happen and those who wait for things to happen. Go find the people who make things happen and invite them in. Think of an old explorer in a dark cave – they would carry some sort of light or fire to help light up the journey. People with energy light up the journey, and they energize their teammates along the way.