Kit Perez has a good article up at American Partisan – How to Motivate Your Group Volunteers. It doesn’t matter if your group is a prepper group, a church group, a hobby club, or any other group of volunteers, you’ve probably heard “You can’t expect volunteers to…” or “We don’t want to lose anyone…” as an excuse for not getting something done. Kit addresses these issues and more.
We’ve all been there, in a group where 2-3 people are motivated, working, and “all in,” only to find themselves carrying the rest of the members. It’s one reason why you’ll also hear some folks brag about “not playing well with others” or telling you how they plan to “go it alone.” Fancying themselves some kind of lone wolf in an overly romaticized notino of what a SHTF event actually looks like, they plan to be a cross between Rambo and Tom Hanks in Cast Away. All they need is a volleyball to name Wilson.
The cold, hard reality is that you cannot survive a SHTF event — whether it be a natural disaster, a man-made one, or some other kind of societal meltdown — without help from others. Neighbors, group members, whatever. Which brings us to the obvious problem: What do you do with slackers in your group? How can you motivate them?
The Volunteer Mentality
Part of what you’re up against is the volunteer mentality. In essence, it consists of people saying things like, “well, we’re volunteers. You can’t expect us to ___________ when we aren’t getting paid.” You may also hear people whispering in your ear that because people are volunteers, if you push them too hard they will leave. “We need bodies,” they’ll say. A body, any body, is better than no bodies…or so the conventional wisdom goes.
There are a few problems with that mindset, however, and here are a few concepts I personally hold to when looking at group members for myself, or helping other groups in a consulting capacity…
Every single member of your group should have a task and a purpose. If they don’t, they are merely takers…