Thursday 20th June, 2013
4:45pm to 5:30pm
Working with a team which consists primarily of volunteers can make herding cats look simple and straightforward. Not only do you need to find volunteers, but once you have them, you need to foster, encourage, and motivate them to accomplish not only their goals, but your organization's goals as well. This is difficult to do, but not as impossible as it may sound.
The first step is to understand that not every person interested in helping with your project will actually know what they're doing. Most non-profit organizations understand that there's some amount of mentoring required to get even the most talented volunteer ready to actually help. This a step that OSS projects often forget, and it is why recruiting and retaining dedicated volunteers can be so difficult.
I will discuss ways to create an environment that encourages volunteer participation, direction, and retention, using a variety of methods garnered from my experiences in both OSS and non-profit organizations.
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