Below, 18 Forbes Nonprofit Council members discuss the key strategies they use to successfully onboard new staff members and volunteers. Read on to find out why prioritizing these elements can help organizations ensure their new public-facing staff are not only prepared but also motivated to excel in their roles.

  1. Ask Them To Own Their Learning
    I onboard public-facing staff by asking them to own their learning themselves. I invite them to use the listening tour model made famous by Michael D. Watkins to accelerate their learning of not only the organization's mission and purpose but also its challenges and untapped potential. That way, they can speak authentically about the organization and its aspirations. - Leila Saad, Common Impact
  2. Ask Them About Their Passion

    People need to be able to articulate a passion for our mission that is compelling and comes from the heart. Our work is life-changing for individuals and their families. If they are stirred by the mission on a deep level, the other pieces will fall into place. - Steven Preston, Goodwill Industries International

  3. Involve Them In The Organization’s Vision And Aspirations
    Engage them in the vision and aspirations of the organization, and encourage them to be curious, creative and conversational about those aspirations. They need a chance to think and talk about where the organization is headed, both internally and externally. Then, listen as they practice their articulation of the vision with stakeholders and provide immediate and constructive feedback. - Randy Wong, Hawaii Youth Symphony
  4. Start Simple
    Keep things simple. A low barrier to entry ensures your volunteers feel confident to get started. For us, the goal is to inspire more students with STEM, and role models are a big part of that. Giving volunteers a clear entry point makes giving back a no-brainer for STEM professionals. - Ron Ottinger, STEM Next Opportunity Fund


  5. Focus On Training
    Train them. Give them the tools and language to use and a story to tell. Help them embrace their commitment to the mission of the organization and be able to express it. Be available for their questions and suggestions, and always have their back. - Magdalena Nowicka Mook, ICF (International Coaching Federation)

Read the full article about volunteering at Forbes.