How to Motivate Millennials to Volunteer

Organizing volunteers has become an essential part of the sports planning process. But when you have a group of younger employees, it can be challenging to motivate them to lend a hand. Millennials have the lowest volunteering rate of all age groups, according to recent figures released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Only 18.7 percent of adults aged 20 to 24 volunteered between September 2013 and September 2014; those between the ages of 25 to 34 were only slightly better, with 22 percent having volunteered in that time period. The lack of volunteering from Millennials may have to do with their newfound freedom. Studies show this generation is taking longer to get traction in their careers than generations before them. Because of this, there is an opportunity for companies to spend time working with young professionals to involve them in community projects. This can benefit the company too: Studies have shown corporate volunteer programs can increase employee engagement. Here are four tips to motivate your young employees. Establish a Giving Culture It’s important to let your Millennial employees know why your company gives back to the community and how it affects company culture. This will help them see how their efforts can positively affect those around them. The data suggests Millennials want to give back through their workplace and not on their own time, so let them know what the policies and procedures are for volunteering during work hours. Nominate a Volunteer Coordinator Choose someone who is passionate about community service, great at planning events and working with schedules, and who works well with others. Having a coordinator will eliminate the time it takes for others to find volunteer opportunities, and they can easily sign up through the coordinator. Contact Community Service Organizers The volunteer coordinator should make a list of contacts from nonprofits and other companies that offer group volunteering opportunities in your surrounding area. Once the list is established, start contacting these individuals to see what times and dates volunteer projects work for both parties. Take Pictures and Record Time Take pictures of group members in action while volunteering. This will give them something to post on social media, and they will become ambassadors for your volunteering efforts. Also, make sure to log each team member’s time spent volunteering. This will allow them to see their direct effort and gain a better understanding of how they are a part of something bigger than themselves. Maddie Grant, CAE, is editor of and author of “When Millennials Take Over: Preparing for the Ridiculously Optimistic Future of Business.” Find her on Twitter, @maddiegrant.