Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Tuesday's Tip

Look for a Smile!
Are you needing a volunteer for something? Finding someone with a positive outlook in all situations can mean the difference between an ok volunteer leader and a great one.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Tuesday's Tip

You Have Permission!
Sometimes as a leader you have to give yourself permission to say no to good and right things at just the right time. Take the phone off the hook for an afternoon and do a happy dance; set regular, guilt-free hours to enjoy homeschooling your kids; delegate as many jobs as you can, and by all means, take time to feast on the delicious Word of God each and every day.

We at Homeschool Group Leader are going to practice what we are preaching. For this week only, there will be no Friday's Answer. Enjoy your families, we'll enjoy ours, and have a Christ-filled Christmas!

Many Christmas Blessings,
Kristen & Denise

Friday, December 19, 2008

Friday's Answer: Be the Bad Guy!

"How do other leaders deal with members who always RSVP and pay for events late?"

Ring! It's a another sign up after you have already turned in the final count. You let a little exasperation show in your voice as you make promises to work them in. They apologize, but you know they will do it again. What can you do to relieve the stress and extra work? Here's our best advice.

1. Communicate your deadline well – Make sure you give your members plenty of advance notice of any deadlines, especially anything that’s going to cost. Communicate the details and deadlines through several different mediums, such as in your newsletter, during meeting announcements, and by e-mail.

2. Set it and forget it – Set your deadline and don’t doubt yourself. If you ask for an RSVP, then it is reasonable to expect members to make a quick phone call or drop a short email to let you know they’re coming.

3. Stand your ground – Be willing to be the bad guy and say no to those who want to sign up late or don’t deal well with boundaries. Whatever level of excellence you expect of your members is what they are going to rise to over time.

4. Retrain the brain – Leave your members options as you retrain them to RSVP or to pay on time. For example, they are welcome to pay late, but it will cost extra. In doing so, you are rewarding those members who faithfully pay on time.

5. Mercy has its place – There is a time and a season for everything. And there is a time to stand your ground, and there is a time to extend a deadline. If you discern extenuating circumstances or feel mercy is the best call, then don’t hesitate to make an exception. Even bad guys have a soft side.

Here’s a secret to leadership success. If you set your deadlines a couple of days earlier than you really need to, then when you get those late calls, you always get to say yes and be the good guy.

Christmas blessings,

Denise & Kristen

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Tuesday's Tip!

Say “Cheese!”

Drop by your local newspaper with a photo from your group’s latest activity. Include a caption, and don’t forget to use your spell-check!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Friday's Answer: Web Site Apathy

“How to get more participation? We have over 100 families on
our yahoo loop and yet only about 10 show up to different things. We are averaging 2-3 families per event.”
Three things come to our mind here.

#1 As a yahoo group, do the members clearly know what the vision or purpose of the group is? Whether your group is primarily for online support through emails or primarily a connection for real-world activities, it needs to be stated clearly somewhere on your front page.

The key word here is “primarily.” If the members joined for the purpose of getting online ideas and support, then don’t stress about trying to get them together for activities. Maybe they aren’t coming to activities because it simply doesn’t fit their need or reason for joining your group. Assess your group’s needs and clearly communicate the group’s vision to those who are signing on with you.

#2 Take a poll of your members. Find out what your members want and how often they want it. Get as much feedback as you can through email, personal phone calls or face-to-face contact. Multiple choice polls make it much easier for them to zip back an answer to you and make it much easier for you to assess the needs of your group.

#3 If your members still need to be inspired to action, consider having a cool giveaway every once in awhile to offer them some incentive. For example, the first 25 to respond to such and such will have their names entered into a drawing for two passes to the museum. Make the giveaway something affordable, and have fun being creative with your reward if your budget isn’t very big.

Hope this helps!
Denise & Kristen

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Tuesday's Tip!

We are so excited to introduce 2 new features here on our blog for you--Tuesday's Tip and Friday's Answer. We think they will be a tremendous help to you as a homeschool group leader.

On Tuesdays, we will post a quick tip that will give you a suggestion, a reminder, or an idea that will spark your leadership imagination. They will be short and fun and cover a variety of great homeschool leader subjects.

On Fridays, we want to give away some great answers to the many great questions that you have sent us. Everyone will want to keep up with these--because your question could be answered that week, another leader just may ask something you want to know as well, and you could be a help to other leaders by posting your quick comments of what has or hasn't worked for you.

These 2 new features will give you just a taste of what's coming up soon in our new e-book for homeschool group leaders, Motivating Your Members. You're going to love it.

Here's the Tuesday's Tip for you today:
Do a service project: Bless your local firemen with a gift basket of goodies and deliver it to the station. Remember your camera!

Stay tuned for Friday's Answer,
Denise & Kristen