5 tips for creating a great volunteer culture at your TEDx event

TEDxFargo 2015 volunteers (Photo: J. Alan Paul)

TEDxFargo 2015 volunteers (Photo: J. Alan Paul)

Julie Peterson Klein is TEDxFargo’s Chief Culture Officer. For TEDxFargo 2015, Klein organized a comprehensive program for over 200 TEDxFargo volunteers, making sure that before the event they could meet, get comfortable with one another and learn the ropes of TEDx, and — after the event — celebrate their hard work.

“I believe all across the world that every single person wants to be appreciated, cared for and know that what they do is important,” Klein told TEDx, “[and] we work very hard to make sure our volunteers feel the same … To inspire the volunteers of TEDxFargo and help them to understand the impact it is making on the community was so rewarding.

How did the program work? “Volunteers were offered a training session prior to the day so they felt comfortable,” Klein says. “Following the event we coordinated a volunteer after-party to keep the momentum of the day going and left them with an opportunity to ‘Pay It Forward’ with a small gift of $20 to make a difference in someone’s life.”

A speaker at TEDxFargo (Photo: J. Alan Paul)

A speaker at TEDxFargo (Photo: J. Alan Paul)

We asked Klein what advice she would give to other TEDx events looking to create a positive volunteer culture at their event. She provided these five tips:

  1. Spread the word. There are no boundaries for those that can participate. TEDx welcomes volunteers from the business community, the arts, the schools and so much more!
  2. Over-communicate. We try to make it easy for the volunteers to come and enjoy this event.
  3. Inspire. It makes a huge difference if the volunteers are energized about the event and understand that the impact they are leaving on people’s hearts is priceless.
  4. It’s the little things that matter the most.
  5. Thank them and make it FUN!

For more advice on hosting a great TEDx event, check out these articles:

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