Profession of Volunteer Management

October 1998

The Limits of the "V" Word

By Sarah Jane Rehnborg

Guest writer Sarah Jane Rehnborg wonders if we sell ourselves short by not clarifying our language and by lumping all manners and forms of service within one broad and reasonably useless classification of "volunteer."

September 1998

Reinventing Conferences

By Susan J. Ellis

Susan admits to dissatisfaction at the repetitive format of professional conferences that have a "sameness" that is increasingly feeling dull. What other options are there for producing great learning events? 

July 1998

Let's Commit to International Exchange

By Susan J. Ellis

Leaders of volunteers around the globe are making conscious efforts to connect with one another and we need to foster such communication more actively. Looking ahead to the UN's International Year of Volunteers 2001, we can take advantage of this pending event to create exchanges among the leaders of volunteer efforts -- beyond IYV. [This Hot Topic remained active through August 1998 to permit more responses from global colleagues.]  

March 1998

Some Nagging Questions...

By Susan J. Ellis

We say we value professional networking, so why does it seem to be so hard to get leaders of volunteers to connect? Susan poses some nagging questions -- what do YOU think?

January 1998

Let's All Resolve...

By Susan J. Ellis

Susan proposes twelve professional New Year's resolutions. If once a month we each take some action on these small but vital things, the field of volunteerism will be strengthened over the next twelve months.

September 1997

What's Gender Got to Do with It?

By Susan J. Ellis

The sex-typing of volunteering as feminine--and the disproportionate number of women in director of volunteer positions--needs to be acknowledged and addressed. This is a complex issue and manifests itself in numerous ways. It's impossible for me to fully address it in this column, however I can certainly introduce questions to begin the dialogue.


Susan responds to colleague Sarah Elliston's observation that, "...volunteers are like the third branch of the organization and should be considered as such. I wonder if we are doing a disservice to be suggesting they are like paid staff."

June 1997

Why Is It Labor Unions vs. Volunteers?

By Susan J. Ellis

This month's Hot Topic is often discussed in whispers and in private, and rarely confronted openly: labor union resistance to volunteer involvement. It's time to examine this, even at the risk of controversy and strong feelings.

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