97 episodes

Nonprofit leadership author, coach, and expert Tobi Johnson shares weekly tips to help charities build, grow, and scale exceptional volunteer teams. Discover how your nonprofit can effectively coordinate volunteers who are reliable, equipped, and ready to help you bring about BIG change for the better. Rather than continuing to “do more with less,” achieve abundance for your organization by engaging community talent that helps you do more with more. Society is evolving and so, too, is volunteerism. With over 25 years of experience working in nonprofits, public sector agencies, and grassroots campaigns Tobi is known for her modern “big hat” thinking and straight talk about what it takes to achieve success in today’s world. You will learn how to coordinate volunteers, improve the volunteer experience, recruit volunteers, appreciate volunteers, and do it all more efficiently with the right volunteer management software and digital tools. It’s a mix of interviews and solo shows you’re not going to want to miss. So, if you’re ready to ditch the stress and harness the power of people to fuel your good work, you’re in exactly the right place. Hit subscribe and let’s DO this!

Volunteer Nation Tobi Johnson, MA, CVA

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 14 Ratings

Nonprofit leadership author, coach, and expert Tobi Johnson shares weekly tips to help charities build, grow, and scale exceptional volunteer teams. Discover how your nonprofit can effectively coordinate volunteers who are reliable, equipped, and ready to help you bring about BIG change for the better. Rather than continuing to “do more with less,” achieve abundance for your organization by engaging community talent that helps you do more with more. Society is evolving and so, too, is volunteerism. With over 25 years of experience working in nonprofits, public sector agencies, and grassroots campaigns Tobi is known for her modern “big hat” thinking and straight talk about what it takes to achieve success in today’s world. You will learn how to coordinate volunteers, improve the volunteer experience, recruit volunteers, appreciate volunteers, and do it all more efficiently with the right volunteer management software and digital tools. It’s a mix of interviews and solo shows you’re not going to want to miss. So, if you’re ready to ditch the stress and harness the power of people to fuel your good work, you’re in exactly the right place. Hit subscribe and let’s DO this!

    97. Transforming How We Lead Volunteers with Martin J Cowling

    97. Transforming How We Lead Volunteers with Martin J Cowling

    In this episode of the Volunteer Nation podcast, host Tobi interviews global change management expert Martin J. Cowling. They discuss the transformative shifts happening in volunteer management, and the need for 21st-century organizations to rethink their approach to volunteers.  
    Martin shares his insights on how organizations can better leverage their volunteer talent by selling the impact of volunteering, reconstructing roles for wider engagement, maximizing flexibility, and embracing diversity. He highlights the importance of measuring the impact of volunteering on the individual, the organization, and the community, and calls for a change in the language and outreach methods used to engage potential volunteers. It's an extremely insightful conversation, tune in now!
    Full show notes: 97. Transforming How We Lead Volunteers with Martin J Cowling
    Thanks for listening to this episode of the Volunteer Nation podcast. If you enjoyed it, please be sure to subscribe, rate, and review so we can reach more people like you who want to improve the impact of their good cause.
    For more tips and notes from the show, check us out at TobiJohnson.com. For any comments or questions, email us at WeCare@VolPro.net.

    • 59 min
    96. Volunteer Work or Staff Position? How to Decide!

    96. Volunteer Work or Staff Position? How to Decide!

    In this episode, Tobi discusses how organizations can decide whether a role should be a volunteer, or paid position. She discusses the key differences between volunteer work and paid roles in areas such as legal definitions, pay structures, motivations, behavior, roles, expertise and identity. 
    Tobi also emphasizes that the decision must be strategic and respectful to the volunteers, and how roles involving high-risk scenarios or handling of sensitive information may be better suited for paid staff, than volunteers. Tune in to find out how you can ensure you make the right decision when it comes to determining roles within your organization! 
    Full show notes: 96. Volunteer Work or Staff Position? How to Decide!
    Thanks for listening to this episode of the Volunteer Nation podcast. If you enjoyed it, please be sure to subscribe, rate, and review so we can reach more people like you who want to improve the impact of their good cause.
    For more tips and notes from the show, check us out at TobiJohnson.com. For any comments or questions, email us at WeCare@VolPro.net.

    • 37 min
    95. 6 Ways to Immediately Boost Volunteer Signups

    95. 6 Ways to Immediately Boost Volunteer Signups

    In this episode of the podcast, Tobi shares six tactical strategies to boost volunteer signups. These strategies involve diagnosing what's currently working and what's not, increasing the number of personal asks, tracking and radically decreasing response time.  
    Tobi also delves into paid advertising and public service announcements to garner attention, utilizing website pop-ups and banners, and making presentations in places frequented by potential volunteers. Listen to the full episode to find out how you can immediately boost volunteer signups and how to use your volunteer persona to understand your ideal volunteer profile!
    Full show notes: 95. 6 Ways to Immediately Boost Volunteer Signups
    Thanks for listening to this episode of the Volunteer Nation podcast. If you enjoyed it, please be sure to subscribe, rate, and review so we can reach more people like you who want to improve the impact of their good cause.
    For more tips and notes from the show, check us out at TobiJohnson.com. For any comments or questions, email us at WeCare@VolPro.net.

    • 26 min
    94. How to Make the Shift from Doer to Nonprofit Leader with Patricia Gentry

    94. How to Make the Shift from Doer to Nonprofit Leader with Patricia Gentry

    In this episode, Tobi is joined by Patricia Gentry, who is the strategy advisor at VolunteerPro. They discuss the importance of moving from in-program work to strategic planning, focusing on the wider vision, the need to shift mindsets, and why building relationships, creating accountability, and cultivating self-reflection are key for leadership.
    Tobi and Patricia also debate the pitfalls of imposter syndrome, rescuer mentality and why we should be celebrating our wins more often. The discussion wraps up on the topic of shifting from digital 1.0. to digital 2.0 and why embracing emerging trends and honing leadership skills plays a significant role in successful nonprofit management. Tune in to find out how you can make the shift from doer to nonprofit leader! 
    Full show notes: 94. How to Make the Shift from Doer to Nonprofit Leader with Patricia Gentry 
    Thanks for listening to this episode of the Volunteer Nation podcast. If you enjoyed it, please be sure to subscribe, rate, and review so we can reach more people like you who want to improve the impact of their good cause.
    For more tips and notes from the show, check us out at TobiJohnson.com. For any comments or questions, email us at WeCare@VolPro.net.

    • 1 hr 6 min
    93. The 5 Phases of Successful Volunteer Coordination

    93. The 5 Phases of Successful Volunteer Coordination

    In this episode, host Tobi examines the mode of operating a successful volunteer initiative. Highlighting the struggle to rebuild volunteer strength amid the pandemic, Tobi elaborates on the five phases that Volunteer Pro teaches: Envisioning the Future, Building the Foundation, Growing Engagement, Sustaining Involvement, and Scaling Leadership.
    Tobi explains these strategies in detail, stressing the importance of a comprehensive volunteer strategy that involves not just paperwork but people too. She emphasizes the centrality of having a system to ensure clarity and standardization. Tune in to find out what the 5 phases are and how you can implement them!
    Full show notes: 93. The 5 Phases of Successful Volunteer Coordination
    Thanks for listening to this episode of the Volunteer Nation podcast. If you enjoyed it, please be sure to subscribe, rate, and review so we can reach more people like you who want to improve the impact of their good cause.
    For more tips and notes from the show, check us out at TobiJohnson.com. For any comments or questions, email us at WeCare@VolPro.net.

    • 29 min
    92. How to Mobilize Volunteers by the Thousands with Dr. Chris Lambert

    92. How to Mobilize Volunteers by the Thousands with Dr. Chris Lambert

    In this episode, host Tobi is joined by special guest Dr. Chris Lambert, CEO of Life Remodeled. Together, they dive into the transformative power of volunteerism, by working with communities, not for communities. They explore the grassroots to grass tops approach, sharing power, and educating volunteers about systemic root causes of community challenges.
    The episode delves into the approaches of Life Remodeled to engage of thousands of volunteers in meaningful, sustainable ways through their six-day community revitalization project and beyond. Chris also shares insights from his book, "Next Level Nonprofit," and the principles it outlines for nonprofit excellence. Tune in for a thought-provoking and insightful discussion on mobilizing volunteers and building bridges across divides.


    Full show notes: 92. How to Mobilize Volunteers by the Thousands with Dr. Chris Lambert 


    Thanks for listening to this episode of the Volunteer Nation podcast. If you enjoyed it, please be sure to subscribe, rate, and review so we can reach more people like you who want to improve the impact of their good cause.
    For more tips and notes from the show, check us out at TobiJohnson.com. For any comments or questions, email us at WeCare@VolPro.net.

    • 47 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
14 Ratings

14 Ratings

Swim Karim's twin Skip Karim ,

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ghuff09808 ,

Thank you for putting this out there!

I like what I’ve heard so far! I am a director of volunteering with an RSVP program in Wisconsin. I love the social science behind volunteering and often feel I am alone in that. Nice to hear from fellow nerds trying to understand how to make the field better. Thanks for putting this out there

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