Almost every Sunday morning for two years I was the hapless teenager in the sound booth of my small church—doing her best to operate the 2006 version of Easy Worship on an ancient PC, botching the lyric slide order, and forgetting to start the sermon recording.

I wasn’t that bad, but I certainly wasn’t good. And yet every year I volunteered, the worship team gave me a small gift (usually with a lot of candy) and a note thanking me for my time. They knew I was doing my best and said thank you for it.

We may already be in the new year, but it’s not too late to say a thoughtful thank you to the people who got you through the last twelve months of ministry—your 2019 volunteers.

It doesn’t have to be much, just personal. The simple intentionality of saying “thank you” can go a long way in making people feel valued.

Find Your Volunteers

Between your detailed records in Services and the Lists feature in People, it shouldn’t take more than a minute or two to find everyone who served in 2019.

You can make your list as specific or generic as you want it to. Start by creating a list of everyone who served anywhere within a specific time frame, and then narrow it down with additional conditions as needed—by team, ministry department, and more!

You can make as many lists as you like, so don’t be afraid to play around with list conditions and options until you have exactly what you need.

Once you’ve dialed in your list (or lists), it’s time to add all of the people to a workflow so you can go through your thank-you process.

Follow-up Personally

The nice thing about tackling this project now rather than in December is you don’t have a Christmas deadline. There’s no obligation to include sugar cookies or have cards with reindeer on them...or something.

But it’s probably a good idea to say your thank-you’s before March 2020, so get organized by getting all of your 2019 volunteers into workflows!

Start by creating a step for everything you want to do to say thank you, even if it’s just one step—Write Thank You Notes—then start funneling people from your lists into your workflows.

A few tips to getting your team involved:

  • Delegate to your team: You don’t have to do it all. Assign workflow steps to people on staff who know the individual volunteers personally.
  • Set deadlines and reminders: Give yourself and staff a time limit to get all your thank-you’s out, and then make sure it happens by setting automatic reminders.

The most important thing is to be genuine. Lists and Workflows are a great way to stay on top of things, but they won’t help you be personal, and it is all too easy to lose sight of that.

So we hope that by having a process you can switch from task mode to connection mode as you reach out to the people who helped carry your church through the last year.