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To Lead Is To Serve: How to Attract Volunteers & Keep Them Paperback – July 1, 2002


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To Lead Is To Serve: How to Attract Volunteers & Keep Them + 365 Ideas for Recruiting, Retaining, Motivating and Rewarding Your Volunteers: A Complete Guide for Non-Profit Organizations
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 228 pages
  • Publisher: SMB Publishing, Inc.; 2 Rev Upd edition (July 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0963856022
  • ISBN-13: 978-0963856029
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.7 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #431,235 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

To Lead Is To Serve is "must" reading for any group leader who has heard or felt the refrain -- "When I first became a volunteer, it was so exciting, so rewarding. Then it became work. " The initial task is the recruitment of volunteers, but the next, and in many ways much more difficult task, is to retain the volunteers once they are recruited, to rekindle the original enthusiasm among the volunteers under the wearing and wearying pressures of day to day routines. Shar McBee's To Lead Is To Serve covers a whole gamut of good advice and practical ideas, emphasizing the leadership elements of listening, appreciation, sacrifice, the need for inspiring and informative meetings, the role of fun, creativity, team development, the necessity of "letting go", the role of expert advice, and the unique problems inherent in reaching goals. This slender paperback is packed with leadership ideas, tips, and techniques, things to consider and things to watch out for. To Lead Is To Serve is every volunteer coordinator and program director's bible. --Midwest Book Review

I oversee 1100 volunteers at 3 hospitals, a 1000 member auxiliary and 4 retail stores. I have never seen a more effective method of working with people. -- Nancy Shafer, Past President of the Junior League, Des Moines, Iowa

Our membership quickly increased from 80 to over 300 because of TO LEAD IS TO SERVE. -- Dr. Eugene Callendar, St. James Presbyterian Church, New York City

As the Executive Director of the American Heart Association, this book helped me relate to audiences in a whole new way. -- Sally Fenton, Orange County, California --Back Cover

From the Publisher

Organizations have increased their volunteers 500% and tripled attendance using this book. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Shar McBee works with nonprofits that want to double donations, triple members and increase volunteers 500%. Shar's story: She had never received leadership training when she was put in charge of supervising 500 people. It was hard until a wise mentor taught her a secret that made it easy to get people to say YES. In her books and as a motivational speaker she shares the secret with her audiences.

As a volunteer, Shar dug wells in India, organized a concert for homeless children in Australia, raised money for an orphanage in China and organized the largest voter registration drive in California history.

Shar is currently working in the city where she grew up: Los Angeles. She has lived in Honolulu, Austin, Texas, India, New York and now on the Chesapeake Bay in St. Michaels, Maryland. Shar speaks at Leadership for Women conferences and at conferences for Non-Profit organizations. Shar received the highest evaluations the Junior League had ever given a keynote speaker, and recently a business owner in Rio de Janeiro brought Shar to speak in Brazil saying, "Because of Shar's speech, I tripled my customers."

Customer Reviews

The information in this book has been useful again and again.
Marla Crowley
Thank you Shar McBee for this powerful, easy to read, and precious message of leading by serving.
Kevin W. McCarthy
The practical, timeless leadership wisdom contained within it's pages really does work!
Garrick C Colwell

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 8, 1998
Format: Paperback
"To Lead Is To Serve: How To Attract Volunteers & Keep Them," is well written, moving logically from one point to the next as it lays out a number of practical keys to leadership in a volunteer organization and to attracting and keeping volunteers. Its counsel applies, however, to leadership in other than volunteer organizations and to leadership in general. A good book on leadership from an author who began a complete novice but now has and writes from extensive successful experience in leading volunteer organizations of various types. The principles listed can be put to practical use immediately.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Rebecca Henderson on June 23, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I remember very well the first time I read "To Lead is To Serve." I was on my way to a meeting that Shar McBee was going to keynote. I wanted to introduce myself to her philosophy of volunteerism prior to the meeting. Since then, I've re-read the book several times, and each time I get more and more out of it. The writing is fresh but timeless, new and invigorating. It's book that's so good you can tune everything else out when you're reading it. "To Lead is To Serve" is also a quick, easy read - you can read it in just a couple of hours.
The principles that Ms. McBee espouses in "To Lead is To Serve" can absolutely turn an organization - any organization, be it for-profit or a non-profit, around. Unlike many who write about non-profits, the author skillfully differentiates between management and leadership. The heart of the book is the recruitment and retention of volunteers. Membership-based organzations will find great benefit in using Ms. McBee's ideas to not only recruit members, but to also retain those members. Drawing upon her extensive background as both an employee of and volunteer for non-profits, the author sparks different, exciting and creative ideas for serving others. Truly, to lead is to serve. This book tells how; a real bonus is that many of the ideas can be implemented immediatly and individually. Whatever your position in a for-profit or a non-profit, I enthusiastically recommend that you read this book and then apply its life-changing and organization-changing principles and ideas.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Lisa Shea HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on October 18, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In To Lead is To Serve, Shar McBee talks about the challenges and skills necessary to manage and maintain a volunteer group. I would even go further than that. Since most employees can choose to quit and move on at any time, I feel these same skills are important for ANY people you work with - whether they are paid or not. Every person wants to feel important, wants to feel appreciated. What Shar lists here can work in any type of group situation.

Shar talks about how maintaining a healthy view of the situation is critical. An example she gives is of finding a group of drowning people. You would not sit down and start discussing with them the basics of swimming. Instead, you would throw them a life raft. If people have an immediate need, you meet it. Only when they are ready to learn can you start providing instruction. Before the workers can accomplish anything, basic needs have to be met.

An important message Shar reiterates several times is based on iChing - "to rule truly is to serve". You cannot go around thinking "what can I get out of my volunteers / workers". Rather, you need to think about "the workers need something - what is it? How can I help?" In another example she talks about how you need to meet people where they are, and help them from there. If someone doesn't know a certain skill, it does no good to berate them for the lack or to complain about it. Instead, realize that starting point, teach them the skill, and go from there.

A key reason most volunteers stay is that they get continuous and immediate recognition and appreciation. They like to know that what they are doing is being seen. Everybody likes to be included and welcomed.

Shar offers a variety of helpful tips.
Read more ›
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Stephanie on February 4, 2013
Format: Paperback
I have used this book in every church I've served with excellent results! Shar approaches service with joy and teaches with humor and humility. She explains in the forward, "This book is for people with big hearts and high hopes who want to give of themselves to the world." In my experience, this work does just that - it helps us to give more of ourselves to the world, while supporting others to do the same. We are currently using it to facilitate a year-long book study, inviting our community's leaders to attend monthly. They receive multiple benefits - Shar's great work, my coaching, and support from one another as they share the joys and challenges of working with volunteer teams. I highly recommend this book to anyone who works with, and depends on, enthusiastic and skilled volunteers!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Thiago Fraga on February 28, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I am the owner of the second largest cultural institute with focus in Photography in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. We use Shar McBee's book to manage our employees and attract new customers. It is written for volunteers, but it works beautifully for business too. Thiago Fraga, Planning and Project Director, Instituto Kreatori.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Erica McBride on May 24, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book out of the dozens and dozens of volunteerism books I've purchased and read this might be the worst. The author spends the better part of every page bragging about her program and book. Its wasteful and boring. Furthermore she brings Jesus into it, claiming that Jesus followed all of the To Lead is to Serve principles. The way the author brags you might think that Jesus himself had read her book prior to becoming a Messiah. Once I got past her incessant bragging she proceeded to go over several prejudiced and racist beliefs about how minority races never volunteer because of cultural reasons. Awful. The Worst. Do not buy.
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