Have you ever dealt with a 2-year-old toddler?
When you deal with a 2-year-old toddler that begins to challenge your parenting and decides to always do the exact opposite of what you say, that is when your patience starts to thin. As does mine.
When I lose my patience with my 2-year old daughter, it is really easy for me to fly off the handle and give her a consequence that she may not deserve out of nowhere. I have found that to be very counter-productive way to parent.
In fact, just yesterday, my daughter was in one of those moods. She was a bit whiny, a bit hungry, and a bit, well, let’s just say, she was being ultra-challenging. I was almost out of patience.
I was getting her ready for her bath when I told her to come to me. She ran away!
Here’s what I wanted to do: run after her, pick her up, and say in a very loud voice, “You need to listen to me! No more food for a week!”
Clearly, that is a terrible consequence for the situation.
Instead, here’s what I did say in a calm voice. “This is your warning. You have 5 seconds to come to me or there will be no story tonight before bed. 5, 4, 3, 2, 1.” She decided not to come to me. I picked her up and told her she lost her story privilege tonight, which is quite appropriate because she loves story time.
Ok, the point. Sometimes, when you have a volunteer that is not meeting your expectations, it would be really easy to become impatient and fire them from the ministry. Certainly, there are appropriate times to do that.
However, just like with my daughter, it would be really unfair to punish a volunteer without given them a warning that their behavior is inappropriate. Everyone, whether a 2-year-old toddler or a 32-year-old volunteer, deserves a chance to make things right (unless it is a major issue!)
The Warning: that is the one thing that every volunteer needs to hear before they are removed from your ministry.
When a volunteer is not meeting your expectations for the ministry, it is important that you sit down with them and clearly lay out what expectations are not being met. Sometimes, your volunteer does not even know that they are not meeting your expectations. This allows them to change their behavior.
Bottom line: every volunteer deserves The Warning before you remove him or her from your ministry.
Question: Is there someone you need to give The Warning to in your ministry?
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