Guest post by Lori Jean Mantooth, Points of Light
Interested in presenting your ideas about volunteerism at a fun, informative gathering of people who care about the world? Here’s some advice from Lori Jean Mantooth, Points of Light’s director of training programs:
Many of us have been there. We’ve pored over the list of workshops at a conference, reading descriptions and speaker bios in an attempt to decide which sessions to attend. I mean, if you’re going to dedicate 90 minutes to a workshop, you want to make sure it’s worth your time, right?
Or maybe you’ve been on the other side. You’ve spent hours developing a workshop proposal, hoping it would be accepted and then working hard to make sure the session lived up to your original vision.
Each year around this time, my colleagues and I get to figure out how to bring these two perspectives into one beautiful experience at the annual Conference on Volunteering and Service. We’ve just opened the Call for Presenters for 2014.
It’s an exciting time for us. We get to read about the great work that’s happening in communities around the globe. We receive proposals from nonprofits, government agencies, companies and individuals (both seasoned experts and first-timers) who can inspire and teach us all.
To help people develop strong proposals, we’ve recently hosted a webinar on the topic. Check out the recording here.
Last year we published an eVOLve issue about developing workshop proposals for any conference. Here is an updated look at those tips, tailored for the Conference on Volunteering and Service:
As you develop your proposal, ask colleagues to help you talk through ideas and read the proposal to ensure you’re sharing the right information in the best possible way. It may take a couple of rewrites, but the effort will be worth it. Don’t be discouraged if your proposal isn’t accepted this year. Ask the reviewers for feedback to help you improve for next time. And good luck!