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Getting to Know the Super-Volunteer, and Implications for Volunteer Management

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In our last issue, Research to Practice focused on episodic volunteers, as one-time or short-term volunteering is often called. This time, e-Volunteerism looks at a study of super-volunteers, defined as “individuals who volunteer 10 or more hours per week with a single organization” (Einolf & Yung, 2018, 789).

Based on in-depth interviews with 26 super-volunteers and nine volunteer managers, reviewer Laurie Mook presents the results of this research that sought to answer these four questions: (1) What characteristics and experiences of individuals cause them to become super-volunteers?; (2) What criteria do super-volunteers use in choosing an organization for which they will volunteer?; (3) What are the advantages and challenges in employing super-volunteers?; and (4) How can nonprofits best manage super-volunteers? The insights produced by this study, Mook argues, are useful for both those seeking and currently managing super-volunteers.