The Communication Pattern

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Communicating with volunteers across an event, with constant churn of volunteers, can be tricky.


It is crucial to have good communication with volunteers: ideally a volunteer should know what to do without having to do any research. Unfortunately this is not possible, but we can do our best to minimise the efforts a volunteer should put in to get instructions. Communication with volunteers should include, but not be limited to:

  • General assembly's with everyone on the event terrain on the days prior to the event. These gatherings should outline the progress made since the last assembly and the plans for the next day. It is important that people are motivated to help out, and that it is made easy for them to figure out where hands (or brains ;) ) are needed.
  • On the last day before the official start of the even the assembly should be even more extensive. Extra efforts must be made to get as much people as possible to attend, and every teamlead should give a brief overview of what his/her team does and what (s)he needs volunteers for. This does not only give attendees an idea of the efforts needed to run a hacker event, but it also gives teamleads some recognition for their hard work. After the meeting every team should give introduction sessions to new volunteers. Make sure this gets announced during the presentations, and that potential volunteers know where to go. During or right after these sessions, it should be possible to register for shifts
  • Document -- Yes, really. Documenting is not usually a hacker's strong suit, but when working in teams like you will be doing during the organisation of an event it is *crucial*. Every team should have a proper wiki page set up, outlining the tasks of the team, and if more volunteers are needed, giving instructions on how to enroll. Again, make it as easy as possible for a volunteer to join the team. Also, make sure there is a link between the volunteering system and the wiki.
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