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Thoughts on Motivating Volunteers

Getting people to volunteer is one thing. Motivating them is another ...

Robert E. Cook is executive vice president of the Illinois Association of Realtors. He's responsible for matters affecting the fifty-seven real estate boards in Illinois and their 33,000 members.

Bob is also an active church layman and past chairman of the governor's Prayer Breakfast Committee in Illinois. He has also served as president of the Wheaton College Alumni Association.

Much of Bob's success with the Illinois Association of Realtors depends on work done by volunteers who serve on committees. Following are some lessons he has learned about working with volunteers.

There's a difference between manipulation and motivation. Although the best real estate agents don't manipulate people, some do. Manipulation means you're inducing people to act on insufficient evidence; you're getting them to buy mink coats they can't afford and eat chocolate mousse they don't need. On the other hand, motivation means you're suggesting people buy houses they can afford and that fit their needs, or, in ...

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