Update note: I'm reminding people of this article along with material on how to recognize your church communicators around Valentines' Day because good communication with volunteers is essential all year round. PLEASE especially take note of the advice here to communicate with people according to THEIR preferred communication channel. People are very picky about this today. Some will only talk on the phone; some never answer the phone and you must send them a text; some hate texting, but constantly check email. It is a huge challenge (and a lot of work) for anyone trying to reach all their volunteers, but it is essential work that needs to be done if we are to serve those we work with.
Back to the article on communicating with volunteers
Every church is desperate for volunteers. It's not only important to effectively recruit them, but after they are recruited, it is equally important to work hard to keep them. Unfortunately, the difference between how we treat volunteers when we are recruiting them and after they volunteer is sometimes similar to the difference with some couples between courtship and marriage.
Before the wedding the groom is all flowers and candy; after the wedding, he becomes Mr. Grumpy.
Don’t become Mr. or Mrs. Grumpy to your volunteers. Be as kind, caring, and thankful to them when they have been around for 6 months as you are the first week. Not only is this the proper response for a disciple of Jesus, but volunteers can easily quit if you make it difficult or unpleasant to serve. You can express that thankfulness to them through a variety of church communication projects such as:
Reminders of meetings or volunteer responsibilities
You may be reluctant to do this thinking that you are unnecessarily bothering people, but we need to remember that unlike many of us, the lives of most of our volunteers do not revolve around the church. People may volunteer with the best of intentions, but if they did not write down all the details after signing up in the church lobby or online to do something, it's easy to forget all about it.