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Work Ministry assists faith-based and community organizations in developing Job Support groups serving job seekers and connecting groups with Employers. Work Ministry:
The roles of a Ministry Leader are recruiter, advertiser, facilitator, and even at times, a trainer for new participants in the Work Ministry. Effectively, the Ministry Leader is the "go-to" person for the sponsoring Church and the members of the Ministry.
The responsibilities of a Ministry Leader are to coordinate and facilitate the group. The Leader sets up the meeting, plans the topics of discussions, conducts the meetings, and keeps meeting discussion moving according to agenda schedule.
The Leader should communicate to the Work Ministry group when and where meetings will be held. This can usually be done through the Church weekly bulletin.
The Leader should maintain a list of Work Ministry participants to track attendance and to also note who "landed", in other words, got a job! Information contained in this sheet should include: networkers name, contact information, e-mail address, home and cell phone numbers, targeted job, etc. and date and company of landing.
To form a Job Support group, the Leader needs to ask a few participants if they would volunteer their time to help support the Ministry group. One option that has been very effective is to include employed people as support team members. The size of the group will dictate the number of volunteers you will really need. For instance, a group of 50 participants may need 5 volunteers. (Usually a 10-1 ratio)
The responsibilities of the volunteers would be to set-up the room, greet the attendees, conduct a "sign-in" process, and make them feel welcome. Further, volunteers usually assist speakers with setup or passing out information sheets. After the meeting, room facilities need to be restored to original conditions for use.
A Job Support group should meet at least twice a month. It is suggested that meetings not exceed 2 hours. (This is especially true if the meetings are held during the week at night, for example, 7 to 9:00 PM. People are tired from the day and will be less productive!)
Structuring the meeting keeps the level of interest high with the Job Support members. There are three basic types of meeting formats:
The meeting structure is:
There are two options for networking sessions. A breakout session of 5-10 people can form a group and exchange their elevator speeches. Or a general session of all attendees can conduct a networking session. An elevator speech should not exceed two minutes.
During the networking session, the group tries to help each candidate with suggested companies, contact information and perhaps some insights on a specific target company. In each case, participants try to give helpful information to the job seeker.
If the breakout group option is used, once each person's presentation is completed, new groups can be formed to continue the process of exchanging information and ideas with new contacts.
There is no limit to how many people can attend a Job Support (networking) meeting. This meeting should be open to everyone who wants to participate in job-finding skills and preparation.
Topics that should be discussed in a Job Support meeting are introductions to the job networking process, networking opportunities, the job market, use of the Internet for locating jobs, job fairs, resume and cover letter writing, appropriate dress for an interview, and types of questions that you will be asked during an interview.
The types of guest speakers for a meeting can be Recruiters, Career Counselors, Outplacement counselors, staff from State Department of Employment Security, Motivational Speakers or anyone with interest or knowledge in job placement.
An agenda with information should be passed out to those who attend this meeting. The agenda should include date, topic of discussion, who the presenter is and the time that is allotted for the speaker. In addition, if a presentation is done, each member should receive a copy of what is being presented and any or all other information that is pertinent to the topic.
Leaders and other support team members do not have to be experts in all aspects of career management. The group will find solutions and make recommendations to job seekers. The Work Ministry website has materials to address many of the issues of career management and should be utilized.
The Job Support meeting is about the participants. To the extent possible, meeting minutes should be their time for talk about their job searches. If a speaker or topic of discussion is not on the agenda, the time devoted to the job seekers should be about 60-70% of the total meeting time. Leaders do not have the burden of filling the time with talk about job search- that's what the participants came to the meeting to do themselves. When in doubt about meeting content, let the participants talk about their issues.
Always close your networking meeting on a positive note as well as something motivational to think about. Thank everyone for coming. Express to everyone "good job hunting this week." By closing on a positive note, you leave a lasting impression on those who attended.
All information is copyrighted by Work Ministry or resources noted. Printing of any information is permitted, but documents may not be altered or used for commercial purposes.