Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Lesson learned re: volunteering
Old 01-18-2015, 06:39 PM   #1
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Lisa99's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: The Villages
Posts: 1,326
Lesson learned re: volunteering

Back in November I was talked into being the secretary for our chartered pickleball club. 2 months in I SO wish I could take back my agreeing to do it.

It's a game so you'd think people's main motivation would be to play and have fun. Naive huh?

Every time I'm on the courts to play I get barraged with people complaining about one thing or another. I've just about had enough but I won't quit. But come November elections I'm running the other way fast as I can.

Glad to have learned this lesson before I retire but I can safely say I will never again serve on a board of any kind.
__________________

__________________
Learning how to be still, to really be still and let life happen - that stillness becomes a radiance -
Morgan Freeman
Lisa99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 01-18-2015, 07:05 PM   #2
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Mulligan's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 7,369
You must be a sweet person Lisa... I know how people are. It's funny when you are direct and say "If you think you can do a better job, I will give it to you right now. And if you don't shut the hole under your nose because I don't want to hear it." Nice people don't say that, but I do...and the complaints stop!


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
__________________

__________________
Mulligan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2015, 08:22 PM   #3
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Lisa99's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: The Villages
Posts: 1,326
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mulligan View Post
You must be a sweet person Lisa... I know how people are. It's funny when you are direct and say "If you think you can do a better job, I will give it to you right now. And if you don't shut the hole under your nose because I don't want to hear it." Nice people don't say that, but I do...and the complaints stop! .
wow, maybe I should try that! 😄
__________________
Learning how to be still, to really be still and let life happen - that stillness becomes a radiance -
Morgan Freeman
Lisa99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2015, 09:49 PM   #4
Moderator
MBAustin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 4,148
Lisa - maybe that just wasn't the right board for you. There are a lot of nonprofit organizations that need good leadership so don't throw the baby out with the bath water.


Sent from my iPad using Early Retirement Forum
__________________
"One of the funny things about the stock market is that every time one person buys, another sells, and both think they are astute." William Feather
----------------------------------
ER'd Oct. 2010 at 53. Life is good.
MBAustin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2015, 09:58 PM   #5
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 1,648
Game = Competition = Complaining!
That said, Good of you to volunteer for this Lisa but perhaps not quite what you envisioned. There are, as MBAustin said..perhaps other places to volunteer that would be more rewarding! Good Luck!
__________________
sheehs1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2015, 10:00 PM   #6
Moderator Emeritus
Bestwifeever's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 16,372
No organization too small or unimportant (not disparaging the pickleball club, but what's the worst thing that could happen if the club is not well "boarded") that some members can't find something to bitch or moan about.

If you like the position and the involvement as secretary, just ignore the bitching and moaning, Lisa--don't let them drag you down.
__________________
“Would you like an adventure now, or would you like to have your tea first?” J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan
Bestwifeever is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2015, 10:18 PM   #7
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Chicago area
Posts: 427
I agree with Mulligan. Volunteering is a lot different from a j*b. In a j*b one is paid good money to do one's best work and to diligently try to address everyone's complaints, pet peeves, etc.

In volunteering one has to assert one's personal boundaries or else risk getting trampled and abused.

Sent from my SM-T237P using Early Retirement Forum mobile app
__________________
AnIntentionalRoad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2015, 10:44 PM   #8
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Lisa99's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: The Villages
Posts: 1,326
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnIntentionalRoad View Post
In volunteering one has to assert one's personal boundaries or else risk getting trampled and abused.
I like that comment... personal boundaries.

I'm used to the corporate world where I have a job and am paid well for it. I've been treating this volunteer position too much like a job. I'm done with doing that.
__________________
Lisa99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2015, 12:21 PM   #9
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Gotadimple's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 1,760
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisa99 View Post
wow, maybe I should try that! 😄
Lisa,
I have been a director on a social club for 5 years, all involved with Communications to members and prospective members. I occasionally get remarks from members about the content of a newsletter, or the quality of a newsletter. My response is similar, "You have good ideas, you should run for this position at the Annual Meeting. Let (the president) know you're interested." Usually, I never hear from that person again.

-- Rita
BTW, I am not running for re-election -- 5 years is long enough.
__________________
Only got A dimple, would have preferred 2!
Gotadimple is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2015, 01:03 PM   #10
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
heeyy_joe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Madeira Beach Fl
Posts: 1,403
Your first clue should have been the word pickle.
__________________
_______________________________________________
"A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and goes to bed at night and in between does what he wants to do" --Bob Dylan.
heeyy_joe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2015, 01:37 PM   #11
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
haha's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Hooverville
Posts: 22,380
I am a board member of my condo association.

Complaints are rare, but there are "situations" that we really don't have the power to address. I would resign tomorrow, but I want to keep my eye on how the building is managed and maintained.

If I lived in a cheaper city, I would not have bought a condo but rather a ~10 unit apartment building that I would manage, or if I had had the money, perhaps an apartment in a very high quality building with full time professional management. But if your funds are limited, you make compromises.

My situation is not bad. If I were still renting it would now be getting pretty rich for me in my neighborhood. With interest rates that I can get of 1% or so, and annual rent increases of 6-9%, buying outright which is what I did gives a lot of room between my cost to own, and what I am giving up in money not invested. Also, for a retired person who is around a lot at various hours of the day, many apartments and condos will not be suitable. A common problem is they are too dark. Dark apartments or homes suck! So if you find what you like, and can afford it, it might be best to buy.

But I would never be on a board if I did not have a personal stake in outcomes. When my sons were still at home, I served on boards of organizations that were important in their lives, and I never regretted it.

Ha
__________________
"As a general rule, the more dangerous or inappropriate a conversation, the more interesting it is."-Scott Adams
haha is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2015, 02:09 PM   #12
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
travelover's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 9,874
I volunteered for awhile after I retired, but quickly realized that it (for me) was just an unpaid job. I told them that I didn't quit working because I was tired of people giving me money.

Now I just volunteer to do things I that really like and refuse to do anything I don't want to do.
__________________
Yes, I have achieved work / life balance.
travelover is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2015, 02:13 PM   #13
Recycles dryer sheets
jetpack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 317
Yeah, I did a few years volunteering during my soft retirement. It only got worse over the years as it slowly became a bigger percentage of my scheduled w*rk time. Yeah, it became work. By the time I left, I was the most experienced and important one there. It's quiet a load off now, and now I truly feel retired.
__________________
jetpack is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2015, 04:41 PM   #14
Full time employment: Posting here.
Tailgate's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Texas
Posts: 880
my strategy is to join everything and do nothing
__________________
Tailgate is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2015, 04:54 PM   #15
Moderator
Walt34's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Eastern WV Panhandle
Posts: 16,501
I was on the board three years and president one year for a radio control model airplane club with ~200-250 members - it varied year to year. That's when I found out that 90% of the work gets done by 10% of the membership.

For the most part it was okay with not much complaining. When there was I was in Mulligan's camp and the complaining stopped.
__________________
I heard the call to do nothing. So I answered it.
Walt34 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2015, 05:05 PM   #16
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 257
My DH who has never been a quitter in his life, has been volunteering many many hours a month in our community since he retired. One of his 'jobs' is as editor of the monthly neighborhood newsletter. He included an article this month from a neighbor who asked for the neighborhood association to be more open and inclusive (a very common complaint in these parts).

Now the NA (it's not an HOA) want to oversee or limit what types of articles he publishes.

I told him, "Honey, if it's not fun any more, don't do it." Seems like he's going to resign from this position shortly. He's 72 years old. Life's too short for this nonsense.




Sent from my iPhone using Early Retirement Forum
__________________
iac1003 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2015, 05:21 PM   #17
Recycles dryer sheets
Theseus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 484
Quote:
Originally Posted by Walt34 View Post
I was on the board three years and president one year for a radio control model airplane club with ~200-250 members - it varied year to year. That's when I found out that 90% of the work gets done by 10% of the membership.
Absolutely true statement. Being a relative newcomer to a similar-sized car club, I volunteered to be the newsletter editor. That was over 5 years ago, sometimes I wish someone would complain so I could use the "if you think you could improve on it, why don't you volunteer..." line - but instead they keep telling me I'm doing a fantastic job.
__________________
Theseus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2015, 08:42 AM   #18
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 392
My husband has had similar complaints. Some volunteer positions are as annoying as jobs. He just does Meals on Wheels now.
__________________
BellBarbara is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2015, 09:00 AM   #19
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
2B's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Houston
Posts: 4,330
Quote:
Originally Posted by travelover View Post
I volunteered for awhile after I retired, but quickly realized that it (for me) was just an unpaid job. I told them that I didn't quit working because I was tired of people giving me money.

Now I just volunteer to do things I that really like and refuse to do anything I don't want to do.
I love your comment. With my retirement date quickly approaching seeming like it will take forever to get here, DW has been coming up with all the wonderful volunteer activities for me to get involved with. I've told her to let me plan my own life. When I ask her why she doesn't volunteer, she's too busy.
__________________
The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane -- Marcus Aurelius
2B is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2015, 09:12 AM   #20
Recycles dryer sheets
Beldar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 346
Quote:
Originally Posted by iac1003 View Post
if it's not fun any more, don't do it
+1
I volunteered at a small military museum for over 5 yrs, because I found the particular subject matter very interesting & relevant to my previous military experience. I was w*rking also, and gave up one of the 2 free weekend days I had, every weekend.

Talk about the political intrigue and backbiting! It was as vicious and sometimes even worst than my office! Near the end it became such a chore to show up and listen to "who was the smartest" and "so & so is doing it all wrong" that it no longer was FUN. I finally said Buh-Bye.

I don't think I'll ever "volunteer" again; I might join an organization I'm interested in, or donate (not my time). I've been soured on the experience.

_B
__________________

__________________
Beldar is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
A lesson learned from the death of an expat ItDontMeanAThing Health and Early Retirement 2 05-07-2014 07:26 AM
Costly Lesson Learned about Roth Conversions 45th Birthday FIRE and Money 1 04-26-2014 05:20 PM
Lesson Learned: In Favor of Limit Orders... headingout FIRE and Money 7 09-23-2008 01:26 PM
Treasury Direct Lesson learned dex FIRE and Money 6 02-28-2006 10:00 AM
The Dark Side of Volunteering arrete Other topics 2 04-30-2003 06:57 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:44 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.