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Key Volunteer Guidelines

Key Volunteers are responsible for managing groups of volunteers in specific areas of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon, often in conjunction with a team of other Key Volunteers and Event Staff. Key Volunteers should feel comfortable communicating with and leading people. They should also be willing to help organize and improve their area as well as commit additional time to the event for pre-race meetings and race weekend set-up.

Be a Team Lead: Characteristics of a Key Volunteer

The acronym, TEAM LEAD, encompasses the characteristics of a model Key Volunteer. We hope this inspires you to be exemplary and makes your experience more rewarding.

TEAM – Together, we can produce far better results than we could individually.

  • Train/Teach – Clearly define goals and expectations for volunteers and ask for input to encourage team spirit.
  • Energize – Create a positive environment and encourage your volunteers to have fun.
  • Appreciate – Regularly say thank you and provide positive reinforcement.
  • Manage – Delegate, make sure volunteers always feel comfortably busy, and constantly communicate.

LEAD – Be prepared, proactive, responsible, and empower others.

  • Listen – Listen with compassion and caring and treat everyone with respect and dignity.
  • Excellence – Seek a world-class standard, strive to improve, and focus on service.
  • Adapt – Be open to and ready for change; always remain calm.
  • Discover – Find your voice while inspiring others to find theirs.

What Should I Do If…

Sometimes sticky situations arise when working with volunteers, and the appropriate course of action is not always clear. Please review the hypothetical What Should I Do If scenarios and applicable resolutions.

General Guidelines

To help make this year’s event a memorable experience for everyone, we ask that all Key Volunteers follow these four simple guidelines:

  • Please arrive on time. Your manager will confirm your check-in time and location.
  • Wear your volunteer uniform and credential at all times. Key volunteers will receive event gear/merchandise to wear during their shifts. The primary purpose of this gear is to identify you as a Key Volunteer, and certain areas may have different uniforms than others. You must wear the uniform and credential provided for the 2013 Chicago Marathon during your shifts. Any prior year or other event merchandise will not be permitted.
  • Remember that you will appear as an official volunteer of the event due to your branded uniform and important role at the event. Keep this in mind and always conduct yourself in an appropriate and respectful manner.
  • Enjoy your time as a volunteer and have fun. You are the reason that volunteers love coming back every year. We highly value your kindness, dedication and commitment to this world-class event.
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