Friday, June 20, 2014

Myths About Being a Convention Volunteer

Reflecting on yesterday's post of my excitement from attending my first convention volunteer meeting (yes, I still get that excited about helping the con) I thought about some things people have told me when I talk to them about volunteering for the convention.

If I miss a meeting, I'll be removed as a volunteer.
I really don't know where this even came from.  While the more meetings that you attend, the better informed you will be..  We're all people with lives outside of the convention.  We have families, work, and other obligations.  If you miss a meeting, you will not be removed as a volunteer.  It is important to contact your department head to have them fill you in on what you might have missed.

Volunteering for a convention won't do anything for your career.
Not true.  The people that you volunteer with and meet are expanding your networks.  Not only that, these people can be professional references able to voice their opinion of what you are able to contribute. 

There's nothing useful that I can contribute.
Oh baby, don't be like that.  There are so many departments that have so many sub-departments.  All of these departments have a number of duties delegated to them that we can find something that you can do.

I signed up for one department and think that I would be better in another but now I'm stuck in this department forever.
Not at all.  If you're working in one department but start to see that you might do better in another, speak up.  This isn't prison, this is not a life sentence.  Convention volunteering is meant to be enjoyable while being helpful to the convention.  If you aren't happy where you are, say something and get to a place that you enjoy and can bring the most benefit to the convention.

I don't get to actually experience the convention.
You will get to see what the panels and events are before anyone else.  You will set your own schedule of what hours work for you.  

Only super nerds volunteer.
Haha... No.  You don't have to be an expert in comics, anime, or gaming to participate.  There are people of all kinds and that makes for most of the fun.  You get to meet many people and (my favorite) make many new friends from the experience.  

I'm not a people person, there will be too many people.
There are many departments that don't see the light of day.  You could work IT or help cook the food to feed the volunteers.  You don't have to be in a department that puts you in the middle of a large crowd if that makes you more comfortable.

It will be too time consuming.
Again, this is all about working around you.  You don't have to sign up for more time than you are able to give.  If you have to go to your grandmother's birthday dinner that night, just let someone know.  

I won't get to have any fun.
I personally get to think that as a volunteer that you open the doors to extra amounts of fun.  Not only do you get to be part of the fun of the convention going on, but you get to be part of the fun that happens among the volunteers.  

The convention has nothing that I'm interested in.
Then we REALLY need you!  We need you to tell us what you think the convention is missing so that we can try and include your interest.  Your contribution of your interests are vital to the convention's success.

If you haven't signed up to volunteer for MGA Con, please visit Heroes and Villains Comic Shop and fill out a volunteer application.  


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