Volunteer Also v/s Volunteer Only

This article is based on a session by Shri Janardan Hegde. This is not verbatim. It is about two type of volunteers at Samskrita Bharati. It applies to all volunteer based organisation. Even in a commercial organisation also, there are two types of employees. I wish this article will help all readers to be better volunteer and better employee for their respective organisations. 

We all know meaning of "also" and "Only". For example let's take a sentence "I am doing work" Now how its meaning changes when we add "also" and "only" 

I am doing work
I am also doing work
I am doing work also. 

I am doing work
I am only doing work
I am doing work only. 

The word "only" indicates definitely. 

In any organisation there are two type of volunteers. (1) "also" category and (2) "only" category. At the beginning, all volunteers are "also" category. It is entry level. As they grow, develop, progress, they put their whole heart, and moved to advance level, that is "only" category. Any NGO like Samskrita Bharati is spread so much across the globe is because of such "also" category volunteer. Now let's see the difference in more details: 

For an "also" category volunteer the life is easy. He is like just swimming in the direction of flow. He does the work as per his capabilities. 
For an "only" category volunteer the life is not easy. He swims opposite to flow. He work beyond his capabilities. His life is like climbing a mountain. 

For an "also" category volunteer, there is so much flexibility. He can be 10% volunteer, 20%, 30%, ...90%, even 99.9 % volunteer. He has choice. If he feel difficulties, he may leave. He may follow his own schedule to work. There is lack of discipline. 
For an "only" category volunteer, there is no flexibility, there is no option. He is 100% volunteer. It is like PATIVRATA women. A women can be either PATIVRTA or not PATIVRAT. there cannot be 99.9% PATIVRTA women. Such volunteers do not leave organisation in any situation. They are forever. They are with full of commitment. 

Both volunteers play their role. The "only" category volunteers make the organisation to grow. Wherever they work, the NGO achieves new heights, with stability. Each NGO needs such "only" category volunteers. They are less in numbers. It is difficult to find them/develop them. They are rare. The organisation needs to pay for it. No bargaining. 
It is easy to find many "also" category volunteers. They are like doing JAI JAI KAAR. Here, there is a scope for bargaining to bring them. Sometimes, The organizer wonders, he will come or not, on time. So they assign lesser responsibilities and use them more like assistants. They are also needed in organisation. 

The "only" category volunteers, ask, "what need to be done?" They do not ask question : "how?" They do not think, there are no resources. They manage to organize/mobilize resources. It is like going towards destination without roads. They themselves make their roads. 
The "also" category volunteers says: "There are no resources only. How to proceed?" They walk on roads, that are created by others. 

There was a big event, where Samskrit Bharati volunteers were coming to venue from across the India. There was a list, who comes, when, which train/bus etc. The list handed over to a team of local volunteers. Now they need to plan, how to arrange vehicles.  They should not give excuses , "there are no vehicles only, what to do?" 

The "also" category volunteer thinks oneself as a person. So he has many excuses. Many other social responsibilities.  Kids exam, Health issues. Guest at home. etc. They may think, anyway what I will get, by doing this work. How much time I need to spend etc. 
The "only" category volunteer, only thinks, what is need for the moment for the NGO? No excuses. 
Do you think, that you will ever get time in life, when there will be no difficulties? Suppose you go to take bath in ocean, then do you think, that, whenever there is no waves, I will take bath? 

Once, Janaradan Hegade discussed with an "only" category volunteer. "Is it possible to bring Himalaya mountain to Chennai city?" The volunteer said, "Yes". Janaradan argued, "how it is possible? Himalaya is in North India. Chennai is city of South India." The volunteer explains: "I first see, who is asking me to do this work? If Samskrita Bharati is asking me to bring Himalaya to Chennai, then there must be some well-prepared plan. It is not blind faith. I am aware, I need to show my leadership skill, I need leave my all other works. Still My first answer will be 'OK, let's do it' Is it always impossible to bring Himalaya to Chennai?"

Janaradan Hegade gave another example about his interaction with another  "only" category volunteer. There were many back to back "Sanskrit Sambhaasan Shibir" (Spoken Sanskrit Workshop) to be organised. Too much work, co-ordination at multiple places. Janaradan met him at around 10 PM and asked about his dinner. No dinner. Lunch? No lunch. Then he noticed injuries in legs of the volunteer. Janardan surprised, "why are you not put on shoes? If you need money I will pay now." There was amazing response: "Where is time to buy shoes? There is no question of money. There are many tasks to be completed, that are more important than buying shoes"

Janaradan Hegade recall a very famous event few years back in Bangalore about "Sanskrit Pustak Mela" (Sanskrit book fair/sale/exhibition). He himself could not visualize before the event. He contributed to publications of books. There was very well coordinated and magnificent event. Even today also Bangalore people remember it. 

So what is conclusion? A volunteer should leave every thing? His job? His family? His social life? No. That is not the case. In-spite of having all these things: Job, family, business, social life, it is possible to spare time for volunteer work. A volunteer should have complete faith in NGO for the assigned task. Then he should put his 100% along with team. 

All volunteers at entry level, belong to "also" category. Yes, it is difficult to move up from "also" category to "only" category, and then stay at that category. However, for NGO to grow, they should have some such crazy "only" category volunteers. 

What do you say? 

Comments/suggestions/correction are welcome. 

RefJanardan Hegde Mahodaya's speech



Sudhakar Mishra said...

Good One !

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