Enabling Change

That's you
leading change

"I feel re-energised!
Hit with a zapper!"

Passion Mashin'

An inspiring workshop
to energise volunteer groups

Presented by Les Robinson

  • Reinvigorate your volunteer group
  • Grow your membership
  • Harvest a crop of brilliant ideas
  • Learn proven, simple, low-cost techniques to spread your message
  • Win the hearts and minds of new supporters

This enjoyable interactive workshop harnesses the power of reinvention to spark new zest and enthusiasm in volunteer groups. Participants hear about great reinvention and communication ideas and have a chance to share your own. They also create a great pitch to touch the hearts and minds of potential new members.

This workshop will transform the way volunteer leaders interact with their community and may just spark a whole new way of working.

For bookings and enquiries

Email workshops@enablingchange.com.au

or phone Les on 0414 674 676

Background to Passion Mashin'

Passion Mashin' originated in a short workshop Les gave at the 2011 Coastal Volunteers Forum in Wollongong. The result was so inspiring that two agencies asked him to develop a full day version to reinvigorate and inspire their Landcare and Bushcare groups.

Responses from participants have been nothing less than fantastic. Words like "inspiring", "invigorating", "enthusiastic", "confident" appeared again and again in the evaluations. The workshop clearly met a heart-felt need.

The basic idea is simple: increasing the membership of volunteer groups can't just be about better marketing. In fact marketing is mostly ineffective. What works is to break the humdrum routine with surprising, fun activities that get people buzzing. 'Reinvention' is the key idea and it needs certain skills and ways of thinking that participants learn and practice in the workshop.

One kind of reinvention is mashing unexpected passions, say kayaking and bushcare, to create a new concept and a new volunteer experience. Passion mashing generates original and buzz-worthy ideas which change the public story of what their work is about. Here are some examples from the pilot workshops with Landcare/bushcare volunteers:

  • Tea in the Trees (bushcare + making tea flavoured with native leaves)
  • Coffee Lovers Bushcare (finish with campfire and real coffee tasting)
  • Le Bushcare (+ practicing French)
  • Buzzcare (bushcare + native bee conservation)

A second kind of reinvention is "disruption". Participants use a simple process to "disrupt" the conventional wisdom of Landcare/Bushcare to incorporate a wide range of ideas, redesigning the volunteer experience to be more enjoyable and satisfying.

After lunch the participants have a crash course in behaviour change followed by a session where they craft inspiring and engaging invitations Đ the key messages that invite new members to dip their toes in.

It's an enjoyable hands-on workshop with simple tools and plenty of practice sessions.

The shape of the day

Participants work in small teams to practice skills in innovative thinking, facilitation and creating persuasive invitations.

Timing: 9.30am to 3.30pm

Session 1) What is Passion Mashing?
Why are people are more intrigued and motivated by a subway symphony than by either the subway or a symphony separately! The secret is delight - something that happens when seemingly unrelated passions are mashed together. Delight is attractive, motivating and contagious. People love to be pleasantly surprised. And they love to pleasantly surprise others by talking about things that are pleasantly surprising. As a result, delightful mashes travel very well by word-of-mouth and it's easy to get their stories covered in the media.
Practice: Mashing passions.

Session 2) Reinvention case studies

Session 3) How to generate great ideas in your group

Session 4) What is disruptive innovation?
What gets us stuck is the "conventional wisdom": the set of automatic assumptions that never get questioned.
Practice: Working in facilitated teams, participants disrupt and reinvent their particular volunteer experience.

- - - lunch - - -

Session 5) An introduction to behaviour change
Very few people change in a bubble. Most of us change through interactions with people we know and trust.
Practice: Participants share emotionally engaging stories about their inspiring volunteer experiences.

Session 6) Crafting a persuasive invitation
The seven steps to creating an inspiring and motivating invitation for new volunteers.
Practice: Each team crafts an invitation using the template.

Booklet: How to reinvigorate a Landcare or bushcare group.

"If not, then what?" is an inspiring collection of reinvention ideas generated by participants in Les's Passion Mashin' workshops. Download the booklet. (287k PDF).

Les shows how to use the "If not, then what?" method
It's a way to generate a host of convention-busting ideas amazingly quickly. From the fun session at the North East Landcare Forum 2013.

What they say

"I feel re-energised! Hit with a zapper!"

"Loved Loved the passion mashing and writing the invitation."

"Ideas, energy, positivity, interaction, inspiration."

"Inspirational ideas to use."

"Thinking outside the box about approaches to bushcare."

"Great facilitator. Great ideas! Great group!"

"Great to meet with reps of other groups sharing ideas. Excellent facilitation."

"We all need to do this more often - positive reflection and generation of new ideas."

"Lots of stimulating, thought-provoking ideas and concepts."

"I leave with a feeling of optimism."

"Thank you!"

"It's great for my work as well as bushcare."

"I learnt the difference between leafleting and talking personally."

"Great ideas but many need the co-operation of council. I hope the council employees here spread the ideas."

"New ideas for new approaches and models. Thinking beyond the entrenched ways of doing things."

"Inspired by Les's enthusiasm and encouragement. Great opportunity to be inspired by other local bushcarers and their stories and passions!"

"Les is so positive. Great facilitator - relaxed and funny and very well informed, very inclusive."

"Many thanks for an invigorating day!"

"Really worthwhile opportunity to reconsider the models we are wedded to."

In-house workshops

To book in-house Passion Mashin' email Les Robinson at:
or phone 0414 674 676.

A taste of Passion Mashin'

Part of a Passion Mashing workshop illustrated by the wonderful Jessamy Gee. Thanks Knox City environmental volunteers! (Click to expand 4 pages).

Who's got the zap

  • North Coast Regional Landcare Network (NSW)
  • Banyule, Manningham, Boroondara, Nillumbik and Knox bushcare groups
  • Tamworth Regional Landcare Assoc.
  • Central Coast Council bushcare volunteers
  • LEEP volunteer managers, western Sydney
  • Singleton Council volunteers
  • Burnett Mary Regional Group
  • CVA Wetlands Program - NSW south coast
  • Territory NRM, Darwin
  • Coffs Harbour Regional Landcare
  • Shoalhaven Council bushcare volunteers
  • Hunter Region Landcare Network
  • Randwick Community Centre (volunteer groups)
  • Illawarra Landcare
  • Hawkesbury-Nepean CMA (workshops at Lawson, Picton, Hornsby, Tempe, and Ryde)
  • North Central CMA (Castlemaine and Wedderburn)
  • Hornsby Shire Council (Hornsby)
  • Lachlan CMA (Parkes)
  • Central West CMA (Dubbo)
  • The Hills Shire Council (Kenthurst)
  • Western CMA (Cobar)

"All great deeds and all great thoughts have a ridiculous beginning." - Albert Camus

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