The purpose of this study was to determine the characteristics and motivational factors of effective Extension advisory leaders. This Delphi study was conducted with a selected group of County Extension Directors and a group of Extension State Advisory Leaders. The study identified 10 characteristics that distinguish an effective Extension advisory leader. Some of these characteristics are explicit and easy to observe, while others are implicit and difficult to directly observe. Therefore, it is practical to use directly observable characteristics of effective advisory leaders when selecting volunteers. Once potential volunteers are spotted in the community, implicit characteristics of effective advisory leaders should be used to further screen them before they are selected. The study also identified the eight most important factors motivating individuals to volunteer as effective advisory leaders. Understanding these motivational factors is helpful for creating an environment for attracting and retaining effective volunteers. Understanding their motivation for volunteer work and creating an environment for them to meet the motivating factors for volunteering will lead to volunteer satisfaction and retention. The findings of this study can be used to build strong Extension advisory councils.



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