January 4, 2013

Be inviting, always

Attracting new members to service clubs presents an ongoing conundrum. It's both hard and easy to do. After all, we belong to a service club, be it Optimist, Rotary, Kiwanis or Lions, among others, because the association meets our needs. When it stops meeting our needs, or when we start missing meetings, it is time to take a look at the formula. If it's not meeting our needs, how can we expect it to meet the needs of others? 

I'm watching a discussion on a LinkedIn group about attracting new members to a Rotary Club where one poster has written: 
For attracting new members, there is no single formula or capsule that a club can adopt. The club has to approach the situation from all directions. 
  • The weekly meetings should be interesting 
  • The weekly programs should benefit the members and match up to their expectation 
  • The club has to do good and effective service projects in the community 
  • The club should have a good and effective PR campaign
  • The members should invite their friends and acquaintances to the meeting to join
  • The members should have a good networking in the community
  • The members should invite their friends in social network who are there in the same city
The word that comes to mind from this post is "inviting." Your club has to be known, be seen and provide an open, welcoming environment to all; but perhaps most important is your personal responsibility to the club. You have to be inviting as well. Literally, you have to be inviting those you meet to experience the club, its projects and programs, and to join.

Simple reminder, friends: just ask someone to join you and your service club and then work together with them and other members to ensure it meets their needs. When you include new people and proactively work to meet their needs, you'll find a formula to help your club constantly improve and remain relevant to all.

Just be inviting and your service club will grow.

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