Increasing Rotary’s ability to deliver on projects
Is it time we rethought how we campaign to get new members? Many of us are involved in the private sector where we see employees not only as an asset to the organisation but also as a cost thus within reason we want to keep their numbers to a minimum. So we only take on new recruits when we know that their contribution to the enterprise will be more than their cost.
So, what do we do, often because we’ve got HR breathing down our necks, but also because it makes logical sense?
  • We define what tasks we need completed, the job description;
  • Then the attributes that the successful applicant needs, the person specification;
  • Then we advertise, hire head hunters, etc. and eventually
  • Recruit a new employee who’s going to carry out a specific job to contribute to the organisation’s success.
Could we apply that methodology to new membership in Rotary?
            Firstly what tasks need to be completed? Notice it’s not ‘we need new members, let’s have a membership campaign’ it’s what tasks need to be completed.
  • It might be some skills required for ‘Internal’ reasons
    • for example a new treasurer or a
    • person to arrange the speaker’s programme,
  • we have too many/too few female members
  • a local ethnic minority or age group is not represented .
    • or an External reason,
    • we are running a project and we need more people to carry out the work
It might also be that we want to be more representative/relevant - Rotary was originally founded to enable business men to trade with other professional men they knew and trusted. I know, it’s now men and women and it’s not only professionals who are members but the thought’s the same, we need members who represent our whole community. That is the shop keepers, the restaurateurs, the plumbers, the medical and legal professionals, and so on but also members of immigrant communities.
A person who knows everybody, a good connector who can arrange interesting speakers and events. Or relatives, friends and neighbours who are prepared to help take action, not become members in name only but do the task as a Saturday morning stint to help a friend. Plus targeting local business people; telling them of the networking opportunities that are represented in the club. As an aside I can tell you that my lawyer, doctor, insurance broker and travel agent were all engaged as I got to know them through Rotary.
            1          identify the task, then;
            2          the person who can fill it, then;
            3          approach that person
Give them a chance to make a real contribution to society by being involved in the community via Rotary.  
Then not only will we have success in increasing numbers but also the effectiveness of our projects.