The #1 Takeaway was you must have a plan or initiative. Like Field of Dreams - "Ray" Shoeless Joe Jackson said "If you build it they will come". In other words if you don't build it "plan" they won't come. However, we chapters/state councils tend to expect them to come. Similar to my trip to Holland, MI this Spring to see the 180k tulips someone built.
Saturday started out with an overview of the five stages of a Membership cycle. First every chapter or state council needs work to build AWARENESS. For example as a chapter president in the early 2000s I hand no idea the state council existed let alone what they did. Over the last six years I have been very active in increasing that awareness. Second, RECRUITMENT is important especially in how you go about doing it. So far here a few that will help with recruitment:
1) talk about features
2) every person need 6 touches to get to a level of consciousness
3) develop landing pages
We are fairly good at ENGAGEMENT with the programs, socials, forums, newsletters, magazines, workshops, conferences, and volunteer opportunities. Therefore, I personally don't feel I need to speak to this topic but you should realize this is part of the membership process.
The step is the most important step because RETENTION costs 6x less money and time than recruiting them. So my thought is why spend all that time and money if you don't retain them. Wouldn't it eliminate your up front time. Seems like a no brainer to me. Perhaps you look at your no renewals first before you start attempting to recruit the unknowns. At least you already have a relationship with your nonrenewals. All you have to do is find out why the did not renew and fix it.
Like all plans the EVALUATION stage is ultimately important to determine wether or not goals were met, the plan worked or NOT, and help determine what should be tweaked.
This process is not rocket science but it is a reminder that just like our paid jobs any volunteer related goal needs the same careful thought and planning to be successful.
By Donna Rogers, SPHR ISC SHRM Chair