Membership Committee Report for July 13, 2015

Attracting and Retaining Members
By Tom Sturiale
Attracting and retaining members is the most important criterion in determining the effectiveness and long-term success of your Rotary club. A strong statement – is it really true? What do you think?
I believe a Rotary club’s approach toward gaining and retaining members is a reflection of the following: the management team; the club’s value proposition; the ability to conduct needed community projects; the public-relations efforts; the ability to maintain an effective outreach program; the willingness to target, contact, communicate and market the idea of Rotary to prospective Rotarian candidates; and the members' acceptance of the idea to promote an ongoing membership process. In other words, unless there is a solid Rotary foundation and a commitment to the idea of increased membership with objectives and strategies, gaining membership will be a frustrating experience.
Every club is at a different point in its age, experience, development and status.  You have to begin with what you have and where you are. The club leadership needs to carefully assess status of the club and what needs to be done to further the club’s development along all these avenues. However, you cannot wait until all the t's are crossed and the i's are dotted before you actively pursue membership efforts. 
Maybe new members are exactly what you need to break out of old habits. New members add energy, new ideas, new contacts and new technology. Start taking action now!
1. Identify your most outgoing personality and assign them the task of chairing the Membership Committee.
2. Have the members make up a list of prominent clergy, local politicians, retired businesspeople, educators, etc.
2. Write up a brief list of your major Rotary achievements and why you need that particular new member. Identify your dream objectives.
3. Approach the prospective new members and ask them to join your club’s effort to better the community and mankind.
4. Convince them that you need them.
Don’t wait until next week to begin. Start now! Get your entire club committed. This is hard work and takes some planning. A small group of dedicated Rotarians will make considerable progress. 
Tom Sturiale, vice chair of the District Membership Committee, may be reached at