Rotary International Membership
Membership and New Club Development Month
Grow or Die. (Now that we have your attention)
That phrase is commonly heard in the context of businesses and companies. It is also entirely appropriate for our clubs and our organization, especially here in North America. We have seen it. YOU’VE seen it.
Once thriving, engaged, and relevant clubs who got below a viable critical mass of members and with a couple of unpredicted circumstances, they’re gone.
Districts who were once strong and had full and vibrant committee structures, insidiously slipping toward that threshold of membership that crosses the breakeven point from an economic viability standpoint. You have seen it, or heard of it, or been a part of it. These districts are split apart into pieces and combined with neighboring districts or merged in their entirety with the district next door.
Zones, a grouping of districts, can have the same thing happen to them. Read the column this month from D6290, one of the 5 Michigan or 4 New York districts who we will be joining with soon. We are in the transition phase for that right now. Those 9 districts are currently a part of Zone 29. On July 1, 2020 Zone 29 will cease to exist. We have a problem and we need your help. One of our goals for the next two years for Zones 24 and 32 is to stop that trend. Stop the bleeding. Stop the continued and insidious decline in our membership. On June 30 of 2020 it is our hope and our plan that membership in our two zones will be on the rise. It is an opportunity, not a problem.
It will only happen with the help of everyone who is reading these words right now. Each of you. Everyone. All of us. How? A two pronged attack:
1. Our legacy clubs need to be stronger and more relevant. Not all of them, but many have slipped into a place where they are comfortable and welcoming to their current members and are not very welcoming or attractive to folks who might want to become a part of our organization. It is a fixable problem. Use the Club Health Check (find it at rotary.org) to see where the opportunities for improvement are and set a plan in place to accomplish them. Take advantage of the new flexibility offered up by the 2016 Council on Legislation. Use the Rotary Citation as a blueprint, a road map, for your success.
2. New Club Development. Not just a club that looks like the one you started in. New models. New prototypes. Models and methods of engagement that are attractive to folks of any age who can’t fit into our legacy club model. Eclubs. Passport clubs, Satellite clubs and others we haven’t even invented yet.
Well that’s all well and good Jeff, you’re thinking. Exactly how do you expect us to do this? Look on the left margins of this publication at the list of all our Coordinators. They are an invaluable resource to you to help make this happen.
Start with the Rotary Coordinator Team. Everyone can help though. Public Image and Regional Rotary Foundation Coordinators are subject matter experts in their field but have crossover in making membership in our organization attractive and compelling. You’re not in this alone. There are people with training and tools to assist you.
Grow or die. It is a choice. It ls YOUR choice. Let’s do this.
Source: Rotary International