I just got this from my friend George Parker. He knows as more than anyone I know about what it takes to build a successful club:
Analyzing Your Clubs Success –Attracting New Members
I still believe that the core reason people join and stick with any group is because of one or more of these things:
1. The attendees have found something to believe in--- "One man with a belief is worth 99 without." It has been said that we do not motivate others, they motivate themselves based upon information they receive. "Truth is all powerful," ... if a person perceives information as truth it may be a motivator.
2. They have been welcomed and found a hospitable, friendly atmosphere. "Enthusiasm is catching like a disease." Sincere greetings and friendliness makes people feel welcome.
3. They have been invited, not in a "pushy" way, but kindly, softly, to serve as a greeter or some appropriate way---invited to select a committee of their choice--- in other words some club member (usually an officer or leader capable person) in talking with a new member can find out what his or her interests are-- slowly, at the new member's own pace, let him or her know you are interested in him or her and he or she is welcome to participate as desired in the club. Detect and respect the level of what the new member is willing to do. He or she may want to start out at a low level. If they sense a "pushy" atmosphere, they may rebel or just not show up again.
4. None of us are perfect, but we can measure our successes ---in a club, for example, when we have new people join us for a meeting, look at how many come back . If a person does not come back it may mean we did not impress him or her -- we did not sell our selves & the club purpose. Or it could be that no one is good enough to attract that particular person. But, on average, we can certainly get a feel as to how we are progressing. If a large percentage are not returning after seeing our club in action, then we better try and analyze why and see if we can improve.
5. A simple way to succeed is to look around at others doing the same things and try and find our why they are successful--what are they doing that we are not doing? Or, are they doing the same things we do only they are better at doing it.
6. Every club president, with the Board members, needs to be aware of what happens to prospective new members. "The room for improvement is the room that is never filled."