Membership - What is YOUR Story?
Randy Lusk, Membership Chair
I was going to start off by saying it's almost spring, but in fact, it has been spring for about 5 weeks now. How awesome it that! It's about time we got spring instead of going from cold to hot – it's a nice change. I want to thank all members for keeping ISAWWA one of the strongest in AWWA. We are currently 7th overall in the number of members, great job everyone!! I want to go over a few things and look forward to another great year.
When talking to individuals about membership you need to create a story. Here are a few things to keep in mind when talking to people.
- KISS – keep it short and simple.
- TARGET – don't send a wingtip message to a flip flop. I know most of you right now are like, what?!?!. It just means don't use the same message on a young person that you would on an older person.
- CASE – copy and steal everything; use other people's techniques and ideas to help each and every one of you. Remember, one size doesn't fit all! Try to find out people's names right away and keep using it, make them feel special. People want to belong and be recognized - that is human nature.
I'm now going to talk a little about retention and give some insight into what I've learned in an effort to help you.
- Orientation – Make them feel part of the club, people want to belong. I know I said this above but this is very true and important. Human nature is to want to belong to something.
- Participation/Utilization – Get them involved early and often. New members will want to get involved; and you will want to get in touch with them with 60-90 days of their initial recruitment to help get them involved.
- Leadership – Show them how we learn leadership from AWWA and what we can do with it in our current jobs, and how it has helped you; the art of inspiring to achieve a common objective.
Keep the new going. Just like having a new car, the longer the smell is there, the longer we take extra care of it. This is what we need to do with members - keep it going and don't forget about them. Recognize those getting involved; make sure to show appreciation whenever you can. If you're talking to someone who stopped being involved or stopped being a member, let them know that they are wanted and missed; make them feel part of us again. Obviously they wanted to be involved in the first place or they wouldn't have joined. When talking to members, former members and potential members, we need to have passion. Remember why you joined and share bring this with them. If you show them your enthusiasm and commitment, you'll undoubtedly excite them into joining AWWA or retaining their membership.
Think like a prospect. Know your members, know the organization, customize how you approach people. Try to be unique and always be honest. Like I said above, get their name and use it . . . a lot. People will often ask you, "what am I getting out of membership?” My answer to them is that they can get whatever they want to get out of it – it's up to them. We can show them the benefits and share our ideas and our experiences; but be honest and let them know that, if it's what they want, we will help them with the tools, but we cannot give them the experience. They have to achieve that on their own.
I would like to come up with a slogan for membership and would like ideas from you. Remember if you have seen one you like; e.g., CASE (copy and steal everything).
ISAWWA is also going to be participating in the 2012 Membership Matters Challenge. Our goal is as follows:
- YE Total Students: 41 (Currently at 40)
- New YP: 10 (Currently at 4)
- YE Total Membership Goal: 1878
- Retention Goal: 88%
I am asking all members to help ISAWWA reach this goal so we can show why we are one of the top sections in AWWA. One of the new key elements is our website. Everyone needs to learn how to use it and to take advantage of it since you get it for being a member. Everything from Webinars to Buyers Guide (for vendors) is there. Learn it, love it and use it. Also, don't forget free webinars for 2012, new and tapped ones.
One last note, go CUBBIES