Friday, February 27, 2009

Rotary Membership: A Chilling Analogy

Rotary clubs are in the business of advancing the Object of Rotary.  They have done it by satisfying the networking, friendship, and achievement needs of business, professional, and community leaders. 

Effective Rotary clubs, those that have stable or increasing membership, satisfy these personal needs. 

What about the districts and clubs that are losing members?  Too often they waste time, treasure and talent on convenient diversions rather than examining the more difficult issues that sometimes require systemic and attitude change.

Perhaps this brief analogy will encourage more critical thought and discussion about membership development.

Jim Henry, Zone 34 RRIMC 

Click here for the Analogy. 

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Ask the RRIMC: How Small is Too Small?

Q. Our district now has two clubs that have membership of 9. We are working with these clubs to grow this membership. Is there any official RI policy regarding if a club’s membership declines to a certain number? Both of these clubs were formed three years ago with the minimum required membership of 20 and both had sponsor clubs.

A. There is no RI "minimum number" that causes a club to cease to exist, except for zero. However, there are a number of small club membership incentive programs trying to get clubs to reach goals above 20 members. That is defined by RI as an indicator of a "struggling" club. Click here for more info.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

DG Bill Pollard from District 7600 shares the following from the website of Rotary International in Great Britain and Ireland (RIBI). The website is  

Benefits of membership

As a large and diverse organization, Rotary provides individuals with the power to help those in need. There are countless opportunities to make a difference to those less fortunate than ourselves.

In an increasingly complex world, Rotary maintains a simple philosophy - make friends in your own community and throughout the world.

Giving back to the community
Through Rotary, service to local and overseas communities is well organized and rewarding. If you like helping others, here is your chance to do something worthwhile and make a real difference.

Fun and entertainment
Rotary is fun... a lot of fun. Every Rotary club and district arranges parties and activities that provide a welcome distraction to a hectic business life.

Business development
Networking opportunities are endless. Rotary consists of a cross-section from every business community and its members come from all walks of life. Rotarians help each other and collectively help others.

Personal growth and development
Membership of Rotary develops leadership, public speaking, social, business, personal and vocational skills as well as improving cultural awareness.

Continued learning
Clubs organize programs and weekly meetings to keep members informed about what is going on in the community, the country, and the world. Each meeting provides an opportunity to listen to different speakers on a variety of current topics.

Travel opportunities
Every Rotarian is welcome - even encouraged - to attend any of the 33,000 clubs in over 200 nations and geographical regions. This bond creates an instant friendship wherever you are in the world. Many a Rotarian in need of a local doctor, lawyer, hotel, dentist, or other expertise while travelling has found assistance through Rotary.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Retention: Club Program Best Practices's Interactive "Your Voice, Your Solution" blog takes up the issue of what do you do when your club program speaker is a no-show? 

Here are ten of these best practices ideas: 
  1. Share the content of the latest Rotarian magazine
  2. Open forum on Speaker topic led by last two club Presidents
  3. DVDs from the Rotary Library
  4. Play Trivial Pursuit by table
  5. Vocational talk by recent Rotarians
  6. Keep Powerpoints from the RI website on standby computer
  7. Have a standby Rotarian ready to do a pre-arranged program
  8. Go over Rotary calendar for upcoming events
  9. Current events in community
  10. Do a fun Rotary Trivia game from the ABCs of Rotary booklet. 

Recruitment Resource: Graphic Art tells Polio Story

The February 2009 issue of The Rotarian magazine features the story of Polio eradication being told through the medium of graphic art. 

This innovative way to tell the Polio story potentially appeals to the Gen X, Gen Y and Millenial generations, who grew up reading comics and magazines in similar formats. 

New Humanity in Motion Resources Available

Rotary's Humanity in Motion television , radio , print , Internet , and billboard public service announcements (PSAs) focus on Rotary volunteer efforts that address critical humanitarian issues. Whether funding scholarships, creating neighborhood centers, or ridding the world of a terrible disease, Rotary club members believe anything is possible.

Focusing on increasing membership, the Humanity in Motion V DVD and CD-ROM set contains PSAs for television, radio, print, and billboards.

Rotarians can use these PSAs to obtain free or low-cost ad placements with their local media.

Click here for more information and for downloads

District 7720 Project Featured on News

Governor Vivian Mott and Rotary District 7720, Northeast North Carolina, are featured in this weeks edition of News at

The article, entitled Resources to help you celebrate Rotary's birthday, details The District Day of Dreams project, a one day effort on Rotary's birthday, February 23, to have all Rotary clubs in the district perform service in their local community. 

Younger members joining Rotary clubs as networking tool

Article from the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel Online provided by PDG Sandy Duckworth of Fredericksburg VA

The Rotary Club of Milwaukee is working hard these days to stay relevant as a networking group 95 years after it was founded.

That means embracing Internet tools like social media to recruit young people.

"The view is that service organizations are dead and membership is dying," says Mary McCormick, executive director of the Rotary Club of Milwaukee. "We're constantly holding up the mirror to figure out how to continue to be relevant."

Rotary International has a presence on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn and sponsors discussion groups on those sites. The Rotary Club of Milwaukee, with 400 members, is not yet using social media, although its members use Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn to send out news, listen to what Rotarians are discussing, answer questions and help Rotarians connect with each other.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Worldwide & Zone 33 Membership: What the Statistics Say

The numbers are in! For January 2009, that is. 

Worldwide, Rotary is up 10,948 Rotarians from July 1, 2008, a +0.91% increase, resulting in a world membership total of 1,217,037 Rotarians. The number of clubs worldwide has increased by 19 to 33,135, according to statistics published this week by R.I.     

Reversing a +0.27% increase showing atthe end of November, 2008, membership trends in our Zone 33 (NC, SC, VA, E TN, WV, USA) took a generally downward direction from the period from November 30 2008 to January 31 2009. 

The statistics were the focal point of a Zonewide videoconference led by R.I. Director Eric Adamson and RRIMC Bevin Wall on February 10, 2009 that included Governors from around Zone 33. Zone 34's statistics closely mirror those in Zone 33.

The statistics, all showing changes from the July 1, 2008 RI Start figures, show Zone 33 with a -0.59% decrease in membership zonewide, with a net loss of 197 Rotarians. 

However, District Governors related a number of administrative issues, including the (temporary) suspension of several medium size clubs, that, in particular, reduced numbers in Districts 7550 and 7680 by over 100 Rotarians, thus disproportionally skewing the numbers. 

There also continue to be concerns about the data discrepancies between R.I. and the DaCdb database used by all Zone 33 districts for reporting.     

The number of clubs in the zone has remained relatively static, however, Governors across the Zone indicated progress on new club formation in their respective districts, many of which may charter before June 30 2009. 

The upcoming Regional Membership Seminar on March 26-27 2009 & The Presidential Membership Conference on March 27-28, both in Washington DC were discussed and promoted. The focus for the seminar will be planning, promoting and conducting an effective District Membership Event.
Click here for the full copy of the latest Membership Report, showing membership for all districts and zones worldwide. The last page of the report contains the Zones 33 & 34 data. Contact RRIMC Bevin Wall for further information.