In It to Win It Friendly Competition Spurs Membership. Even a small prize can be a powerful motivator when clubs compete against each other. In District 39W in southern Idaho and eastern Oregon, clubs added 60 new Lions in two months by competing against one another to see who could add the most new members. “The enthusiasm was just tremendous,” said District Governor Pat Brown. Brown said they started the endeavor because the district realized they were a bit behind on their recruiting goals for the Lion year. District leaders wanted a way to jumpstart recruiting, so they decided to offer two expense-paid trips to their district convention. The district would cover the registration and hotel for the person who recruited the most new members, and the person from the club with the highest percentage of net gain. International Director Gary D’Orazio served on the membership board that propelled this campaign. He said the board spent less than $100 communicating the competition and then about $500 on the prizes. “We were addressing the spirit of the Lions and rivalry,” D’Orazio said. “When you stir the pot and put everyone into the frying pan, people keep popping.” Brown said they got the word out to each of their 48 clubs. “We mailed a flyer to all of the individual club presidents,” Brown said. “We had some clubs that had not even thought about doing anything with membership.” Each club participated with varying degrees of success. The Boise Special Olympics Lions Club experienced a net gain of 68 percent, besting other clubs for the top spot. President Shanna Endow said the group took the advice of Guiding Lions and Sponsoring Lions and offered membership to all their acquaintances. “If you don’t ask, you’re not going to get new members,” Endow said. “It’s been great for our club because the people are all interconnected. So everybody knows somebody and it’s really strengthened our club. It’s made us more productive and it’s just a really strong, core group of people.” Brown said the club was enthusiastic in its efforts. “It’s hard to compete with these young kids because they have such great ideas,” he points our. Brown said it was a great learning experience not only for clubs but also for district leadership. “We’re realizing that we need to spend a little more time in educating our clubs on recruitment. The tools are available,” Brown said. Most importantly, each club had fun cheering on and competing with their fellow Lions. “It’s amazing how something simple like a membership drive with a small incentive increases enthusiasm because they see it coming from a different level,” Brown said. “It was fun with clubs competing with each other.”
Published by International Association of Lions Clubs . View All Articles.
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