Programme for week commencing 7th March, 2013
This programme was written for last week, but we held it up for the Open Meeting, so it was with delight that I read on Facebook that Sinead at the District 1100 Conference, had promoted our eClub well and had inspired those attending about our eClub and all we’ve achieved. I hope all of you are proud of our achievements and enjoy being a member of the eClub, please tell people about us and help people to know who we are, what we do and how we do it.
A few weekends ago I was privileged to attend the Rotary International in Britain and Ireland (RIBI) Assembly at the NEC in Birmingham, as a member of the incoming 2013/14 RIBI Membership and Retention Development Committee. In preparation for my presentation to the assembled District Membership Chairs, which I undertook to deliver with our District Governor David Houghton, I was mindful of talking about how the eClub was formed, including how over the past year we’ve worked hard to consolidate our position.
To see the presentation please visit eClub Toolkit Updated
This week I want us all to consider the eClub’s Membership Development and how we can continue to grow. In the early days of our eClub there was much wondering how all this would work, although we are still evolving we are starting to see better through the fog. We’ve lost some people on the way, which has been very disappointing, however I’m mindful that we have been following the Group Dynamics Graph (see below), we’ve had our storming period at times, when questions like ‘no one is communicating’, ‘it is being left to just a few people’, and yes there is still work to do, but we are starting to move into the norming stage.
What we’ve learnt is that patience is very key to starting an eClub, especially when many of the members are new to Rotary. We need to hook into their passion and they will gradually understand where we are going, for instance it was good to read this post from Lorna Breslin on FB this week about the planned visit of the President of RIBI to the Uplands School charity shop:
“It is very exciting and we are really looking forward to the visit. I have been assured that there is plenty of cake and it will be great to share with the President of RIBI how Rotary has supported and helped Uplands with various projects. It’s fantastic and demonstrates the importance and ethos of Rotary and the impact that it has with regards to providing what is needed at the right time to help support projects and good causes. The beauty of it is, is that it’s not about money and giving money away to places,it’s about the people and the networks that Rotary creates and how people’s skills, knowledge and contacts are used to help support and move projects forward . It makes me feel very proud to be part of such a group, even though I always worry about being a busy person which being part of the eclub is for, as I don’t get to meet all the members in the flesh . However, the Rotary eclub works! Which is fantastic. I have met a few lovely members and I am sure I will meet many more as I progress on my journey through Rotary.
I was thinking about what Rotary is the other day and yes it is about service above self , but also it’s about providing experiences, opportunities and about learning journeys and making friends and connections along the way.”
Other issues that have been raised about Rotary membership, for instance about the cost. These issues are still being dealt with, for example at the Zone 5 meetings over this year a Task and Finish Group has emerged seriously looking at proposals to put forward to introduce Family Membership into Rotary. Whilst you will already have read our Secretary’s comments about the District 1100 Budget, which I have already challenged at the District Executive Meetings, we do need to get Rotary in general to examine their practices and if necessary change them to be part of the 21st Century and certainly be affordable to attract new members.
The eClub subscriptions still remain very low and at £1.45 per week, the cost of a medium coffee. Please could you start thinking about who you know that you could approach to join us. I have found just talking to others about Rotary causes some interest, maybe bringing them to an event or activity might help them see what we do. Don’t leave it at just the initial invitation, I find it takes one or two attempts to show them this might be interesting to join, you might like to comment how you were hooked below.
We would also like to propose an extension to our two months free trial for new provisional members to the eClub. After they have completed the two months we propose they are offered the choice of becoming an associated member for the rest of the year at £25 per person or they can become a Rotarian at £25 joining fee (one off payment) and £75 subscription. Those who opt for the associate status and then go onto to become Rotarians will have already paid the one off joining fee, if they decide not to continue the £25 will go into eClub general funds. Please can you indicate agreement or not to this proposition, which we could start from July, 2013.
So can you think of someone you know?
Have you told them about your journey so far as an E-Rotarian?
Have you ideas as to how we may attract others to join our eClub?
It is tremendous to hear about the excellent presentation that Sinead gave at the District 1100 Conference last Sunday, she enthused and changed people’s mind sets about E-Rotary and what our eClub has achieved in a very short time. In other words it wasn’t that Tim Mason saying the same old thing, no, it was another member who thinks the same, so there must be something about this E-Rotary! Please help promote our eClub and help get people gossiping about E-Rotary, so that others may consider joining us.