Visit Club Growth Page
I am so excited to start my message with good news that FIVE new clubs chartered in our district in September! Four of the clubs are corporate clubs while the fifth is a community club. Be sure to read my sections below on:
New Clubs, Challenged Clubs, Club Coach Program, Membership Dues And Quality Club Meetings, Non Renewing Members, Guest Packets And Finally, Signing Up New Members.
I look forward to seeing you all in the coming weeks at your Division Contests and next month at Conference in Niagara Falls!
The first club, Kenaidan La-Capitale Toastmasters, is a combination of a construction company and a financial services company located side by side that decided to join hands and start a club for their employees; they chartered with 25 members in Area 43 Division C Mississauga. The second one, CRH Corporate Toastmasters, a building materials and construction company in Concord, had a club champion who was a toastmaster in Montreal and was passionate about the program, eager to bring it to his colleagues at work, and chartered with 41 new members in Area 21 Division A! The third, BASF Toastmasters, a chemical manufacturing company in Mississauga, wanted to offer the program as a professional and personal development program for their employees, and chartered with 27 members in Area 46 Division C. The fourth, Citi Orators, also offered the program as part of employees’ development and chartered with 24 members in Area 42, Division C. The fifth club is the crowing jewel – An Advanced Community Club in Mississauga, called Great Minds Advanced Toastmasters Club, which calls for dual membership and a CC – we got 24 charter members, to Area 45 Division C. What a great success story! These added approximately 150 new memberships to the district, which will be tripled over the year due to their early start! We have plenty of new club launches in October but are looking for your help with more leads so we can charter as many new clubs in the first half of the year! We have prizes to give you for leads!
Unfortunately clubs also fold during the year and we’ve had several of them who’ve already done so, with perhaps more during the year. We want to help these clubs as much as we can and are working hard to come up with new and improved club rebuilding strategies. A success story here would be the Midland Club in Division N which was on the brink of folding, but with some creative strategies, is now back on track and under an able coach. The Articles in the most recent Toastmasters magazine couldn't come at a better time for challenged clubs. Check out "Last-Minute Scramble" (by James Sultan) and "A Roadmap for Club Growth" (by Jay Sunderland) in the October 2016 issue if you're looking for some good ideas to help your challenged clubs!
Club Coach Program
Our Club Coach Chair Kristina Johnston is appealing to anyone who may have an ALB or above to come forward as a volunteer to coach a challenged club, which will not only be invaluable experience in your Toastmasters journey, but will also catapult you to achieving your ALS and onward to DTM, especially in view of the new Pathways program which will have different DTM requirements. Please contact her at email@example.com - incidentally she’s also looking for volunteers to help with Spring Conference 2017 since she’s the Conference Chair! Kristina is a big proponent of stepping outside your comfort zone. She has done this extensively herself and loves to pass along encouragement to others whenever possible. Please nudge yourself to try something new or nudge a friend. If you know of someone who could benefit from a nudge but are a bit shy to approach them yourself-let her know! Clubs that are challenged need help and many people want their ALS or else simply want to help other clubs. As well, conferences need lots of volunteers-what is your area of strength or area that you want to grow? Let Kristina know!
Membership Dues And Quality Club Meetings
As for Membership Renewals, we are happy to state that we are Number 1 in the Region for membership payments, at 90.3%!! However, we have a long way to go. We need at least 1500 more membership payments to achieve our goal of distinguished district. I appeal to Club Treasurers to quickly submit member dues that arrived late. Don't let these funds sit in your club's bank account!!! Remember, the member comes first, and needs to be a member in good standing, especially since contest eligibility is at stake. On the other hand did your club have members that did not renew? Renewals are directly related to Club Quality, in other words, "A quality club environment is the single most important factor in membership retention." Club Officers and Members – please refer to pages 45 & 46 of the Club Leadership Handbook for running Quality Meetings. In this world of acronyms, remember the acronym for Quality Club Meetings – VTFM – Variety, Time, Fun and Manual Speeches. Make sure your meetings have variety, they start on time and end on time, you put in the fun factor, and all speeches are manual speeches. As Ralph Smedley our Founder said, “People learn in moments of enjoyment.” I love Mike Storkey’s article in October issue – Show Up – For Yourself and Others. It’s truly the best way for you to help retain Quality Club Meetings!
Non Renewing Members
Did they leave? Club Officers should continue to engage with absent and past members for renewal and reinstatement of members. Please use the "Club Exit Survey" in this link
Guest Packet: Hand This Over to your Club Visitor
Does your club have an up to date guest package? Very often I visit clubs and the guest enjoys the meeting but leaves empty handed! How do you know they understood the program? Can we assume? No! Provide them with a suggested Guest Package found below. Make sure to customize it as per your own home club! VP Membership – are you listening?
Below are some items that you may want to consider
- A welcome letter from the President
- Meeting Roles & Responsibilities (A Toastmaster Wears Many Hats)
Signing Up New Members
Club Presidents; please encourage ALL members of the executive to be aware and able to sign up new members who may arrive as guests at a meeting and wanting to join when the VP Membership or the treasurer is away. So many times I am visiting a club and a guest appears who wants to join right away and the person who has the fee structure and knows how to sign them up is away and nobody else knows how to collect the fees and sign the new member up.
For a tutorial on how to register members, go to http://mikeraffety.com/ClubCentral.pdf. It's a great reference to all Club Officers. Please check out the two PDFs here, one on How to Register a Member and the other on Membership Start and End Dates, and remember:
- For Membership Contests (Smedley, Talk-Up & Beat the Clock), the membership begin date must be during the contest periods (i.e. Aug or Sep, Feb or Mar, May or Jun).
- For End dates, choose either the upcoming renewal or the one after.