Mentor a Member...A Program for Membership Improvement
Retaining members, especially active, interested members, is the key to membership improvement. Keeping members is one of the biggest challenges we face. We feel that this challenge can be met by following the suggestions outlined below.
We call the program "Yes M'am". This program is a one on one program, person to person, member to (new) member. Most simply, an ASPE member brings in one new member and shepards them through their first year. The "M'am" in Yes M'am stands for Mentor a Member.
It starts with a voluntary pledge from each officer and member to bring in one new member. They get a whole year to do it, and there is no penalty for underachievement. We feel the pledge works best if it is a public show of committment. At our chapter awards banquet, we will have our officers stand to show their leadership pledge. Next, all the C.P.E.'s should stand and show their continued committment. Finally, we will ask the rank and file members to follow suit. The volunteers should sign a pledge card, and at the following year's; award banquet, the mentor should stand and re-introduce his/her new member to the chapter.
How then do we mentor our new member? As a mentor, call your new member to remind them of the monthly meeting. Offer to pick them up and take them to the meeting. Be sure to sit with them at the dinner meeting and introduce them to as many members as you can. If you are an officer, explain how the board and committees work. Give them a small job to do; something easy at first, something to allow them to feel like their participation is appreciated. If you are a C.P.E., explain how that process works and the real benefits it can provide. Let them know how your chapter works in the community supporting education, professionalism, and training. They key thing is to communicate, educate, and participate.
Join us. Take the pledge to improve the quality and quantity of our membership. Finally, think about the fact that if only half of us are successful, we can double our membership in only two years!