Presented by the MD-21 MERL Team
Why do Members Drop?
Lack of Involvement
Not Working Together
Significant part of a Lions Club
Important for efficient functioning of
If you hold effective meetings you will:
Keep members interested
Keep your club running successfully
Start with honestly examining your club
Don’t want to fix what is not broken
Are your meetings well attended?
Actions of members:
Interested? Enthusiastic? Bored?
What is atmosphere of meetings?
Do you have an agenda? Follow it?
Know some parliamentary procedure?
Can you handle interruptions?
Are you enthusiastic?
Do members participate?
Are you open for suggestions?
Listen to your members
Get opinions from your club members
Give out a questionnaire to solicit input
Learn where the problems are
What are strengths and weaknesses?
Was your perception the same as your club
Identify problems and look for strategies to
Good Meetings do the Following:
Accomplish their goals
Are relevant and
interesting for attendees
Start and end on time
Basics for efficient, productive meetings
Knowledge of parliamentary procedure
Ability to deal with difficult behavior
Ability to assert yourself when
Detailed agenda is crucial for
Only a few items are necessary
After basics, include elements that
Make sure to write down time
allotment for each item
Call to order by president
Pledge & Invocation
Introduction of guests
Reading & approval of minutes
Analyze your agenda
Does your agenda reflect your clubs
Are reports and business kept short?
Prepare for unexpected
Don’t forget the questions and
Keys: Brief and Relevant
Club Programs – inform or entertain
Recipients of club service
Local community leaders
Local business people
Club partners – LensCrafters, Habitat
District Lions Committee Chairmen
Speaker’s Bureau Service
Consider relevant timing of program
Always have backup ready
Let speaker know about your club
Let speaker know how much time
Keep Meeting on Track -President
President’s job is keep meeting on track and
Parliamentary procedure can help to run
smooth and make fair for all
Maintain control – demonstrate your
leadership skills – use gavel
Stay calm and focus
Refer discussion to a business or board
Attitude is Infectious
Your attitude will affect attendees
Do you enjoy it?
Are you excited about being a Lion?
Your feeling will be mirrored in your
Enthusiastic and positive vs. Bored and
Get comfortable with public speaking
Know parliamentary procedure and your
clubs’ Constitution and Bylaws
Project confidence and enthusiasm and you
will inspire and motivate your club members
Keep things fresh, change order, encourage
Involve and inform members about changes
Explain reason for changes and how it
affects functions of club
Communicate changes in newsletter,
website and by phone
Be positive, confident, flexible &
demonstrate concern for members
By having more effective meetings
by overcoming the lengthy and
boring aspects of meeting will go a
long way to retaining your club
The second way to retain members
is by overcoming …
Focus on Club Dynamics
Are politics getting in the way of club
Do cliques within the club snub new
members, making it difficult for them to feel
a part of the group?
Negative cliques and club politics can leave
members feeling left out and resentful.
It is a chief reason members drop from
How people fit and how comfortable they
feel has big impact on club functioning.
Splintered groups or proceeding mired by
politics can cause members to have a
Club is unattractive to new members and
does not obtain goals
Start with club evaluation again
Are there well-defined groups within your
How do these groups interact?
It is a positive relationship?
How does it effect club functioning?
Are new members welcomed warmly?
Do members feel a part?
Cliques are not all bad
Cliques form in large groups typically
Not all cliques are bad
People naturally gravitate to those they feel
comfortable with or know.
If the sub-groups are making some
members feel left out, they could be
Ways to minimize cliques
Make members feel like part of whole group
Keep members focused and involved
Make members understand goals and
objectives of club
Implement team-building strategies
Handling Club Politics
Build your team – need cohesive and productive
group to help members stay interested and
Exercise open communication, shared goals, and
Members must know and trust one another – work
together of service activities
Kudos to Club Members – “Thank you” in front of
other club members – builds pride
A terrific team-building exercise
Promotes free flow of ideas
Use in committees or club as whole
Brainstorm any aspect of club: membership
recruitment, retention, service activities, etc.
All members should participate
Keep positive, no idea bad, take notes
Open communication is vital
Team members need to feel that they will be
heard and input is valued
Members need open forum to discuss issues
Working through problems helps bring
members closer together
Keeping Things Fresh
Cliques usually form in clubs where things remain
the same like committees that never change
Cliques become tighter over time making it harder
for new people to become a part – new ideas are
Old members become bored and complacent and
new members become frustrated and unimportant
There is a need to keep things fresh…
Combat the Cliques with Change
Rotate committee members every year
where possible to give people new
opportunities – promotes fresh perspectives
Evaluate club projects and service activities
after completed to identify areas of
improvement – make notes for next year’s
Change seating arrangements
Make New Members Feel Welcome
Warmly welcome new members
Make sure there is follow up after initial
Most new members need period of nurturing
to really feel a part of the club – both socially
and their involvement – (make them
Proper Induction and orientation is crucial
Sponsors must take job seriously
Job not over after sign up
Make sure inducted and orientated
Sponsors must continue to monitor recruits and
help with problems
Have sponsor report their findings concerning new
Responsibility of all members to involve new
members and make feel in team
Use Secret Lion
Have some fun while encouraging members to mix
with their fellow members
Before club meeting begins, select a member to be
“Secret Lion”. Everyone is to mingle. As the
meeting nears close, you ask the Secret Lion to
identify those members who never made contact.
Tail Twister fines in humorous way.
Gets “no-cliques” message across
Getting Back To Basics
Clubs that are letting politics interfere with
proper functioning of the club and causing
the club not to meet goals, then club is not
filling service objective.
Reacquaint club with goals, objectives and
mission. Create mission statement.
Exercise helps club members to refocus
efforts to serve community
Be Strong and Communicate Change
Call on your leadership skills to exercise authority
and navigate through the politics of the club
Get training in leadership if necessary
Communicate changes and help them understand
reasons to gain support which is critical for
Make that visit or phone call to show you care
about them and club.
Keep eyes open, club dynamics change.
Keeping Members Involved in Club
Lack of meaningful involvement is one of
the primary reasons members drop out of
Many reasons Lions join, but chief among
them and reason most stay, is to volunteer
time to help those in need.
If don’t get, they will look elsewhere to fill
their need to volunteer.
Begin With Evaluation Again
Does your club warmly welcome new
Does your club involve new members in
Are “important” activities and
responsibilities “reserved” for certain
Have club members held the same
committee positions for a number of years?
Club Evaluation Continued…
Do you encourage members to actively voice
Do you encourage members to become
involved in activities that interest them?
Do you know your members’ interests and
Are club members excited and enthusiastic
when performing their duties?
Club Evaluation Continued…
Do any of your members seem bored or
Has attendance at your meetings dropped?
Has participation during your service
What are your members’ interests?
The key to meaningful involvement is to
give the members opportunities to serve that
they are comfortable with.
What are you members skills, interests, and
Have members complete a Skills and
Interest Form and discuss results.
Show you are concerned about their
Harness New Recruit Enthusiasm
Get new members involved immediately
Don’t make them feel like they need to wait
before actually participate
Create atmosphere that encourages diving in
and participating fully.
(Be careful – don’t overwhelm and frustrate)
New Member Involvement
Identify responsibilities that are important to the
club, but don’t require vast knowledge of club
functioning to successfully perform.
Match new members skills with task to help them
Communicate with new members, and get
sponsors to check on them.
Solicit their ideas and get committee chairs to do
Build a Team
If members feel significant and important part of
team the will respond positively.
Team building fosters cooperation, enthusiasm,
and gives your club direction.
Team building requires shared goals,
cooperation and communication.
Work on develop goals together and socialize
together to build a stronger team.
Keep Interest Level High
Periodically ask members for input
Rotate committee assignments
Encourage members to try new challenges
If small group, put assignments in hat to
Encourage members to seek leadership
Create a suggestion box
Hold brainstorming sessions
Evaluate activities at conclusion
Have members visit other Lions clubs and
get new ideas.
Hold a Summit on a topic or area to
encourage and involve members’ ideas
Focus on Working
Smart Strategies for Club Cooperation
Clubs that are unable to bridge differences and
unite for a common goal will create dissatisfied
Is your club providing the needs of your
Start by analyzing your club…
Observe Your Club
Do you have a diverse membership base?
Is there friction between club members? Is
it hurting club?
Are members comfortable voicing opinions?
Does your club feel like a unified group? Do
you have common goals?
Work Together for Success
Club members need to work together if club
is going to be successful.
Most clubs sharing common goal helps
members work together easily.
In some clubs, clubs must try hard to work
This is especially true in clubs where the
membership is evolving.
If a club has had many long-standing,
dedicated members, and there is an influx of
eager new members, the existing group can
feel threatened by the likely redistribution of
Allowing this behavior to fester will lead to
an “us vs. them” atmosphere the will cause
resentment and split group which will result
in effective service.
Dealing with Diversity
Diversity is at the heart of LCI
Men and women is 192 countries
They are from different backgrounds and are
various ages, professions and ethnic
The association’s diversity should be
embraced and celebrated.
All people approach things in different ways, no
matter whether man or woman, young or old, etc.
We need to take a look at the other’s point of view.
(deliberate vs. aggressive and detail vs. casual)
Accepting differences will make more cohesive
and better functioning club.
Approach differences with understanding and
patience is key to success.
Work Together by…
Avoiding Stereotypes – don’t make blanket
assumptions based on gender, race or age.
We need to learn about individual.
Accepting Change – some are threatened by
change and uncertainty.
Need to reassure that changes are meant to
strengthen the club.
It’s vital that club member’s attitude toward new
members be positive
If new members feel unwelcome, they will likely
drop out and share their negative experience with
The fear of change should not keep you from
recruiting new members
New members may change composition of club,
but new members mean new and better ideas for
service (i.e. Women)
Establishing Meeting Manners
Create positive atmosphere by establishing
ground rules for personal conduct
Guidelines allow members to express
themselves freely and set the stage for
Ideas for meeting conduct guidelines
Meeting Conduct Guidelines
All members should be treated as equals and
All members are encouraged to voice their
opinions on subjects
All members should be encouraged to ask
questions to clarify what they do not
understand of if they want further
Meeting Conduct Guidelines (con’t)
Members should be allowed to express
themselves openly and candidly, however,
all members must understand that personal
attacks are not acceptable and all members
should be treated with respect
When brainstorming – no idea considered
Officers should not show favoritism
Benefits of Diversity
Fresh Ideas and Perspectives – different
collective life experiences
Better Ability to Serve – reach broader
spectrum of people in need
Develop Personal Relationships – develop
friendships with people not otherwise able to
Finding Common Ground
No matter what your members’
backgrounds or beliefs, they all have one
thing in common: the desire to serve those
While there are many reasons to become a
Lion, commitment to community was
Draw on this common ground to solve
differences in opinions
Setting Common Goals
Organizations success = clear goals
Develop a mission statement for your club
and set yearly goals to help meet the mission
Communicate mission to club members on
a regular basis to help to bridge the gap of
differences between members
Idea: “Member of the Meeting”
Randomly draw one person’s name and that
person becomes your “Member for the Meeting.”
The other members need to state one thing they
appreciate about the member being recognized,
and no one can repeat what another person has
It is a simple way to make a member feel special,
and stimulates others to think about what they
admire in this person.
Dealing with Conflict
All clubs have conflict at one time or another
Essential to handle in timely manner
Broad base comments at meeting will not
Discuss with parties in relaxed, non-
Avoid putting anyone on defensive
Listen and mediate dispute to come to
mutually satisfying conclusion
Making all club members feel that they have
a voice in the club is vital for stimulating
cooperation among members.
Members should feel free make comments
and feel that they are valued
Encouraging input with no follow up will
Ideas for encouraging input:
Create suggestion box
Hold brainstorming session
Evaluate activities at their conclusion
Have members visit area Lions Clubs
to get new ideas
Focus on Meetings and make effective
Focus on Club Dynamics and handle cliques
Focus on Involvement of members
Focus on Working Together and avoiding
conflict among members
Then you can retain your members and
avoid the drops