The Masonic Renewal Committee offers a wide variety of resources to help aid in the recruitment, member retention, and overall functioning of lodges and Valleys. Below is an overview of its retention handbook, written by RCE consulting, breaking down the process into four crucial segments: reality, change, ideas, and envision.
In order to know where we are going, we have to know where we are. Check in with your lodge or Valley and consider areas of weakness, strength, opportunity, and threat. Keep in mind the core tenants of Freemasonry and the reasons why men join the craft: fellowship, education, and purpose. Learning how to transform your space to provide the vessel for these fundamentals will act as a powerful retention and recruitment tool.
Change can be difficult, but it is a necessary step towards growth within an organization. In order to become successful, it is vital to go through a reflection process that leads to an understanding of what your members like, dislike, and believe can be improved.
What are your most popular events?
What events bring in the most people?
Ask your members about their ideas for improvement:
What do they enjoy the most?
What keeps them coming back?
Working with a team to effect change is a great way to get people involved, as well as employing the truth that “two heads are better than one”. Round up a team to pave the way for transformation, enhancing support for your effort, as well as creating a forum for discussion and ideas.
Programming is one of the major ingredients to creating a strong brotherhood within your lodge or Valley. Events, meetings, presentations, and degrees are a great platform for brothers to spend time together, create bonds, and learn from one another. Utilize some of the popular event ideas below in order to appeal to a wide variety of brothers. These event ideas were created to be simple, yet enticing, as well as foster “the enrollment process,” making sure that new members feel welcomed, comfortable, and wanted.
Career Night Program: Network and learn from professionals of all ages.
Hobby Night: Let the membership display their hobbies and see where interests collide!
Membership Bingo: Learn about members in a fun setting.
Family Night: Crafts for kids, wine tasting for parents, family movie showing.
Envisioning the future is essential when starting the road to transformation. If the group you envision 10 years from now is similar to where it is today, then there might be no need to change what you are doing! Collect responses from members of your lodge or Valley about where they envision the organization will be in 10 years and see where answers overlap. This exercise can provide great insight. “Creating a clear and compelling vision for the future creates a destination. Once there is a destination, a clear route can be established. A map is no good if you don’t know where you are at or where you want to go,”(RCE Consulting).
Interested in more information about recruitment and retention? Check out the Masonic Renewal Committee website for resources.