STATE MEMBERSHIP ADVISER'S REPORT
“A Biker Walks into a Bar…”
We all know the rest of the joke, right? Something about a sexual act and a cheeseburger. Just to let you know, this is an article about ‘Retention’. What makes us go to the same places over and over? Why do we like one place over another? We all have certain reasons for going to a particular place more frequently then another and why we feel a certain loyalty to that place. What happens when you don’t agree with something in your favorite place? Some people get over it and some people will never go back. What if that thing, that happened, affected one of your Brothers or Sisters? You’re done, and your loyalty went exactly where it should have. These reasons and concepts are strangely similar to your Chapter, your membership and retention.
Why do we go to our Chapter meetings, functions and do things for the organization over and over? Because we have found that “bar stool” we want to visit monthly, weekly or even daily. We like the way it feels when we walk in and sit down and everybody yells “Norm”. We’re not talking about just recognition; we are talking about the level of comfort we feel. We don’t want to walk into a place where it feels like the music screeches to a stop and everyone turns and stares. Ask yourself which way are you making your fellow members feel and would they really want to stick around? Most of us don’t give a rats-ass about how we make others feel or their perception of us. It’s their issue if they choose not to attend or come back. When exactly did we, as Bikers, start getting so butt-hurt over insignificant BS? Just saying that we know when we feel that certain comfort and maybe we can pass that feeling along. We are a Brotherhood, after all, and a bar full of friends is better than an empty bar.
Many of us belong to several different “motorcycling enthusiast groups” but we have one that’s our favorite. We tend to gravitate toward places that have better structure. This is one reason why we stress being organized and abide by the procedures that our preceding members have laid out. We are talking about the COP’s and Robert’s Rules of Order. Have you ever taken a friend to one of your meetings where everything ran like clockwork and then taken them to one of your other meetings and afterwards had to apologize? Which one are you, or they, going to want to go back to? Retaining members is really just that easy. Offer them structure and they will return. Think about when you go into a place, like an all-American bar and grill, and you know what the place is about. Your taste buds are already gearing up for that cold beer and burger. Then you go into a place and all they have are IPAs, Sangria and a twenty-three (23) page menu full of stuff you’ve never heard of. You are probably going to stick to or go back to the burger joint.
Things happen, every now and then, that we don’t agree with. Basically, things that piss us off. If something isn’t going your way, at a meeting or event, it’s understandable that you may want to walk away and take a break for a bit, but don’t let something that small blur your vision of our mission. Be an adult. Make the choice to let it roll. Life’s too short to sweat the petty stuff and remember your loyalty. If it’s something major and has affected your Family, damn right bring it up and make it known why you have decided to leave. This way others involved have a little more information so they might not repeat their actions in the future. When you are standing and waiting for the bartender, that is super busy, and they at least acknowledge you, but can’t get to you right away, you are going to give them a chance. But, when the raggedy old B@!%* blatantly ignores your existence, you tend to let her know about it and you never want to set foot in the place again.
Retention isn’t easy, but it can be. Give people a warm atmosphere, a comfortable seat, a quality beverage, good food, and even better conversation and you will keep those bikers walking into your bar.
Numbers Are In…
DOWN!!!…. That’s where the numbers are since the October edition of Between the Lines. This relates to the numbers from Statewide Membership totals for the beginning of October. As you might be able to tell, as an organization, we depend on numbers and the support from those numbers. We all need to figure out what creates the upswings and what triggers the downswings. So, here’s the rundown.
October total, at the time this report was generated, is (5813). From Sep. to Aug. our numbers are DOWN by (135)!!
Districts that gained (1) Chapters that gained (11)
Districts that lost (7) Chapters that lost (31)
Districts that remained unchanged (0) Chapters that remained unchanged (4)
Top Chapters for the one month gains; Currently, the Top (5) Chapters;
Pike (+11) Mason Dixon (513)
Elk (+5) Erie (284)
Mon Valley & Jacks Mountain (+4) Highlanders (250)
Tri County (+3) Patriot Riders (194)
Clarion & Ridge Runners (+2) Keystone (182)
Here is the rest of the story;
Down but not out. There are still two months left in our “drive”!!!! Last month we only needed (52) new members, and retain our current members, to make (6000) by end of the year!!! This month we need (187) which is still obtainable. Keep yourselves advised on where your Chapter is and which “swing” we are currently in. Maybe it’ll motivate some growth, maybe it’ll spark some competition or maybe it will reinvigorate your energy for ABATE of PA and for what we stand for. Keep up the great work!
Peace, Ride Safe and Keep up the Great Work!
PS. CHECK YOUR MEMBERSHIP CARDS FOR YOUR EXPIRATION DATE and renew if needed.