Our Recruitment Live Lab!
Last week FeelGood hosted a movement-wide Live Lab for all Education & Recruitment Chairs to discuss all things education and recruitment. You can watch the entire Live Lab or read a summary of what was discussed below.
Why Education AND Recruitment?
Considering FeelGood chapters are required to have leaders who fill 5 specific leadership positions, it’s curious that the work of Education and Recruitment would be paired together. So why is that? Because we believe that the two absolutely go hand in hand, and that the best way to get people interested in being involved in FeelGood and to sustain that interest is simply through education. You want to recruit and retain members? Tell them about the work of our partner organizations and how they can play a role in ending extreme poverty.
We believe that people, at bottom, care deeply. When people are actually made aware of the conditions of extreme poverty – the reality, causes, statistics behind it–the fact that around 20,000 of our human brothers and sisters die every day because of this human-caused problem–and the fact that this is all a part of the worldview we allow to perpetuate that creates the context for extreme poverty–people can’t ignore these facts! They can’t help but want to get involved. Deep down, we all want our lives to matter and make a difference, and Education & Recruitment Chairs are the leaders who can show members how exactly to take meaningful action!
#1 Tip for Recruitment
So that leads us to the number one tip for how to recruit new members. Ready for it? It’s a profound one!Ask everybody.
That’s it! Ask people who are committed individuals who clearly want to make a difference, of course. But really, ask everyone, because EVERYONE wants to make a difference with their life, wants to leave this planet better than they found it, and everybody IS committed…but they may have lost touch with it. The veil of resignation, of discouragement and disappointment, has fallen on them. And a great recruiter has the courage to lift the veil of discouragement. As Lynne Twist, Pachamama Alliance founder, reminds us, the word discouragement just means disconnected from your courage, or disconnected from your heart. Courage comes from the word for heart. And it’s a great recruiter’s privilege to stand so powerfully in the mission and vision of your work. The mere passionate stand that you have touches something inside of them. And then they remember that they care, that they have a passion for something, they have a commitment that they’ve sort of lost touch with. So a great recruiter gets people back in touch with who they really really are and lifts the veil of disappointment, discouragement, I don’t matter, I can’t make a difference, and gets people in touch with that.
And worst case, if they say no to you because they don’t care about hunger in particular, or extreme poverty, or SDGs, or grilled cheese or care about something else, that’s great! It’s a privilege to get their “no” as a response, because that’s a sign that they’ve gotten in touch with something else important to them, and you are responsible for helping them get in touch with that!
Useful Educational Resources
You will find a plethora of resources in our online Resource Center, including at the top where there are 4 new Labs under the category “FeelGood 101”. These Labs are, as the name suggests, great intros to some fundamentals of FeelGood, like where all money raised goes, how the Commitment 2030 Fund Works, and a section of FeelGood’s most Frequently Asked Questions.
In particular for Education and Recruitment Chairs, check out the Educational Resources, for both ideas of Labs to do with your entire chapter, with just your leadership team, or on your own. All of these Labs are also replicated as actions that you can log to earn points on Cheese World!
Some Concrete Recruitment Idea Brainstorms
We also discussed some of the things we do at chapters to recruit. Ideas included:
- Asking other organizations on campus for partnership, whether it means a partnership of getting volunteers for a certain deli or event one time or on a regular basis, or partnership on a catering event, or straight up pitching to the members of another org that they join FeelGood
- Implement an incentive program for current members. UVM has a member of the week program where one member is recognized at the weekly meeting and wears a silly cheese hat for the duration of the chapter’s meeting
- Always be thinking about recruitment, especially at events and delis. At delis, think of customers as potential people who could one day be the president of your chapter!
- Another easy way to show regular member appreciation is to offer snacks/candy/refreshments at weekly meetings.
- Up your FeelGood branding game by putting FeelGood branding wherever you can on campus!
- Give samples at club fairs, career fairs, or any fairs – on a stick or toothpick
- At accepted students day, send a representative to chat about FG and then pique new students’ interest with samples and coupons!
- Present at different dorms/RA meetings/fairs throughout the year. Recruitment is not something that ends after the activities fair ends–it’s ongoing!
- Make sure your chapter has a sammie suit and that someone wears the sammie suit!
- Use social media like Instagram and share a picture with your friend– then bring them to the next meeting!
- And if that’s not enough to try, check out this Lab: 70 ways to recruit members