Your Club Leadership Plan - North America

Your Club Leadership Plan - North America
Is your club vibrant? Does it engage its
members, conduct meaningful projects, and
try new ideas? Your club’s activities should
reflect the diversity and personality of its
members. As you develop a plan for your
club, use these tips and ideas, and be open
to letting your club evolve. Remember, if
you try something new and it doesn’t work,
you can always try something else. Every
member should feel empowered to
shape your club’s future and make it
When I became the president of my Rotary club, we
had nine members. We were a dinner club and had
two-hour-long meetings at a children’s restaurant.
The first thing we did to reinvigorate the club was
move our meetings to a golf and country club in our
area. This was a venue where professionals would
want to gather for a meeting — and it was free.
We then changed the format of our meetings from
dinner to a cocktail-and-appetizer style of meeting.
This enabled us to keep our meeting to one hour
long, was cost-effective, and allowed our younger
members to get home to their families for dinner.
Finally, we added variety to the structure of our
weekly meetings. Week one includes a vocational
talk, so members know about each other’s
businesses. Week two is a Rotary information
session. Week three is where we feature a guest
speaker, and week four is our club assembly,
where the entire club is updated on projects and
We asked club members to make a list of potential
members and then phoned them and personally
invited them to join the club. This resulted in 11 new
members, 90 percent of whom were under the age
of 40. Then we made sure that each new member
joined a committee based on their interest. Finally,
we make sure that we have a lot of fun at every one
of our meetings. This has been a crucial element
for us, as it has led to camaraderie and enhanced
Nick Krayacich
Rotary Club of LaSalle-Centennial
Decide where your club wants to be in
three to five years.
Your club includes an array of community leaders who share a passion to
make a positive impact. Together, decide what you want your club to be like in
three to five years. Then determine what you need to do to attain your club’s
vision. Your long-range goals should address your club’s membership, service
projects, public image, leadership development, and involvement in The Rotary
Foundation. Update your strategic plan as needed, and determine how all club
members can contribute to achieving long-range goals.
Resource on
My Rotary:
Strategic Planning Guide
Ideas to try
• Devote a month of club meetings to developing a strategic plan using the
Strategic Planning Guide.
• Hold a club meeting in a new location to inspire members to be creative and
voice their opinions.
• Develop a strategy for increasing member engagement over the next five years.
Set annual goals and enter them into
Rotary Club Central.
Once you set your long-range goals, you’ll need to set annual goals that support
them. Be sure your goals are achievable and measurable. Annual goals can
be entered into Rotary Club Central, where they can be tracked and updated.
Encourage all club members to view your club’s goals in Rotary Club Central
and provide input. Update your goals regularly so Rotary Club Central always
shows the most current information.
Ideas to try
• Focus on something your club is good at and make it something you’re great at.
• Ask club committees to propose annual goals that address community needs.
• Have a goal check-in on your meeting agenda once a month to update
All resources are available at
Resources on
My Rotary:
Rotary Club Central
Rotary Club Central
Resources course in the
Learning Center
Hold club assemblies regularly to keep
members engaged and knowledgeable.
Club assemblies help all members feel connected. When all members have
the opportunity to voice their ideas about club goals and activities, your club
can maximize its collective expertise to address a local need. Many clubs use
assemblies as a chance to inspire their members and fuel their shared passion
to make a difference. An environment such as a club assembly that welcomes
diverse perspectives is the perfect place to channel enthusiasm into action.
Resources on
My Rotary:
Club President’s Manual
Club Administration
Committee Manual
Ideas to try
• Exchange club presidents with a nearby club for a meeting. After the
exchange, schedule an assembly to talk about the experiences of the
president and members.
• Designate time in an assembly for new members to share their first
impressions of the club and for members to share new ideas.
• Once a month, include a 10-minute open forum at the end of a club meeting
and encourage members to present new ideas or a topic for discussion.
Communicate openly in your club.
Communication should go two ways in your club. Club leaders should
be transparent in communications with members, and members should feel
free to communicate openly with club leaders. Your communication plan
should include relaying information at club meetings, on your club website, and
through social media.
Ideas to try
• Frequently update your club website and social media accounts; separate
members-only information from information intended for the public.
• Pair Internet-savvy members with those who are less experienced to help
them navigate the website and social media.
• Share information with members and check in regularly to see how members
are feeling.
Resource on
My Rotary:
Rotary Brand Center
Prepare members for future roles to
maintain a smooth leadership transition.
Annual leadership changes provide opportunities for members to take on
new roles. It is helpful for members to understand the leadership roles and
get involved early in the transition process. There are many ways to achieve
continuity, including making appointments for multiple years; having a
current, incoming, and past chair on each committee; and having the current
club president work closely with the president-elect, president-nominee,
and immediate past president. Thinking ahead will help ensure that there are
enough volunteers to fill new leadership positions each year.
Ideas to try
• Have club leaders find their own successors during their terms of service.
They are the most familiar with what the job requires and who would succeed
in that role.
Resources on
My Rotary:
Leadership Development:
Your Guide to Starting a
Club President’s Manual
Club Secretary’s Manual
Club Treasurer’s Manual
Club Administration,
Public Relations,
Service Projects,
and Rotary Foundation
Committee Manuals
• Learn more about members’ talents and interests, and assign them to roles
they would enjoy and excel in.
• Conduct on-the-job training for incoming club officers at least one month
before they take office.
Adapt your club’s bylaws to support the
way your club works.
As your club evolves, so should your bylaws. The Recommended Rotary Club
Bylaws are a starting point for outlining your club’s practices. Consider the
recommended bylaws as a template that your club can edit and revise to reflect
new practices and procedures.
Ideas to try
• Check that your club is using the latest version of the Recommended Rotary
Club Bylaws.
• Put your club’s bylaws on your club website or distribute them at club
assemblies so members can offer suggestions.
• Review them once a year as a club and share them with new members.
• Consider running pilot tests of new club procedures to see if they work before
amending your bylaws.
All resources are available at
Resources on
My Rotary:
Recommended Rotary Club
Standard Rotary Club
Develop strong relationships within
your club.
Connect with other members in your club and find common interests.
When you enjoy your Rotary club, you will likely stay involved. When families
are invited to join club events, younger members are more likely to attend.
Provide opportunities for club members to make connections with one
another, especially when a new member joins the club.
Resources on
My Rotary:
Rotary Fellowships
Rotarian Action Groups
Convention registration at
Ideas to try
• Sit with different people at every meeting and get to know them better.
• Consider forming a satellite club to meet the needs of members who
commute or have young families.
• Invite friends and families to meetings, service projects, and events. Show
them how wonderful volunteering is, and encourage them to join or help out
• Survey club members to find out what kinds of social events they would like
to attend and days of the week and times that are convenient for them.
Make sure all members are involved in
activities that genuinely interest them.
Rotarians join clubs to create a positive impact in their communities and
to make new connections, and that’s why they stay. Club involvement keeps
new and long-time members engaged. Active members feel ownership of and
dedication to their clubs’ projects. Consider asking members to volunteer to
support service projects and other club initiatives.
Ideas to try
• Get new members involved early in meaningful ways. Find out why they
joined the club, and ask them to take on roles or help with projects or events
related to whatever convinced them to join.
• Conduct a member interest survey, and use the results to plan projects and
activities and to develop weekly programs.
• Have members introduce themselves to the club, including information
about their background, talents, and interests to make other members aware
of the club’s talent pool.
• Consider ways that members can learn and gain experience from club
activities. These new experiences can translate into professional and
personal development.
Resources on
My Rotary:
Communities in Action
Membership Assessment
Project Lifecycle Resources
Coach new and current members in leading.
Rotary clubs are full of professionals and leaders. With extra training
about Rotary and useful leadership skills, members will be well equipped to
lead your club one day. Prepare future club leaders by providing an orientation
for new members and leadership development opportunities for all members.
Current club leaders should be sure to attend district training meetings and
apply what they learn to their work in the club.
Resources on
My Rotary:
Connect for Good
New member information
Trainer’s Toolkit in the
Learning Center
New Member Orientation
Ideas to try
• Appoint a club trainer or training committee to oversee the training plan for
your club.
Leadership Development:
Your Guide to Starting a
• Let young and newer members take on leadership roles. They can apply their
existing knowledge and experience while also honing skills for their careers.
• Ask members what leadership skills they would like to learn.
10 Create committees that are practical for
your club.
Your club should have committees that help the club run well. Recommended
committees include:
• Club administration
• Membership
• Public relations
• Service projects
• The Rotary Foundation
Create other committees, such as Rotary grants or youth service, if you need to.
Whichever committees you choose, they should help your club take action to
achieve its goals.
Resources on
My Rotary:
Club Committee Structure
Club Administration,
Public Relations,
Service Projects,
and Rotary Foundation
Committee Manuals
Ideas to try
• Small clubs: Consider how you can combine the work of committees.
• Large clubs: Create additional committees to get all members involved.
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