By Daryl Conley, Administrator -
I can't really think of anything to add for this month - if you read this newsletter, you know our membership is down - nearly 50 away from our goal as of Jan 27 - we have a lot of work to do if we are going make our goal of 765 by April 30, which the first criteria toward receiving the Premier Lodge Award. Keep reading for some ideas on membership....
Don't forget to join us on the last Friday of January, February, March, and April if you have sponsored someone during the month - you are guaranteed a cash prize!!
Jan 12 - had a non-member call me today asking about membership. She said a friend of hers had told her about our fabulous steak dinners and now she and her husband want to become members! Just goes to show, word of mouth is still the best advertiser.
Let's all start using this tactic to convince our friends, relatives, and neighbors to become members. You can even invite them to a dinner, as long as you sign them in and they do not pay. Guests are allowed into the lodge twice before becoming members; this gives you the opportunity to "sell" us to them. After that, of course, they have to commit to being a member by filling out an application and paying the appropriate fees and dues.
The lady that called me also said she had checked out our newsletter, which made me feel pretty good; she is already familiarizing herself with our activities and what the Loyal Order of Moose stands for. I am glad to see that this newsletter not only keeps our members informed, but entices new members as well. I hope that all of our members are reading this at least monthly and keeping up with the activities at the lodge; perhaps if they did, they would not let their dues lapse and they would come in more often.
All that being said, we have had a pretty sad year in terms of membership; we are down over 60 members from where we started the year - perhaps we all need to get more "word of mouth" out there and let others know what a great organization this is!!
Plans are moving forward toward our addition and renovation. We have approved the blueprints, now we are waiting on a bid for the construction. As soon as we get it, we will notify the membership to come to a special meeting and vote on the project. This will add a 45' x 16' addition to the northwest corner of the building which will house a storage room and our meeting/multi-purpose room. Then we will remove the portion of the wall that now separates the existing meeting room from the social quarters and expand the social quarters into that area. This will also be designated as a non-smoking area and will have its own bar and tables for seating. More details will available once we call the special meeting.
SPECIAL MEMBERSHIP CAMPAIGN NOW THROUGH APRIL 30 - We will be starting two new campaigns in January, which you can read about in this newsletter. For the lodge, EVERY sponsor will win a cash prize to be given out on the last Friday of January, February, March, and April. For the Moose Legion, sponsors will either receive a free steak dinner, on year's dues or $50.00 cash depending on the number of members they sponsor into the Moose Legion. Should be a lot of fun and our way of saying thanks to our sponsors who put in the effort to get member into or back into our lodge.
Sunday, February 7 - Super Bowl Party and Pot Luck - bring a dish and enjoy the game at your lodge!!
Friday, February 12 - Filet Mignon dinner and Sweetheart Auction - bring a sweet treat and bid on other items for you and your family to enjoy!!
March 3 - 6 - our annual AZ/NM mid-year conference at Crowne Plaza Hotel in Albuquerque, golf tournament on March 3, Moose Legion breakfast, March 4, 25 Club party March 4, Awards Banquet March 5, and Higher Degrees breakfast March 6. Registration forms available in Administrator's office.
I will leave the rest of this article as is, for those who haven't had a chance to read it lately. Have a great month!!
The old "RETENTION, RETENTION, RETENTION" slogan has been modified to "RETENTION, RETENTION, RECOVERY." "Recovery" is getting our old members - those have dropped out over one year ago - to re-join. Our new AZ/NM President, Roy Austin has also issued a "Challenge Coin" membership recovery program. He purchased several "coins" that he will give out to any member who gets five former members to re-join. As of convention time, there were three in all of AZ/NM - one of which was he himself and I am proud to say I was one of the other two. So let's challenge each other - let's see how many and who can be the first (or second as it were) in our lodge to receive their own personal Challenge Coin. You will be doing your lodge and fraternity a favor and earning a nice token for your efforts. I have also posted a count board near the ATM so that we can track those members who sponsor a former member into the lodge.
Brand new this year is a Members Rewards program. Members can earn points by sponsoring new or former members, they earn additional points when their sponsored member renews their dues after their first year. We can earm points by attending training sessions and conventions, being elected into office, joining the Moose Legion and/or earning higher degrees of the order, and the list goes on. Once earned, these points can be redeemed for gift cards, credit at the Moose Store, payment of dues, or cash. Hopefully, this new program will provide incentive for our current members to go out and sign up new or former members while earning credits for themselves. To check on your points, go to www.mooseintl.org and click on My Member Benefits. Here you will find all your membership statistics, including number of members sponsored, last time you attended and officer's training, date you were enrolled, your original sponsor, etc. If you have never logged in before, follow the instructions and enter your Moose ID number as your log-in name then create your own personal password.
So let's not wait until March or April, or even January or February - let's all go out and try to sponsor a new or former member now - or try to convince that friend or acquaintance to renew their dues before they are dropped. Remember - we will pay half the application fee all year lodge, so a new or former member can join for just $10.00 plus $40.00 for the first year's dues.
MI has also introduced several new ways and new programs where you can donate to Moose Charities. Remember that any donation to Moose Charities is tax-deductible. Check out the Documents section of this newsletter for downloadable applications and information.
Last year's campaign was Back to Basics. This year's campaign is Build our Foundation. It is time to start afresh, with the core values of our fraternity - an increase in membership and an increased knowledge and awareness of our two great humanitarian endeavors, Mooseheart and Moosehaven. MI has provided a new video that explains what the Moose is and how we support Mooseheart and Moosehaven and our communities. We show this during our orientation on the second Thursday of each month. You do not have to be a new member to see it; any and all members are invited to attend the orientation and view the video. It will give you insight and knowledge about our order. Knowledge is the key to selling a product. As members, we are selling the product of membership and fraternalism. You dan do this by passing on your knowledge to others and to prospective members.
If you know someone who has not paid their dues recently, PLEASE try to convince them to pay up. Remind them of all the benefits of being a Moose member, even if they don't come to the lodge. Come and get one or more of our Member Benefits brochures to show them. If you yourself have not paid please reconsider, come see for yourself what the Moose and our lodge has to offer. Let's not wait until April 1, 2016 to try to reach our goal of 764 - my nerves can't take it!!!
Remember, if you need to pay your dues, you can pay them at the lodge. If I am in my office, I will be glad to pay them on-line for you, either with cash, check or your own personal credit card. If you don't catch me at the lodge, simply pay the Social Quarters Attendant on duty (cash or check) - they will give you a receipt and I will pay it on-line as soon as I get back. I am normally in my office from 9:00 am - 5:00 pm, except for lunch which I usually take from around 1:00pm - 2:00 pm.
Another issue that prevents people from joining or keeps them from renewing is second-hand smoke. Over the years we have addressed this issue numerous times by installing more smoke eaters, adding a fresh-air ventilation system and repairing non-functioning systems. We also began a no-smoking policy years ago in the dining hall during meals, and have recently added a no smoking section to our Social Quarters, near the entrance to provide adequate ventilation. While we have received both positive and negative response to this, we feel it is our duty to provide a comfortable environment for all members, non-smokers and smokers alike. So please, if you've quit us or plan on quitting us, give us a second chance and continue to help us support our community, our children at Mooseheart, and seniors at Moosehaven.
Sponsors, once the application is filled out, your job is far from over. You should try to get them to attend an enrollment. After they are enrolled, you should call them periodically and invite them to join you at the lodge for dinner or drinks, and while you are here, introduce them to the officers and to other members so that they feel welcomed and not left out. Hopefully, this feeling of belonging will also prevent them from dropping out in the years that follow.
Have a great month!
Daryl Conley - Administrator