I’ve been doing a lot of training recently, through my company Market Viewpoint, for the membership organization world, for-profit and non-profit, and as I was thinking of those of you who make up this podcast audience, I realized that many of you are board members, committee chairs, and volunteers for organizations that are membership-driven.
So what I wanted to do on this podcast was share some of the customer service (or in this case, member service) best practices from across industry lines, in the hope that the organization that you lead or for which you volunteer, can attract and retain more members.
Consider some of these best member practices:
Practice Confidentiality – Keeping the private business of your members under wraps is always a good practice. Should any member suspect they are being gossiped about by staff or other members, it won’t be long before they disappear from your membership rolls.
Encourage a Culture of Respect – Create a team of staff members that care and respect each other and members will follow suit. Be a solid team.
Practice Professionalism – This includes how you run all aspects of your organization.
Member Recognition – Consider ways to reward your most active and supportive members. People like being recognized with rewards, plaques, and gift certificates. Member recognition can also take the form of public praise at meetings. This approach is inexpensive and effective and definitely one to consider.
Give Members Visibility – This is a best practice that is related to member recognition in that it calls the member into the spotlight, but it’s slightly different in that the member in this case is in the spotlight for a longer period of time.
Tap Skills and Talents – When people join organizations, they usually want to contribute in some way. Most recognize that simply belonging isn’t as fulfilling as belonging and contributing. I know that’s definitely the case for me. Find ways to tap the skills and talents of your members.
Arrange Discounts and Deals – We all like saving money from time to time and one of the things that membership organizations can do to demonstrate value for its members is to negotiate deals with related organizations, suppliers, vendors, and companies on their behalf.
Providing value and being conscious of serving your members is going to go a long way to helping you keep your members happy and isn’t it going to be nice to not have to replace members who leave?