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By PDG Rosemary Barker Aragon D5030
RRIMC Zone 23
Rotary is an organization which aspires to be a reflection of the professional and business people in its community. So, as we also aspire to bring in professional and business people under age 40—what do we know about them and what they are looking for in a professional and service organization? 
Think about the concept of the “employee value proposition” and apply it to “Rotary value proposition”. 
 It is: “A persuasive statement of what you have to offer aimed at appealing to a particular generation of recruits that is focused on the audience, not on the organization”.
              *Lynne C. Lancaster and David Stillman, When Generations Collide

Personally, it is hard for me not to start with “let me tell you about Rotary and all the great things it does”. (In other words, focused on our organization–not what the younger recruits might be looking for).

So, Rotarian John Martinka (District 5030) recently held focus groups with Rotarians under age 40. D5030 DGE Don Gregory created a special Membership Sub-Committee, chaired by John, for “Under 40 Rotarians”. They will develop branding messages and retention strategies for Under 40’s.                                                                                                                                                                           
Following are a few of the messages from the focus groups.

The under 40’s do not want to be in clubs composed only of under 40’s. They see personal (AND PROFESSIONAL) value being in clubs with more experienced Rotarians and Business people. So, how about inducting a group of younger professionals at once into our multi-age clubs?

Rotary is a way to “lend them a hand”. The under 40’s said they can learn from the expertise and knowledge of the more experienced members. They ask that we once-again recognize the vocational (and business related) value of Rotary. We have experience and insights to give to them—if we know they value that. What if we proactively offered Leadership Development opportunities to our younger members–NOW? What if our clubs had programs periodically which covered the latest and greatest in management or leadership concepts? Wouldn’t this be beneficial to Rotarians of any age?
They want to participate in service (but more hands on, perhaps even family focused—so spouses and kids could participate). Yes, they have money—but have many commitments (more expensive housing, daycare for 2-income households, etc).
So, at Clubs’ Goal Setting meetings or assemblies, suggest they address this directly.
Like boomers, they also see Rotary as a means to change the world for the better.  Our “service above self” and international humanitarian focus fits perfectly.
They want to “bring back the Fun”. (Now, what does that mean? Probably not fun as it was defined for Traditionalists and Baby Boomers—but something else. That would need to be a drill down).

Use the internet/e-mail and other forms of electronic communication more–for all communication—and who knows what else. Let’s ask them for help.

What do you suggest we do with these insights? Let me know your ideas. RBA
Rosemary Barker Aragon
RRIMC Zone 23




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