Happy New Year! It’s a new year, a new semester, and a new opportunity for your chapter to recruit more members. This is the beginning of the second semester of the school year and a busy competition and conference season for FBLA. The two best ways to recruit new members in January is a combination between targeted recruitment and getting the word out about the conferences.
Targeted Recruitment: After first semester ended, many other clubs and organizations, such as marching band, football, and other fall-related activities, have become less active. This leads to new groups of potential members that will have less to do and therefore less that conflicts with FBLA activities. If you would like some recruitment methods to help you along, please refer to previous membership recruitment idea of the month articles.
Conferences: January is the month where regional leadership conferences are occurring all across the state. You can use these conferences as a focal point for recruitment. By having current members attend the conference and sharing their experience at them, you can inspire other members to join. I would recommend either having attendees talk about their fun experience or even having a meeting dedicated to conference results.
The first semester is almost over, but that does not mean that your membership recruitment efforts should stop. There are still many opportunities for your chapters to increase their memberships as we get ready for the second half of the school year.
One effortless way to recruit members for the coming year is to increase your public presence in your school. By increasing your presence you can make the other members of your school more aware of FBLA’s existence and what we do as an organization. This can attract many new members as well as opportunities for your chapter.
Here are some ways to increase your chapter’s presence in your school:
- Posters and Flyers: This is the prototypical way of increasing presence, and there is a reason that it continues to be one of the most used ways to advertise. It is relatively effortless to execute as you can utilize the posters your chapter received from Georgia FBLA in conjunction with simple graphics about recent developments in your local chapter.
- Announcements: By having your chapter’s upcoming events announced on your school’s method of communication whether that be through morning announcements, local newspaper, or any other way of reaching the members of the school, you can keep your current members attentive and updated while bringing the actions of FBLA to the attention of non-members in your school.
- Social Media: Another easy way to increase your chapter’s presence is by using social media. By posting information about your chapter’s recent activities, you can keep members up-to-date while reaching other possible members.
Many of our chapters have already reached stellar heights in membership recruitment efforts, building bridges to a successful year; but did you know that recruitment does not have to be limited to just members? You can also recruit local chapters and even get recognized with the Local Recruitment of Chapters Award. Here are some ways that your chapter can start building bridges to other local chapters:
- Get in contact with local unchartered chapters: Email and get in touch with local schools that don’t have a chapter at all. Try to get in touch with their CTSO program and offer your help to start a FBLA chapter.
- Reactivate deactivated chapters: Email and get in contact with recently deactivated chapters. Try to understand the reasons the chapter was deactivated and help alleviate the problem. For example, if interest declined, offer to send members over to help develop the local interest. Or if an adviser left, try emailing other teachers in the CTSO program to see if they are available to sponsor the chapter.
- How to get chapters started: When you have 5 members, you should email Monty Rhodes. He will walk you through the process of contacting the national office , submitting a Chapter Request Form, and accessing the Georgia FBLA Chapter Management LiveBinder. Once the national office receives your contact information, you will receive a charter number and password and you will be able to add anyone you have recruited!
Don’t miss your time to shine this year by helping local schools charter or reactivate local chapters in your area! From the Chapter Planning Guide, the Local Recruitment of Chapters Award “recognizes chapters that charter or reactivate FBLA and Middle-Level chapters.” By receiving this award, you’ll be awarded at all of our conferences. Here are some ways you can get local schools excited about FBLA:
- Visit local middle schools and get them excited about the competitions, networking opportunities, and community service work FBLA does. It’s proven that students involved at the middle level thrive in high school.
- Check the Georgia CTSO website for schools that have recently deactivated chapters and find ways you can help reactivate and partner with those schools.
- Charter a chapter! You can read more about the benefits and how to charter by checking out this article on starting a chapter.
We would also like to take this time and recognize our newly charter and reactivated chapters:
- DeKalb Early College Academy
- Discovery High School
- Forrest Hill Academy
- Westminster School of Augusta
- Greenville Middle School
- Manchester Middle School
- Paul D. West Middle School
- Central Gwinnett High School
- Forsyth Central High School
- Grovetown High School
- Harrison High School
- Jackson County High School
- Lakeside High School – Evans
- McIntosh County Academy
- Norcross High School
- Quitman County High School
- River Ridge High School
- Starr’s Mill High School
- T.W. Josey High School
- The Walker School
- Awtrey Middle School
- Bear Creek Middle School
- Bleckley County Middle School
- Clements Middle School
- Clifton Ridge Middle School
- Cook Middle School
- G.P. Babb Middle School
- J.P. McConnell Middle School
- Langford Middle School
- Lost Mountain Middle School
- Radium Springs Middle School
- Sonoraville Middle School
In addition to recruiting chapter members, be sure to involve your community and business leaders by recruiting them as professional division members! Anyone who supports FBLA can join – parents, teachers, advisers, local business owners. These members are an essential element to a successful chapter. They can help members learn more about the business world by sharing their experiences and providing advice. Professional division members can also assist in competitive event preparation by judging and critiquing presentations, practice mock interviews, and just sharing knowledge on subjects they are familiar with.
To recruit a professional division member, share the benefits of joining. Not only will he/she help your chapter succeed, but the member will also have the opportunity to take advantage of discounts included in their membership. Members will receive perks and discounts from everywhere ranging from Amazon to Uber. Dues are $25. Go to the National website to learn more about the Professional Division to view the membership application.