Every club will experience cycles in membership. Here is an explanation from the Toastmasters Manual “How to Rebuild a Toastmasters Club“:
The first phase in a club’s life occurs during and just after it is organized. The club’s educational program is
expanding and improving. The members are motivated and their enthusiasm generally makes up for their lack
of experience. As the educational program improves, productivity increases and the club moves toward the
peak of the curve.
As the club matures into the second phase, the educational program reaches a high level of productivity and
successfully meets members’ needs. The original club members are now relatively experienced Toastmasters.
New members join the club and quickly become assimilated into the club’s culture. The length of time spent
at the top of the curve varies from club to club.
At the beginning of the third phase, members become content with the status quo and resist change and
new influences. Guests are greeted, but the club’s internal cliques are sometimes difficult to break into. New
members have a hard time fitting in and don’t stay long. Productivity declines, and the club slips from the top
of the curve and begins a downward slide. Attendance drops, the educational program falls apart, and guests
do not join the club. Members may be more concerned with socializing than learning.
If the club continues its downward slide and nears the bottom of the curve, something must to be done
to keep the club from dissolving. In many cases a club coach is appointed to help the members revitalize their
club. If the effort is successful, the club’s productivity will increase, and a new life cycle will begin.
When a club is declining in membership, there are some steps that can be taken by the membership to begin a new upswing in the club.
One of those steps, is to revitalize participation in the education program. An active club committed to quality education can readily turn visitors into members.
Your club may have already done that, and now you need more visitors in order to rebuild membership. This page is intended to provide you with some ideas and resources to help you bring more visitors to your club.
- The most effective way to gain visitors is through personal invitations. Speak with people you know, and people you meet, and invite them to your club. If you are giving a speech, invite your friends to come see your speech. If you are the Toastmaster for a meeting, and are doing something special as the theme of the meeting, invite people you know to enjoy the event.
- Make it easy for prospects to find and visit your meeting. If you are meeting in a physical location, make sure the directions are specific enough for prospects to find your meeting. If you are meeting online, make it easy for prospects to get the information needed to join the meeting.
- Someone in your club (perhaps the Vice President of Membership) should conduct the Toastmasters module Moments of Truth at least once per year. If no one in your club feels ready to conduct the module, you can ask your Area Director to present it at a special club meeting.
- If your club has 12 or fewer members, request a Club Coach to help your club with new ideas and added excitement. Get approval from your club to request a club coach, then the club President can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org requesting that a Club Coach be assigned.
- Previous prospects, guests and members are always a good resource for building membership. For any Open House event, be sure to include the “previous” in the outreach.
Your Area Director can be a great source of contacts and information to help you find more ways to build your club membership.
Meeting Optimization Support Team (MOST)
- Beginning in December 2021 District 7 introduced a new team, the Meeting Optimization Support Team (MOST) is designed to help struggling clubs build successfully. Click here for details.
Thank you to Toastmasters District 55 for provided a listing of available Club Growth Resources.
- How to Build a Toastmasters Club – Manual
- How to Sponsor a New Club – Manual
- How to Sponsor a New Club – Presentation
- New Club Mentoring Matters – Presentation
- How To Rebuild A Toastmasters Club
- The First Class Club Coach – Manual
- The First Class Club Coach – Presentation
- Leading the Club to Success – Manual
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