Saturday, July 12, 2008

Committees: Using Open Calls

Tried an open call for a committee meeting where everyone in membership was informed they were welcome to participate - and given the date, time and location. Got a very knowledgeable group who made excellent recommendations; and participants included those we would not have thought to invite. However, it was a really small group.

If we ask 10 specific people to participate in a live meeting, typically about 8 are able to do it. If we openly invite 4700 we get less than that? Although I'm not sure if we had invited 10 specific people if they would have done a better job than the ones who self-identified for participation.

If you've tried it, did you get similar or different results?

1 comment:

ljunker said...

I was actually just proofreading an article for the August issue of Associations Now that talks about this very issue. The article is based on the forthcoming book Decision to Volunteer; according to that study, the majority of association volunteers surveyed who remembered how they become involved specifically remembered a direct invitation (from another volunteer, from a staff member, etc.). Very few remembered becoming involved through a more general call to the membership.

The article will be online on our website on August 1 (and of course you'll have the print copy shortly after August 1). I'd be happy to send you an advance copy of the story if you'd like to see it sooner, though. If you would, just let me know.