There is No “National Way” of Recruiting
The last year has provided sororities with the unique opportunity to reevaluate how we gather, why we exist and what value our experience adds to members’ lives. Recruitment is no exception.
Virtual recruitment proved that authenticity and connection outperform pretty parties and seamless transitions – so let’s learn from the last year, get creative and focus on recruiting using authenticity and connection!
Why tell a potential new member about our sisterhood when we could show her our sisterhood? To feature sisterhood throughout formal recruitment or continuous open bidding (COB) think about what chapter members actually do that demonstrates sisterhood.
I recently had a conversation with the VP of PR & recruitment at the Beta Beta Chapter at the University of Northern Colorado. Through the recruitment planning process, I continually asked her what was special about their sisterhood and what truly represented their everyday membership experience. After a while, she mentioned the chapter often created forts in their chapter space to watch movies together. By knowing that about the chapter, it was then suggested they set up a fort and host Disney movie trivia with potential new members (PNMs) during their sisterhood round of recruitment.
Ideas as seemingly crazy as this are often met with “can we do that?” and “that’s not recruitment!” But here is the truth – if the chapter hosts an event that truly represents their sisterhood experience and a potential new member does not like it, she would not like being a member, and that is okay. The recruitment process is about the potential new member finding where she fits in best. This is why it is best to be honest with her about the chapter member experience!
- If you were to find a group of members on a random night, what would they be doing? What is the purpose of that activity and how can you incorporate it into recruitment planning?
- What do you love about your chapter experience? How can you show potential new members this in recruitment? Don’t just say it, show it!
The root of recruitment is finding people and building connections. In recruitment, potential new members want to find a group of people that make them feel welcomed and loved. They want to be able to see themselves as a sister – not just today, but forever.
The idea of a “recruitment-specific” conversation begins to put our members and the topics they discuss in a box. It is important for our members to feel confident having these conversations, which means we have to practice having these conversations! Practicing recruitment conversations should mean practicing human conversations. This does not mean role-playing as a PNM and AΣA, it means getting to know our sisters in deeper, more meaningful ways.
- Do our members know how to have conversations with people they have just met? How can we provide this kind of practice to our members before recruitment?
- How does your social media presence show the connections between sisters?
RECRUITMENT PLANNING MUST-DOS
- Review all recruitment-related national policies and procedures, then teach your members!
All chapters are expected to follow the national membership selection procedure and procedure for RFM (release figure methodology). If you have questions about this expectation, contact your region recruitment leader.
- Put yourself in the shoes of the potential new member.
Do you remember approaching the sorority houses during primary recruitment or attending a COB event alone? It can be overwhelming and nerve-wracking. Throughout all your recruitment planning, consider the viewpoint and interpretation of the potential new member. Make any accommodation you need to make recruitment an enjoyable and worthwhile experience for the potential new members.
Now, it’s time to start planning! Use your resources to begin creating your recruitment plan and submit it to Officer Portal. Then, work with your region recruitment leader to get your recruitment plan approved.