by Marianne Schofield, Director of First Impressions, The Ford Plantation, Richmond Hill, GA
As I reflect on the theme of building service culture for this month's issue of Club Membership & Marketing Magazine, I think of the three skills all membership professionals must possess:
If you continually develop and nurture these essential skills, you will be able to serve your club well and thrive professionally.
It is not enough for today’s membership professionals to just be paper pushers reacting to inquiries—we must be leaders in our organizations and actively seek to provide guidance to our department, general manager, board, and colleagues.
As membership professionals, we must have clear goals, and we must be comfortable sharing those goals. In fact, one of the most important jobs of a leader is to repeat the organization’s goals over and over.
Imagine the famous painting of George Washington crossing the Delaware—he is standing tall and proud, facing the direction they are headed, while the people in the boat are focusing on the task at hand—frantically rowing to get them where they are going. General Washington must keep his eye on the target, tell his men where they are going, and provide them with course corrections as they row. His whole-body language screams, “We are going HERE—follow me!”
This is the type of leader membership professionals must be in our organizations. We must set goals in concrete terms and provide continual guidance on how to reach them. We should be able to reduce our goals to a soundbite and use that soundbite consistently.
At The Ford Plantation, the number one goal of our entire team is sales. Ask any of my colleagues what business we are in, and you will get the answer, “The sales business.” I remind everyone of this goal during team meetings, in casual conversations, and in emails. Everyone knows the goal, and we row together, like George Washington’s team, to reach it.