By Michael Bucca, past president of the Rotary Club of Central Ocean – Toms River, New Jersey, USA
Passion is infectious, and that couldn’t be more true about Rotary!
I spent a wonderful year of my life leading a great group of people. I say it because I really mean it. The joy and pleasure that being president of my club brought to me is immeasurable. It caused Rotary to become a part of who I am forever.
This deep belief about Rotary had an incredible side effect, the members started feeling that way too!
Our club members believe the club is doing well. Our members believe they have a purpose in the club and in Rotary. They also believe they are a part of a worldwide organization, not just a sleepy lunch meeting in town. They have made Rotary a part of who they are.
I’m not talking Kool-Aid drinking, corporate yes people either. I am talking about people who live the ideals of Rotary and try their best to contribute. Members who give it their all to get new members, increase the club’s visibility, and make a difference in the community.
The results were incredible: a 260 percent increase in Foundation giving, a 23 percent increase in membership, a 9 percent increase in fundraising. Plus, an unknown, huge percentage increase in community visibility. The best result: a vibrant and fun meeting that I wish could be bottled up and shipped in a package to any organization that wanted such a culture.
Reflecting on my presidency, I now understand that this belief system starts with the club’s leader. If you believe in Rotary and talk about it with passion and vigor, your members are going to do the same thing.
While you’re president, to the members of your club, you are Rotary!