by Matt Mattson
Still — nearly 10 years into doing this Phired Up work — the number one question we get from college student organization leaders continues to be, “How do I motivate my members to recruit?” We’ve answered this in a number of ways — our Horse/Mule analogy being the most common response. But we’re always on the lookout for further advice to offer. And we found some recently.
Our friend, and fellow collegiate speaker, T.J. Sullivan recently released a book called, “Motivating the Middle.” In under 65 pages, this short, quick, easy-to-understand book provides practical, specific, actionable recommendations for college student leaders to fight apathy in their organizations. The book focuses student leaders on the middle 1/3 of their organization who often get completely ignored.
Our primary advice holds true — don’t ask, “How do I motivate my members to recruit?” Instead ask, “How do I recruit with my motivated members?” However, as T. J. reminds us, there is probably a large contingent of your organization that are actually motivated members, but they feel left out, ignored, or otherwise invisible in the constant battle between the Stallions of the organization and the Jackasses. These “middle” members might not be the thoroughbreds that you are, but they can be very important workhorses if you saddle them up and give them a path to ride on.
T.J. and I will be speaking at the same school this week (Washington State University), so I thought this might be a great time to strongly recommend that organizational leaders read his new book. Enjoy!