5 convos new

The 5 Conversations of Fraternity Recruitment

100% of recruitment happens during conversations. Yet most of our members couldn’t hold a conversation if it came with a handle. Practice these five conversations and be prepared with the core skills necessary for recruitment excellence.

1. The Meeting: “Hi, I’m Matt. Nice to meet you!” You can’t recruit who you don’t know. Meeting new people and making a positive, warm, engaging first impression is the first of the five recruitment conversations. To be successful at this conversation, you must achieve three objectives: 1) a welcoming first impression (use your Social Excellence training), 2) exchanging names and contact information, and 3) identifying a reason to meet up again soon.

2. The Invite: {RING RING} “Carlos! This is Matt. We met yesterday at the hot dog stand. Hey I have a quick question for you, do you have 2 minutes right now? Cool. Me and some guys play pick-up football on the IM fields every Tuesday and Thursday, and we’re trying to get a big game together this week. We play around 4 p.m. Which of those days might work best for you? Awesome! We’d love to have you out on Thursday then. I’ll text you to remind you, but we’ll be planning on you playing. See you then.”

3. The Friending: This conversation happens in myriad places and multiple times. It happens at small activities, events, over coffee or lunch, at parties, in hallways and on sidewalks, at one-on-one meetings, etc. There are three phases.

Phase 1) Getting to know each other — this is the phase where we’re just talking about regular stuff. Learning about one another. Being curious, generous, authentic, and vulnerable. Connecting. Caring.

Phase 2) You ask, “So, what do you know about Alpha Beta Gamma?” Listen closely. Affirm his perspective.

Phase 3) Only engage in phase 3 when he’s asked about the fraternity… “Thanks for asking. Our fraternity is something I’m really proud to be a part of. Can I tell you a story?” Complete phase three with a personal story that illustrates the benefits of membership (see here for more info). Another approach to Phase 3 is called, “Inception” (here’s a secret video to help you out).

Repeat “The Friending” conversation until you know enough about him to determine his qualification for membership (this might require a formal interview), and until he knows enough about the fraternity that he’s showing genuine interest in joining.

4. The Pre-Close: We’ve written and taught about this conversation extensively. Here’s the related Free Resource for fraternities. This conversation happens AFTER the chapter has determined the candidate’s qualifications for membership using a Values-Based Selection Criteria. The key question is, “If we were to ask you to join, what would you say?” Validate any concerns that arise. Isolate each concern to deal with independently. Then address all concerns with “Quality Responses” in a time frame that you’ve agreed upon.

5. The Close: This is the final recruitment conversation. A strong close most importantly requires a clear ask. “Will you join us?” Most of the best chapters close the deal with a formal “bid card” that must be signed to demonstrate commitment. Some go so far as to make a bold presentation (see “The Two Handshakes“). This conversation should be serious, uplifting, and representative of what it is — a life changing moment for the prospect and the chapter.

These are the five conversations that every great recruiter has practiced, prepared for, and mastered. This is what recruitment looks like. 100% of recruitment happens during these conversations.