Members leave or choose not to re-join clubs for various reasons. So you are well informed to act on this as quickly and positively as possible, it is important to identify why this is happening.

Some clubs lose around 50% of their memberships each year. Previously these gaps were filled with new members, but new levels of competition have made gaining and retaining members harder than ever. This has been a key issue for clubs for a long time. The best clubs are already on the road to beating their retention issues – by using a Member Exit Process – but many still struggle.

Conducting a Member Exit Process should be a positive experience. The survey can be conducted in a number of ways: in person, over the telephone, by email or via post. Evidence suggests that you do this in person or by telephone as this is your opportunity to show the member that you take their resignation seriously and you care about why they have made the decision. All responses should remain confidential and should be used to help improve the overall experience for your members.

When a member resigns, do not delete them from your mailing list unless they are no longer a valid member prospect (e.g. passed away or left the area of residence) or if they indicate that they would like no further correspondence. Plan a date when you will attempt to re-activate (approximately six months after resignation) the lapsed member with a “we want you back” email or letter followed by a personal telephone call.

Remember to let them know what has changed since they left so they can see you have made improvements.

More information

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