by Matt Mattson
We often get e-mails for phone calls asking for great rush event ideas. We're
never thrilled about these conversations because rush events don't normally
drive the results that chapters want, but we’ll help in any way we can.
First, if you're interested in improving your “rush week” this upcoming semester,
be sure to check out these previous blog posts"
Here's one about improving “Formal Recruitment:”
Here's one about “Small Activities:”
Here's one with “10 Tips for Immediate, Short-Term Recruitment Results:”
We recently received an E-mail from a chapter leader from a small school in
Illinois. Here is what he asked:
“I was elected the new membership recruitment chair for my fraternity. I am having a little trouble coming up with ideas for our rush week, and I was wondering if you had any fun ideas. Our rush week lasts from Sunday to Thursday.
So far I have:
Sunday - tour of the house/meet and greet
Monday - casino night and pizza
Tuesday - 2 lane bungee course and wings
Wednesday - ???
Thursday - Brotherhood night (we have candles set up, and we have the recruits sit on the couches and stuff, and the actives take turns talking about why they joined, and some good stories)
My problem is for Wednesday night. Last year we had
XXXXXXX [DELETED FOR LIABILITY REASONS]XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX.
I was wondering if you could help with a fun idea we could pull off inside of the house. Or if you had any other resources that I could use (i.e. websites).”
Here was Josh Orendi's (CEO and co-founder of Phired Up) response:
Thanks for the question. As you probably remember, I'm not a big fan of Rush events. In fact, I pretty much think they're only good for desperate chapters to find a few last minute strangers to initiate.
Stepping off my soapbox, I know you have good intentions and I'm sure you want a straight answer rather than a fluffy speech. Here are a few options:
1. Look at the discussion board of the Facebook group “recruitment ideas & success stories.” There are several ideas posted that work really well for other chapters.
2. Theme your events based on your fraternity's core values. This makes them easier to talk about and differentiates your chapter from other fraternities. (e.g. Service night, scholarship dinner, sports activity, social event, cultural outing, etc)
3. Consider an alumni night for potential members to highlight the lifelong commitment of membership. You might even invite a HQ rep to talk about how your brotherhood spans coast to coast.
4. Remember that the focus must be on building individual relationships. Consider activities that require small teams, and be sure to mix the teams with brothers and prospects.
5. Your brothers from other chapters and national staff are a great resource. Pick up the phone tomorrow and ask them what the fraternity's most successful groups do that might work best for you.
Best of luck!