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Story By nitesh joshi

Rotary GB&I Chair-Elect, Nitesh Joshi outlines how the North Star project is ​going to have a big impact on Rotary in these isles.

Our great organisation has to adapt now to keep up with the vast changes ​happening in wider society. While becoming recognised as a Regional Pilot by ​Rotary International has been a boost, our new regional governance ​arrangements were a home-grown initiative.

Our strategic Regional Board can consider and implement long-term plans; much ​as you’ll find in big business. We finally have a five-year strategic plan and ​through continuity the Board intend to see that through. After all, it’s not a ​coincidence that North Star is a five-year vision.

Projects are considered through small working groups that include specific skills ​available in the wider membership. Membership Growth and Experience sees a ​positive experience starting with that initial enquiry and continuing by fulfilling ​their desire to give something back to society through Rotary. The ​Communications Workstream is streamlining many aspects of online ​information, administration and messaging, for members and the general public.

Learning and Development is reviewing the whole facilitated learning ​programme. Also, by locally supplementing the materials on the RI Learning ​Centre, we have an opportunity to get accreditation and be recognised for the ​skills we can offer potential future leaders in business, as much as within Rotary.

north star

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logging into the rotary gb&I members area

Organisational Effectiveness encompasses cluster development, financial ​stability through different approaches as much as cost efficiency, and the ​complex legal plan for Incorporated status. Specialist Advisors have a greater ​GB&I regional focus and work collaboratively with the Support Centre.

Becoming one of two Regional Pilot areas, also brought the potential for RI ​investment; supporting their Regional Adaptability pilots. Getting RI funding was ​a successful yet bumpy ride, much as with any business investment. Detailed ​tasks are linked to the Action Plan and our Workstream outputs, with KPI’s to ​monitor progress.

North Star grew from needing a sound funding case, yet it is more a vision to ​truly grow our membership to 60,000 by 2028; through an expansion of business ​as usual, including new routes to membership, and projects to modernise the ​organisation and make it more appealing to modern society.

We are now into the operational phase of implementing the North Star whole ​and sharing the vision with district teams and your clubs. This is complementary ​to, not instead of, the ongoing work of the Specialist Advisor teams, Support ​Centre and very much the districts. It is now for each of you to help translate the ​ambitious vision into a successful reality.

Our New Membership ​Channels

Before explaining the new membership channels we have let’s consider Rotary ​GB&I to be an engine with one piston firing – consider this is our traditional club ​membership piston which until now has only been our effective channel for ​attracting new members into Rotary. This piston has been firing since Rotary ​started and over the years has become tired and less effective.

A few years ago Direct Membership was announced which is our ubiquitous 24 x ​7 membership channel where members join online and after payment and ​induction join our Direct Members’ community. Here they communicate virtually ​and participate in active service projects. Direct Membership is the second piston ​for our engine and with over 400 current members it is taking some of the load ​off piston one.

Corporate Membership is our new 3rd Membership channel where clubs invite ​local businesses in their area to become members. Local estate agents, health ​clubs, schools and even your club venue can become potential members joining ​your club. Corporate members bring diversity, business experience and varying ​backgrounds into Rotary to help sprout new ideas and re-ignite projects. Our 3rd ​piston is helping to carry our membership load along with the other two - each ​piston directly contributing to membership.

A group of three Rotary members plan a project by arranging sticky notes on a glass wall.

Rotary means business with new ​Enterprise Membership model

All of the above routes to membership permit one new member to join at a time.

Enterprise Membership is our new exciting 4th route into Rotary GB&I and allows ​us to attract large businesses with more than 100 employees to join at once. ​Enterprise clients benefit from working with Rotary using our branding, setting ​up customised “volunteer” / “impact” days and measuring their employees’ ​volunteer hours.

Enterprise clients are also able to fulfil their environmental and sustainability ​responsibilities as well as benefitting from advanced leadership and ​development training provided to their employees by Rotary and the online ​learning centre.

The newly formed Enterprise team at our support centre will support and find ​Enterprise clients.

With 4 pistons firing and Enterprise able to recruit 100-1000 members at once ​our North Star goal becomes more achievable.

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