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3 Strategies for Improving Your Recruitment Performance

1. Plan Your Recruitment

You may be in the midst of recruitment, or perhaps a few weeks away, but it is never too late to get things set up. The sooner we can gather the information needed to understand how recruitment works, the more prepared we will be to execute the best recruitment season possible. 


Make sure to fully grasp your institution’s recruitment plan from either your Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life or the IFC. Recruitment this year will most likely be completely different than the 2020-2021 academic year and you cannot expect the same gameplan to work in this new environment. Health & safety protocols will also be important to understand. Discover and understand your school’s and IFC’s health and safety protocols & initiatives. Get re-acclimated with your Sigma Nu resources, specifically the Recruitment Chairman Manual and the Recruitment Bluebook. (Password: 4242)

Get Members Involved

Make sure your chapter is aware of expectations before recruitment begins so members can clear their calendars and know what they are responsible for and where they need to be.

Lean on Your Alumni and Leadership Consultant

Understand that you are never alone. Your advisors and the General Fraternity are always available to provide assistance with recruitment and other areas of chapter operation.

Maximize Your Budget

Create a recruitment budget that meets needs and eliminates unnecessary costs. Identify large costs from the past and create options to reduce/eliminate waste. Consider event restrictions to avoid over-budgeting for food, etc. Utilize outdoor events (if possible) to reduce costs from facility rentals. Have your recruitment budget passed ASAP to ensure you have the financial resources needed as soon as your recruitment events begin to take place.

2. Be Unique

Recruitment is all about growth. Whether we expect to pick up 30 candidates or 7, the only way we can excel in our recruitment goals is to grow from our old ways of recruiting. If we have struggled in recruiting or perhaps struggled to recruit high-quality men in the past, then we cannot afford to repeat the same mistakes. We must challenge ourselves to dig deeper and recruit smarter, not necessarily harder.

How are We Being Unique?

Are we hosting the same event(s) that every other chapter is hosting on campus? If we are hosting a poker night the same night two other fraternities are hosting a poker night, how are we sticking out in the crowd? Create events and tactics in recruitment that make you unique, that no one else on campus is hosting, that are safe, appealing, and that reflect your chapter’s strengths and values. A few unique ideas can include:

  1. Meet and greet, then bring a guest speaker for a LEAD Session
  2. Going to a school event other than a football or basketball game
  3. Hosting an alumni speaker panel
  4. Hosting a prospective new member (PNM) Parent Call co-hosted with your advisor
  5. Large House Tour (if applicable) and each room of the house has a theme to highlight strengths of the chapter

Don't Always Think Big

If we only rely on big events when we recruit, we only give ourselves a small, insignificant amount of time with each PNM at the event to get a good idea of what he has to offer, if he can pay our dues, and if he aligns with our values. Set up small gatherings at your chapter house, on campus, or at local restaurants to have more in-depth conversations. Use that time to get to know them more, answer their specific questions, and ask the quality questions that allow you to see if they are strong candidates. Smaller events can even lead to easier follow-up with PNMs. Taking small bites instead of big chunks helps you as the recruiter understand the big picture in a better way.

Be In Control with Your Relationships

Every single person that comes to our events must have their own individualized line of communication with the chapter, whether it be with you, your committee, or a general member. When a PNM gives you his number either on a sign-in sheet at an event or just from talking to him on campus, that is him telling you he wants to learn more. After an event, you and your members can debrief on how the event went and then reach out to each attendee to A). thank them for coming and B). have a follow-up on the next time to get together. You are always in control of knowing people will show up instead of hoping people will show up.

3. Recruit With Your Values

Selling Points/ Our "Why"

Your chapter must take a deep, DEEP dive into why you exist, why your membership matters, and why a potential new member you speak to should care about joining. These answers are your selling points. If you as a chapter cannot enthusiastically express why your chapter is great, then you cannot expect to receive great members. A great video to watch on the concept of expressing your “why” is Simon Sinek’s Golden Circle.

Delegating Responsibility

The Recruitment Chairman is not the only recruiter. He also does not have to be the best recruiter. Delegation during recruitment is extremely crucial to cover as much ground as possible during a time that has so many people coming in and out of our doors. The Recruitment Chairman can be thought of more as a manager instead of the person that has to do everything if he delegates tasks well with his committee. Think of effective incentives and not just punishment systems to get your general members motivated to help. Recruitment is always “all-hands on deck”, so enabling them to do so will allow your members to understand that.

Be Memorable

When speaking to PNMs, remember when you were in their shoes. Potential new members can have very repetitive conversations with each chapter they meet, and if we are offering the same conversations as other chapters, we aren’t being memorable. Instead of asking where they are from or what their major is, ask them: “tell me something cool about your hometown” or “why did you choose to come to ___ University?”. Always ask open-ended questions. That way, you can get a better interpretation of how they think, their interests, and if their answers reflect strong values.

© 2015-2022 Sigma Nu Fraternity, Inc.
9 North Lewis Street, P.O. Box 1869, Lexington, Virginia 24450
Phone: (540) 463-1869 | Fax: (540) 463-1669 | Email: headquarters@sigmanu.org

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