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wyliefoxEsquire

Encouraging Participation

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Howdy,
I suspect our club is just like most clubs.
We have members who are able to move steel.
Members who are unable to move steel.
And Supermen who avoid steel (and any other task) as if it was Kryptonite.


Question, what has your club done regarding members who tend to show up, shoot then leave, and do not participate with  all the necessary tasks to run a monthly match?

I would like to hear comments from those who actually had this problem and how they solved this problem.

 


thanks, -wylie
 

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Setting up a match takes much longer than striking the match. Typically we only have 2-4 shooters that will help set up. Just about everyone will stay and tear down.

There are those that help and those that don't. Same as work, some do as little as possible to make 40 hours and then others are there early and work late. I would imagine it's the same folks in both situations. I still work and can't take time off to travel to other shoots for set up, I do help tear down when needed. Many clubs around here can leave their steel in place and only have a few things to put away after the match.

 

Considering there are only a couple guys/gals at each club that are truly dedicated today, many clubs are only a member or two from folding up. The lack of new membership is killing CAS and unfortunately a couple people at each club can't do everything and work on marketing too. The few younger guys that were coming out are no longer interested because they didn't renew their SASS memberships due to the $20 increase. Enjoy it while you can.

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This is something I think about every time.
Personally, I would feel like a heel if I did not help out as much as possible...stage 4 copd and I help set up the day before and tear down after the match. Im huffin and puffing but hopefully carrying my weight.

Theres some older guys, who, I know can't ..and I begrudge them nothing.
Theres the guys who TO and RO...they work the whole match far as Im concerned-I begrudge them not if they rest afterwards.
(Funny thing is-most of these guys even try and help)

Then, theres the guy who never helps set up....you'll see him cleaning his guns and putting them away the whole time during break down, first one to his truck with his cart...he might come strolling up at the last moment, when all is done, just to make a show.
Same guy who rarely shags brass, and I do mean rarely.

Didn't they have a name for these guys in the military..s***bird or something like that?

He makes multiple matches....always holds up the match asking questions on how to "game" the time a bit (can I go this way or that way to save a millisecond)
I have no respect for those types...

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When complaining about others, just remember there is only one person you can change - You.

 

In any sport or other activity including work, there are people who do all, or most of the work and those who don’t do anything.  In spite of the initial reaction that “we don’t need that kind of person”, I’d say that we do need all the people we can get.  I’m not making excuses for the folks who don’t “work” at matches.  As a former Match Director, I experienced the same frustrations with people who came, shot and went home without helping.

 

BUT, we are not going to change them.  They are most likely that way in their work life, home life and everything else.  Just welcome them to the match and be glad there are a lot of folks there.  There are always going to be a certain percentage of people in both the work and non work categories.  Think positive, with more people at the match, you’ll have more in BOTH categories.

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We tear down as we go.  If we have one posse or three, it doesn't matter.  Once all posses have shot the stage, it's gets torn down.  From carpet pads to steel targets, there's something that everyone can help with.

As for set up, if you show up on the workday and help out, you can shoot for 1/2 price.  We have wooden nickels that are equivalent to $5 that can also be redeemed to reduce match fees.  We use them for larger work parties like when we work on the state match.  We got away from using them for a while but are going back to it.  I'm just trying to figure out exactly how to handle those that arrive late when almost all the work is done.  :unsure:

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I think we all need to participate, whether physically or financially.  And know your place in that line.  Some guys can't wait to run around and throw steel, and others (some with past injuries they don't care to talk about) cringe at the thought.  But if you ain't lifting, you damn well better be doing something, even if it is bringing coffee or donuts, or 'yer wife's brownies. 

 

Be a "+1" to everything you do and are.

 

A little bit of "shaming" also can go a long way.  Must be used judiciously. of course, but someone near the said individual may say something like: "Hey, XXXX, can you give me a hand with this...?"  Or "Hey XXXX, we need your hands for moving this table!"  My experience is some people will do whatever they can to get away with the least (and some days even I've been guilty off it.  We've all had some bad days, and I've had some terrible ones). 

 

But when pushed, they will generally fold and help out of shame.  And the more times you push 'em, the more natural.  I've had work experiences where I once told a boss about how I would handle the laziest one in the group: "If I can just get 10-20% more out of him, I will consider myself a success."

He laughed, shook his head and said "And you'd be right..."

 

We even have a saying "If you're late, you're bringing the donuts!"

 

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It's tough to get help when you have people shooting matches every weekend at different clubs and only aligned with one or maybe none as a worker. I know some will work as an R.O. and feel that they have "worked" for the match. That should be the minimum you put in. I know not everyone is qualified to run a timer, not everyone can tote steel... but you CAN do something. Do we want the non-workers to quit coming? No, we don't, we just want a little effort. The few who work very hard to set-up, run and tear down a match get burned out and stop doing it... seen it. We all enjoy the shooting; pitch in and help, even a little, and it will make it easier (and more enjoyable) for all involved.

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Just want to throw my 2 cents in. I am also still working and can never make it to setup due to my work schedule. I do help tear down, but a back injury frequently twinges me. I do my best to help with anything I can lift. Having said that, I have been spoken to rudely by some other shooters because of my physical restraints. I love the Game and the Cowboy Way, but sometimes it is others that make things miserable for those of us with physical restraints. People get very serious about CAS and sometimes forget about being "nice"!

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Guest Texas jack Black SASS#9362
8 hours ago, Assassin said:

Setting up a match takes much longer than striking the match. Typically we only have 2-4 shooters that will help set up. Just about everyone will stay and tear down.

There are those that help and those that don't. Same as work, some do as little as possible to make 40 hours and then others are there early and work late. I would imagine it's the same folks in both situations. I still work and can't take time off to travel to other shoots for set up, I do help tear down when needed. Many clubs around here can leave their steel in place and only have a few things to put away after the match.

 

Considering there are only a couple guys/gals at each club that are truly dedicated today, many clubs are only a member or two from folding up. The lack of new membership is killing CAS and unfortunately a couple people at each club can't do everything and work on marketing too. The few younger guys that were coming out are no longer interested because they didn't renew their SASS memberships due to the $20 increase. Enjoy it while you can.

 

 

  I brought all this up 15 yrs ago and was Bashed into just watching this all unwind . SAD:(:FlagAm:

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Any help setting up a match is good help.  If you can't pick up the steel you can still un-coil and clip on the reset ropes for the shotgun targets or roll out a towel  on the shooting tables. 

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Guest Texas jack Black SASS#9362

 This has been beaten to death for the last 15 yrs.:(

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Guest Texas jack Black SASS#9362
50 minutes ago, David Balthazar said:

I think we all need to participate, whether physically or financially.  And know your place in that line.  Some guys can't wait to run around and throw steel, and others (some with past injuries they don't care to talk about) cringe at the thought.  But if you ain't lifting, you damn well better be doing something, even if it is bringing coffee or donuts, or 'yer wife's brownies. 

 

Be a "+1" to everything you do and are.

 

A little bit of "shaming" also can go a long way.  Must be used judiciously. of course, but someone near the said individual may say something like: "Hey, XXXX, can you give me a hand with this...?"  Or "Hey XXXX, we need your hands for moving this table!"  My experience is some people will do whatever they can to get away with the least (and some days even I've been guilty off it.  We've all had some bad days, and I've had some terrible ones). 

 

But when pushed, they will generally fold and help out of shame.  And the more times you push 'em, the more natural.  I've had work experiences where I once told a boss about how I would handle the laziest one in the group: "If I can just get 10-20% more out of him, I will consider myself a success."

He laughed, shook his head and said "And you'd be right..."

 

We even have a saying "If you're late, you're bringing the donuts!"

 

 

 Shaming an  adult into anything is not a good idea IMHO and would only drive shooters away.:o

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I guess I'm lucky. I send out an email each spring to all of the members of our sportsmen's club asking for volunteers to join the Cowboy Committee at the club, and to help set up and tear down the stages each month for the CAS shoot. I usually get 10 members who volunteer to serve on the committee. Now 90% of these folks don't even participate in our sport. Each month I send out an email asking for help setting up on Saturday, and tearing down on Sunday. I usually have 4 committee people to help each of the days every month. They all have a standing invitation to try shooting a stage after the match. All I need from the cowboy shooters is to help with the usual stage duties.

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Complete Green horn here to SASS but I do shoot with another club in another discipline and our club has the same issues.  We have those that show up to shoot and leave before stuff is tore down. 
We do two things to help promote participation and support of the club and also identify the problem children and try to correct them or at least figure out their situation. 
1.  Identify the givers and publicly recognize them, these people get a discount on match fees and they also get other percs like being invited to shoot with certain people at certain places. There is also gifts of brass and ammo or shooting free. we take care of our guys that take care of us.

 
2. Identify the non hackers, the show up shoot and leave crowd, or the worse yet, the show up shoot and sit around and watch you work crowd, Oh and this usually goes with them boasting about their new gun that they have so much money tied up in. We Identify these guys and they get no slack, no discount, they are placed low on the priority list, they will be placed lower on the list for a paid target puller. they will get positioned on the firing line at the not so good spots. they don't get invited to the special shoots, they don't get invited to the special deals that some shops offer us in terms of gunsmith work or other perks like that. These guys tend to weed them selves out. they either get with the program or they don't come back. and that all their decision. 

We did have one guy try to publicly defame our club and how he was not treated the way he felt he should have been. He was called out for showing up shooting and leaving. No work party attendance, no real support of the club. He quieted down after that.

 

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It's been my experience that it's much better to have 3-4 good workers than 10 that don't know what's going on and want to joke around rather than set up. Devise a plan for your helpers and work smart not hard. Everyone is good at something, those that can't carry heavy stuff can paint targets, set out trash buckets, or take care of other light weight things. I know it's difficult when you're used to being the boss at work, remember your helpers are volunteers, not employees, don't spout off a bunch of orders. Ask people nicely and thank them for the help. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Interesting read.

 

Many different personality types out there.

 

If you think about it, you see these same types at large family gatherings, at your workplace, at other club (not just gun club) events. So this is not just a CAS concern. I am sure history is replete with these types.

 

I think "encouraging" would go over better than shaming.

 

Was on a team once with 2 other guys. One worked constantly to find a shortcut or avoid the task altogether. This drove the other guy nuts, who was a good participant. I reminded him that our work "avoider" has been like this for years. Did you really think he would change after being put on our team? Instead of making yourself sick over the slacker, take some pride in that you did your part to help the team.

 

 

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At the local clubs I shoot at we have experienced posse leaders who will specifically ask people to spot, pick-up brass, or work the unloading table.  I'm normally the guy doing the rule briefing and I make a point of talking about being a good worker.

 

I know that I and other experienced shooters who have introduced the sport to new shooters have emphasized being a good worker at the start as a way to gain acceptance and status in the group.  My wife didn't start shooting until years after I started, but now is a competent gunfighter and probably one of the best brass wranglers in SASS.  As older members have aged, they are not capable of doing heavy work, but anybody can work the unloading table or spot.  

 

Set-up days are a separate issue.  Those of us that are still working full time jobs can't make many of these days.  Normally there is a group of retired guys that take on this responsibility.  What has happened to us locally is that this a small group of guys and several of them have now reached the point were they can no longer move steel.  It's a real problem.

 

When I started, early on, I didn't have high regard for those shooters who finished the stage and sat down on their cart to have a smoke and BS with other slackers or moved on to the next stage to get ready to game the next stage.  Funny, recently, less of this group of people are smoking and more are playing on their smart phones.  

 

As an educator of 43 years, I know that shaming people, that aren't required to attend, is a sure way to run people off.  Positive comments, modeling good behavior, and humor often work better.  

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1 hour ago, Texas jack Black SASS#9362 said:

 

 Shaming an  adult into anything is not a good idea IMHO and would only drive shooters away.:o

Texas Jack, I used the word "shaming" and yes, while pejorative in tone--it is often necessary.   Let's just say it is my version of stronger encouragement, when you have an obtuse view of the world around you.  Also, my point was to drive in a way that, natural encouragement has failed, and recognizing the back-breakers has not stuck either.

 

Personally, I'd rather have a club of 10 dedicated then double in size full of people enjoying the fruits but at the other half's expense.  Now I am new to this, yes, but have been in/running/sponsoring club/event/etc. things like CAS damn near my whole life.  I have used this technique effectively on many mutual occasions.  It is also something that is best stated to new members so they know the score early on with club expectations.

 

And you should also know, allowing someone to CONSTANTLY just show up and leave first leaving everyone one else to eat their dust is not a good idea, and also drives shooters away.  What would happen if the first five folks who always set up and the last five who always take down at these shoots decided to NOT do it anymore?

 

How long would that club last?  In a small club, every member needs to bring something to the table

 

Not an attack here Texas Jack or others who disagree with me, just an organizational observation and a friendly "gut check" reminder to the grasshoppers among us who have already ignored the hints.  

 

We are all adults here, but it is my experience some adults still need routine course corrections.   IF this were not the case, this thread, nor my commentary, would be here.

 

YMMV :FlagAm:

 

 

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CAS. like Little League, Church work parties, pretty much any volunteer activity or game, 20% of members are going to do 80% of the work.  at my home club, I try to be in the 20%, although I'm not much of a steel toter.  At clubs that I shoot at often, but are too far for making work details I try, at least a couple of times a year, to make a donation to pay for lunch or refreshments or materials for the work party.  

 

As far as working at a match, I'm going to count, run the timer, shag brass or whatever.  occasionally, especially in the Texas summer, I need to sit out a stage, when that happens I try to at least work the ULT. or sit where I can count.  I have zero problem with shooters who its all they can do to just shoot.  but those that hide out at their cart and do nothing kinda irk me.  I recently shot at a match with a very good young shooter. He did not d a lick of posse work. I mean ZERO. Spent  his time checking his ammo, checking his guns, getting in the "zone".  Had I been PM, I think on the last stage I likely would have told the brass pickers to leave his brass on the ground.  

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1 hour ago, Poet Jones 99980 said:

Just want to throw my 2 cents in. I am also still working and can never make it to setup due to my work schedule. I do help tear down, but a back injury frequently twinges me. I do my best to help with anything I can lift. Having said that, I have been spoken to rudely by some other shooters because of my physical restraints. I love the Game and the Cowboy Way, but sometimes it is others that make things miserable for those of us with physical restraints. People get very serious about CAS and sometimes forget about being "nice"!

I’m sorry folks were disrespectful of your limitations, I agree that’s isn’t the Cowboy way. I’m in a similar boat with staying late and hauling heavy stuff, so I try to help with resetting targets, spotting misses, scoring (which I’m still learning), etc. I figure everyone can help out with some part of the match even if they aren’t hauling steel. 

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My home club hosts several different shooting disciplines.  Setup is a challenge because we can only access our shooting bays by closing the rifle range that 1000+ members have paid to use.  Sometimes the workers from one discipline will help another group set up for their match.

 

We simplified our setup/tear down by leaving shotgun targets and target stands in the bays rather than hauling them back and forth to the storage containers.

 

Teardown is usually not a problem.  Our Match Director leads by example both at our club and when shooting at other clubs.

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I try to make sure that Shootin Sharyn, the Iron Cowboy and I all assume a posse duty at the beginning of each stage.  With four of us shooting things need to be a bit choreographed to make sure we don't bunch up at the table or have other issues getting our stages in.  Kid Flash is too young for any posse duties right now so he pretty much 'shadow' spots to get used to spotting.  I don't want him handling dirty brass or messing with shotgun targets that have lead floating around them so I don't let him do that.  I also don't think he's ready for the responsibility of watching a table, though he thinks he is.  Once I've shot I generally take the timer back to run KF through, then pick up brass or reset targets.

 

At the end of the match I'm usually focused on getting our stuff wiped down and organized in the trunk.  Most of the time I can just about get everything put away before the awards start, but not always.  Last weekend the awards were well under way before we could get there.  If we stuck around for tear down we would have to just leave our stuff sitting by the car until after awards, which I don't want to do.  So, because of that I'm not as involved with tear down as I used to be.  I think my fellow cowboys understand. 

 

Back when I was an MD,  I was aware of who helped and didn't help with tear down.  Some have medical or other issues that prevented them from pitching in, and that was fine with me.  Some are just lazy or think that once they've paid their match fees they've done their part.   I never did anything about those cowboys, just had a little less respect for them than for those who are pulling their weight, and other's weight too.

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Deja vu from waaaay back!  We are not even just talking about the general range duties here either.  Come out to the range during the week when the grass is being cut and all the other needs of a neat clean place to shoot are being addressed, guess who you will find there.  Yes, it will be the same few who are making sure we have a match set up to shoot at on the weekends.  With all of our excuses as to why we do not have the time or wherewith to lift a finger on the day before, the day of or the day after and I'll assure you there are plenty of more reasons we can not do anything on those other four days a week also.  And we talk about the new generation of children we raise not having any sense of responsibility, they are watching you mommy and daddy, just like you probably watched your parents for an example!  WHOA way personal, Im sorry we should not say things that might hurt the feelings of those who are just here for the party and did not commit to the other stuff, you know, the dirty stuff!  Amazing that some who are so restricted can pick up all of those guns, ammo , carts and other personal needs to get here and play the game but not pick up a rod for which to hang a target from or drive a riding lawn mower at other times???           

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I'm newer and didn't really know what to expect when I started.  While watching another shooter I was handed the tools required to collect brass.  Another time I was asked to help reset targets between shooters.  Message received.  Is there a chance they're thicker than most and are oblivious?  Maybe just ask them to help.  Or better, just hand them stuff like my club did to me haha.

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Guest Texas jack Black SASS#9362
1 hour ago, David Balthazar said:

Texas Jack, I used the word "shaming" and yes, while pejorative in tone--it is often necessary.   Let's just say it is my version of stronger encouragement, when you have an obtuse view of the world around you.  Also, my point was to drive in a way that, natural encouragement has failed, and recognizing the back-breakers has not stuck either.

 

Personally, I'd rather have a club of 10 dedicated then double in size full of people enjoying the fruits but at the other half's expense.  Now I am new to this, yes, but have been in/running/sponsoring club/event/etc. things like CAS damn near my whole life.  I have used this technique effectively on many mutual occasions.  It is also something that is best stated to new members so they know the score early on with club expectations.

 

And you should also know, allowing someone to CONSTANTLY just show up and leave first leaving everyone one else to eat their dust is not a good idea, and also drives shooters away.  What would happen if the first five folks who always set up and the last five who always take down at these shoots decided to NOT do it anymore?

 

How long would that club last?  In a small club, every member needs to bring something to the table

 

Not an attack here Texas Jack or others who disagree with me, just an organizational observation and a friendly "gut check" reminder to the grasshoppers among us who have already ignored the hints.  

 

We are all adults here, but it is my experience some adults still need routine course corrections.   IF this were not the case, this thread, nor my commentary, would be here.

 

YMMV :FlagAm:

 

 

 

14 minutes ago, Slowhand Bob, 24229 said:

Deja vu from waaaay back!  We are not even just talking about the general range duties here either.  Come out to the range during the week when the grass is being cut and all the other needs of a neat clean place to shoot are being addressed, guess who you will find there.  Yes, it will be the same few who are making sure we have a match set up to shoot at on the weekends.  With all of our excuses as to why we do not have the time or wherewith to lift a finger on the day before, the day of or the day after and I'll assure you there are plenty of more reasons we can not do anything on those other four days a week also.  And we talk about the new generation of children we raise not having any sense of responsibility, they are watching you mommy and daddy, just like you probably watched your parents for an example!  WHOA way personal, Im sorry we should not say things that might hurt the feelings of those who are just here for the party and did not commit to the other stuff, you know, the dirty stuff!  Amazing that some who are so restricted can pick up all of those guns, ammo , carts and other personal needs to get here and play the game but not pick up a rod for which to hang a target from or drive a riding lawn mower at other times???           

 

Shooters volunteer because they want to and let's not forget that .  This is not a forced labor camp .You help if you want to . IMHO .  Best wishes and shoot straight and shoot often.:FlagAm:

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We are blessed with a great group of people and it usually takes 1 -1 1/2 hours to set up a six stage match. While not assigned, people pick a task and get right to it. The most heard  question is "what do you need?" Our start time is 9:00a.m. on the day before the match. We had to make a "no work before that time" rule because a lot of time, people would show up at 9:00 and the work would be half done. It's not usually for someone be at set up even though they can not  make the shoot.  

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The lazy folks:  we shot them!  It's in our rules that if you don't work you can be shot--one warning and you're fair game.

 

So far we've only had to shoot two.  Everyone thought the first one was an aberration but after the second one they knew we meant business.

 

The law in the county has ruled they died of Suicide by Lazy.  Not sure if it's legal anywhere else than The Republic.

 

 

 

 

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shaming someone is not the way to go.IMHO.  This is the way to lose a shooter.  

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I have to ask those that feel shaming someone is bad. If all they do is show up and shoot, what is the loss if they stop coming? Pissing-off those that help because others aren't is a bigger deal to me. Loose one of them will impact the club. 

 

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Guest Texas jack Black SASS#9362

 Well numbers count if you have 15 that do not help out of say 30 members and you lose them you are in a world of hurt. I still think shaming is a bad move it could lead to other problems. IMHO.:FlagAm:

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6 hours ago, I. M. Crossdraw, SASS# 8321 said:

shaming someone is not the way to go.IMHO.  This is the way to lose a shooter.  

 

Or a way to get someone with the program when all else fails.  YMMV.  And again, I don't see it as "losing a shooter" who doesn't do anything to help out as a loss (and again, beyond helping with simply setting up--shooters and their S/Os can provide support in several ways, not just dragging steel, and you don't even have to help out every time, just some of the time).

 

And for the term "forced labor camp?" I guess all the guys and gals just enjoy setting up for everyone else, correct?  Well, if they do, then OK then. 

But the title of this thread ain't "How Do I Get All These SASS People to Stop Helping Me!?!" now is it?  I'm also taking for granted those who don't agree me are +1s to their clubs.

 

Not trying to be the bad guy here, but if I have to wear the black hat on this one, I will wear it and wear it well ;)

 

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 It's real easy to ruin a club when you start asking folks to leave, I have first hand experience with that. Just be gracious to those that help and leave it at that. 

 

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1 hour ago, Assassin said:

 It's real easy to ruin a club when you start asking folks to leave, I have first hand experience with that. Just be gracious to those that help and leave it at that. 

 

this x 100

 

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Well Hell.  First of all, I am new to CAS, so I will do nothing but help start up, and help shut down.  It is not my club and I have no skin in the fight (yet).  But I have been a member of, led, and started quite a few organizations and currently lead one professionally.  But if you feel calling over to someone to get their attention for help in setting up or shutting down is too harsh?  Well, I guess we are all some pretty special snowflakes here, right?  I didn't say bring them up in a meeting and say: "we at the club would like to recognize XXXX for doing nothing this year!"

 

I said remind them that there are duties, and there are expectations from them as members.  Don't beleive me?  Ask the ones always working to sit down for a spell and watch nothing get setup.  If the slackers don't get the hint and start to set up you know what?  You have no club in the first place.  What we have here is some folks saying "we don't want to lose people."  I ask... why?  It must be for their dues I guess?  

 

Honestly, not trying to be a D@kk on this one, and even I feel my tone may be abrasive--so honestly I wish I could have started my opinion over again and maybe not use the word "shame."  Professionally and personally, I try to inspire people, lead by example, and give the benefit of the doubt.  And, I have found that when that fails some people only recognize some of the things I mentioned (and some things not discussed here).

 

But if you take one salient fact from somewhat acerbic my rant, please consider this:

The moment ANY organization is worried about enforcing and respecting club courtesy, common decency, and just simply enforcing societal norms?  YOU are DONE, and it is a matter of time whether you have a 1000 members or just 2.

 

Thank you gentlemen and gentleladies, sleep well, and safe--

 

 

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I'll take the few that help and run with it so long as we have a healthy showing at our monthly matches.

 

Those that help kinda like to help and generally enjoy seeing folks enjoy the match that they put together for them.

 

I'm not going to shame anyone...besides, I've never seen a membership form that stated that the person signing it will need to donate "X" amount of time to the club.

 

Cheers!

Phantom

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