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Old 01-12-2012, 09:49 AM   #883
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Don,

Thanks for the correction. My mind was thinking this year and my hands were writing last years numbers.

Also, "THANKS" for making them say what was taken off the list for review and input (Number 3).

Hope you can make it to a WDCU rally this year, if you make the OBX in Aug. We'll see ya there!

Enjoy,
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Old 01-12-2012, 01:40 PM   #884
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Originally Posted by Don McKelvay View Post
Hi Paul,

To set the record straight, no I did not say we had over 400 members not renew, it was 248. Here is what I said:

"Well, as of the end of November 2011 we have 5,219 families compared to 5,467 at the same point in 2010. This means, unfortunately, a loss of 248 members or 4.5%. The losses seem to be slowing as in comparing 2010 to 2009 we lost 414 members or almost 7%."

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Originally Posted by wkerfoot View Post
Thanks for that clarification. Of the 5,219 families, how many are new families? The net loss appears to be 248.
Bill makes a good point—we must be careful not to confuse apples and oranges here. WBCCI membership figures are slippery because every year some members do not renew, while new members join. It’s like a leaky bucket with a continuous trickle of water in the top and another trickle of water out through leaks in the bucket. A net loss of 248 members and a total of 400 members not renewing could both be true.

Another important question is, who didn’t renew. Each year a certain number of members leave due to aging out, selling their RVs, and other unavoidable losses. But WBCCI politics have led to some avoidable losses.

In 2009-2010 our unit's membership grew handsomely. Then came 2010 with Leo getting chucked out of the club, numerous members being sent lawyer letters, the whole WBCCI forums fiasco, etc., etc. Our unit membership declined by a third between June 2010 and June 2011, despite several new members. Who left? Well, right offhand I can think of one unit vice president, two members who were regular contributors to the unit newsletter, and at least three who hosted rallies the previous year. In other words, the kind of people the WBCCI can't afford to lose. And there's no mystery as to why they left--they were vocal about their disgust with WBCCI politics.
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Old 01-13-2012, 11:18 PM   #885
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Membership figures

Hi Paul, Bill & Nuvite-F,

This post provides information reference all three of your posts.

Yes we lost 248 members as of end Nov and any loss is not what we want. Paul, I am looking forward to seeing everyone again (but not sure when) at a WDCU Rally - always a great time although I will miss several who are now TAC members.

As we calculate memberships starting July 1 each year, thus far we have had 353 new members.

As of end December 2011 we had 1,070 who had not yet renewed - this is 17.9%. As of December 2010 we had 1,323 or 20.3%. Letters go to all these non-renewals but Club Headquarters receive a small number of replies. This month letters will go out again to those with snail mail addresses and I have arranged for a separate internet letter and survey to all those with email addresses. Hopefully the internet survey will result in more replies with more feedback and then will be combined with the snail mail responses.

I think a lot was accomplished at this IBT - I know at my one hour Membership Discussion on Jan 9th there seemed to be about 100 or so attending and a lot of useful comments/suggestions were made by the members. I am looking forward to the new website as one of the changes will be allowing prospective members to join a unit on-line and pay their first years membership dues via credit card/pay pal. I covered much of the detail in my Membership Report on Jan 10th at the Seminar and a couple of updates at the Meeting on Jan 13. I also arranged for a Happy Hour with the region membership chairmen that were at Hattiesburg but actually most of the time we talked about membership ideas, etc.

Cheers,
Don McKelvay
International Membership Chairman
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Old 01-14-2012, 07:14 AM   #886
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Question Arithmetic?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Don McKelvay View Post

Yes we lost 248 members as of end Nov and any loss is not what we want.

As we calculate memberships starting July 1 each year, thus far we have had 353 new members.

As of end December 2011 we had 1,070 who had not yet renewed - this is 17.9%.
Hi, Don,

Can you explain where the figure of 248 members lost comes from? If 1070 members don't renew and 348 new members join, it looks to me like the membership is down 1070 - 353 = 717 members as of Dec 31, 2011, not 248.

What am I missing?

Thanks,
Nuvi
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Old 01-14-2012, 07:24 AM   #887
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We are probably off topic, but we Spoke with about 2/3 of those who didn't renew in our unit last year. The overwhelming reason was health or death of a spouse. There were few who did not renew because they weren't enjoying their membership.

On a bright note, we had about 5 long time members who resumed participation after years of inactivity. Those folks were contacted by our President-elect or his wife and invited to visit a rally. They had fun and returned!

Our unit gained members (comparing September numbers, year to year). We may not be the norm. I would also add that our Membership Chair finished a 2 year term in October. That position is critical to success and needs continuity!
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Old 01-14-2012, 01:29 PM   #888
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Even if officers were lawyers, when motions are being discussed and amended, it is hard to see all the possible conflicts and unintended consequences without careful study. Democracy can be sloppy. Lawyers in attendance may see the most glaring problems and raise them at a meeting (if recognized by the chair), but sometimes you have to go over all the organizational documents and the law and think about it for a while. In a meeting this usually doesn't happen, but when a motion is made to be considered at the next meeting, there should be time to do so if anyone wants to pursue it.

As for membership numbers, it is possible the WBCCI is getting down to a core of people who will keep sending in dues. They are either happy with what happens, only care about their unit, are new people who join for a year or two, or don't notice anything and just send the check. The biological effect (old age or death) gradually reduces membership if newbies don't make up the drop in members. 4.5% drop is better than the previous year, but is still significant. At that rate, in maybe a bit more than dozen years the membership will be half of today's number (no, I didn't do the exact numbers, but a fair guess). At some point the club cannot support what it does now and will offer less and less, or raise dues to a point more and more don't renew and net income still drops. For a while, the endowment can make up the difference, but that can't go on forever. And as internet oriented groups grow, and have no or low dues, the competition may take away more and more members.

Critical to the continuance of the club is attracting newbies. If fewer join for the first time each year, that is very significant. Also important is how many renew each year. Both of these numbers over a reasonable period of time (5, 10 years?) would tell a lot.

The other source of "new" members is from that pool of people who have quit because they are angry with the present leadership. They seem unlikely to return for some time until convinced there is real change in leadership. Some will return given their level of belief in real change, but many will have already found other places to have similar experiences. I expect this is not for some time a good source of members, but the club must look there as well as newbies for members.

Gene
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Old 01-15-2012, 09:31 PM   #889
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nuvite-F View Post
Hi, Don,

Can you explain where the figure of 248 members lost comes from? If 1070 members don't renew and 348 new members join, it looks to me like the membership is down 1070 - 353 = 717 members as of Dec 31, 2011, not 248.

What am I missing?

Thanks,
Nuvi
.
Hello again Nuvi,

Yes, numbers can be confusing and has already been pointed out one needs to compare apples to apples and oranges to oranges. That is the case here.

1,070 Non-Renewals (apple-End Dec 2011 compared to end Jun 2011)
353 New Members (apple-Those who joined Jul 1 to end Dec 2011)
248 Members Lost (orange-End Nov 2011 compared to end Nov 2010)

Therefore, Members end June 2011 was 5,995 - 1,070 = 4,925 + 353 = 5,278. However, Dec 22 we actually had 5,313. Not sure what happened with the other 35.

Later this spring, after the replies from those who did not renew, we will have an idea why they did not renew as well as how many of the 1.070 plan to renew.

Cheers,
Don McKelvay
International Membership Chairman
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Old 01-16-2012, 04:52 AM   #890
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Don, I have always admired your honesty. I find it extremely honorable that you are actually responding to folks here. Most of your equals give the appearance that they are unaware that members even exist. I raise my glass and toast to you for talking to the common man.

Generally I can keep my eye on the nut hiding under the ball, but you got me there with the apples and oranges. Juice might be better to discuss for generally it is a blend of fruits. Perhaps you need to use actual numbers like in 2011 we had x members or in 2010 we had y members. Doing all that lost members + non renewals x new members= confusion. Perhaps that is preferred over the reality of the situation...

I equate this to my check book. I can talk about how many wire transfers or how many deposits went in but in the end what only really matters is the final balance. I think that number is the one being avoided here.
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Old 01-16-2012, 09:23 AM   #891
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Originally Posted by Don McKelvay View Post
1,070 Non-Renewals (apple-End Dec 2011 compared to end Jun 2011)
353 New Members (apple-Those who joined Jul 1 to end Dec 2011)
248 Members Lost (orange-End Nov 2011 compared to end Nov 2010)

Therefore, Members end June 2011 was 5,995 - 1,070 = 4,925 + 353 = 5,278. However, Dec 22 we actually had 5,313. Not sure what happened with the other 35.
Don,

Thanks for your reply. Let me slightly rephrase your statements above:

1. 1,070 members who were in the club on June 30, 2011 had not renewed as of December 31, 2011.

2. 353 new members joined between July 1, 2011 and December 31, 2011.

3. The club had 248 fewer members in November 2011 than it did in November 2010.

We can't do any arithmetic with these numbers because they apply to three different time periods.

Much of the mystery comes from the fact that there are two more-or-less official snapshots of the membership numbers, at the end of November, when the directory is published, and the end of June, when unit votes are calculated for the Delegates Meeting.

Although we exhort members to pay their dues by November 30 in order to get their names in the directory, many do not, so it's a safe bet that the November 30 membership total is always substantially less than the June 30 total. As of November 30, members who have not renewed are dropped from the rolls. Between November 30 and June 30, the membership increases as late-renewing members pay their dues and new members join. The only decrease in membership between November and June would be those few disaffected members who actually send in a letter of resignation to headquarters during that time period.

What I take away from all this is that I'm wasting my time trying to "follow the bouncing ball" of changing membership. The annual figure presented to the delegates at the International Rally is the only meaningful one.
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Old 01-16-2012, 04:14 PM   #892
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Is there some one person who has the actual membership list? If so, perhaps that person could give actual membership numbers for the same date for the past 5-10 years. It really doesn't matter what that date is, only that the same one is used for each year.

Another interesting number would be the number of new (not late renewals, or former members) members each year. That would give some indication of whether the club is going to survive at all in the future.

It doesn't matter what percent of the membership renews late or early. I suspect that there are some who are chronically late on all of their renewals. There may even be a few who deliberately renew too late to be included in a directory. The people in these two groups will eventually renew.

A certain percentage of the membership will not renew, not because of any dissatisfaction with the organization, but because they no longer meet the membership requirements. They may no longer own an Airstream. They may even be dead.

When we buy an Airstream, it will be a used trailer. That means that someone else either is no longer an Airstream owner (thus no longer meeting the membership requirement), or that they have purchased a newer trailer. In the first situation, if we join WBCCI, the net membership has not changed. In the second situation, the net membership will increase. On the other hand, if we decide not to join WBCCI, in the first situation the membership has decreased, and in the second situation it has stayed the same. In these four possibilities, only one results in an increase in membership. Two result in no change, and one results in a decrease.

If the organization is to continue, it seems to me that somewhere along the line someone is going to have to make an effort to recruit new members. Perhaps those members who are selling their Airstreams could get an information packet and membership application and give it to the new owners. When we had Katahdin sheep the organization encouraged us to actually pay for the first year's membership for anyone who bought breeding stock from us. That might actually be a nice gesture for a seller to make.
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Old 01-16-2012, 05:32 PM   #893
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Cindy Reed, the supervisor at Jackson Center, is the ultimate source of all membership information. She gives that to Don, the membership chairman. The club has been losing members for many years. We now have about 6000 members which would be 10% of the 60,000 Airstreams that are reported to be still operational, if each member owned one Airstream. Actually, many members (especially VAC members) have more than one. To attract more members, we will need to develop new programs to attract a broader demographic of members.
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Old 01-16-2012, 06:27 PM   #894
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Is there some one person who has the actual membership list? If so, perhaps that person could give actual membership numbers for the same date for the past 5-10 years. It really doesn't matter what that date is, only that the same one is used for each year.
Dave,

Since you are a relative newbie you are probably not aware of the extent to which this subject has been hashed and rehashed in the past. The thread below contains a lot of useful information and is a relatively short read:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f286...ers-71231.html

The short version is that WBCCI membership peaked at about 25,000 members in 1978 and has steadily declined ever since, to around 5,000 members today.

Quote:
If the organization is to continue, it seems to me that somewhere along the line someone is going to have to make an effort to recruit new members. Perhaps those members who are selling their Airstreams could get an information packet and membership application and give it to the new owners. When we had Katahdin sheep the organization encouraged us to actually pay for the first year's membership for anyone who bought breeding stock from us. That might actually be a nice gesture for a seller to make.
For some years WBCCI gave a year free membership to new Airstream buyers and at one point extended this to buyers of used Airstreams. The practice was discontinued as judged to be ineffective. Here's a thread about that, also:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f286...-free-204.html

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Old 01-17-2012, 09:39 AM   #895
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The practice was discontinued as judged to be ineffective.
So the present approach is effective?

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Old 01-17-2012, 10:18 AM   #896
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So the present approach is effective?

Gene
How did you get that from what he said? Nuvite simply said a previous approach wasn't effective, and he's made at least 3 posts in 48 hours pointing out that membership is dropping.
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