In my years as a member of Toastmasters International, I have noticed that people tend to gravitate and join a club for four reasons. I use the acronym CLIC to remember these reasons:

  1. C – Convenience
  2. L – Learning
  3. I – Idea of Belonging
  4. C – Characteristics that Define a Club

One of the first reasons a person chooses a club is because of the CONVENIENCE The club is convenient geographically and the time the club meets is convenient. For some a morning, lunchtime or evening meeting works best.
If the club isn't convenient for someone, he or she will often join a club because it is a place where he or she will be LEARNING a great deal. In this case, the club must provide significant value for the inconvenience.

Most importantly, a person needs to have the IDEA that the club is a place where he or she can belong. If the idea of belonging becomes strong enough, the person will want to join. People need to feel welcomed and see themselves as an integrated member of the group.

Lastly, people join clubs because there is a defining CHARACTERISTIC of the club. Sometimes the club is one that belongs to a company. The Speech Acrobats club is an advanced club that requires club members to have their Competent Communicator (CC) award to join. In addition, the club videotapes every meeting and club members learn from their recordings.

What reasons compelled you to join an organization?

What can you do to make your organization CLIC?

What more can you do to help others feel they belong to your group?