4 Ways to be Great Rotary Follower


Followers blog
I hate to put it this way, but in Rotary you really can “lead from behind.”

This is the time of year we think about Rotary Leadership.  Larry Leahy, long-time Area Governor in Anne Arundel County just sent this helpful email to his clubs reminding them that club leadership election time is here.  (Hopefully Larry doesn’t mind me sharing an excerpt from his mail.) Please be sure to have all of your 2014-2015 elections completed by the end of the month. Some clubs have stringent requirements in the bylaws. All information about the current PE, the Secretary and the new PE needs to be sent to Sherry ASAP. The December 31 date is real and needs to be done. The advantage of prompt elections is obvious: the incoming president can turn their attention to effective planning going forward.

You may consider sending the PE and your current Vice President to Multi-District PETS in late February/ early March. The cost is minimal and the advantage gained is incredible. It is not by accident that the district has five leaders involved in the active planning of the district: Bob Parkinson, Peter Kyle, Bill Fine. Ken Solow and the newly selected designee. This effectively insures continuity and very effective advance planning.
Good stuff, Larry!  But this is also a good time of year to think about what it means to be a good follower.  Strangely, being a great club member that is not on the club’s leadership team is just as important of stepping-up to be a club leader.  Here are some tips for being a great Rotary follower:

1. Give your new club President a break.  It’s hard enough to step into the job without our club “experts” weighing in on everything they are doing wrong.  Your opinions are important, but give your club leaders a few months before you let them know that you are actually the Rotary expert in the club.

2. Be a joiner.  Join more than one committee in the club and infuse that group with your best ideas, energy, and enthusiasm.

3. Not withstanding point number 1 above, have high standards for your club president and the rest of your club leaders.  You should be setting a high bar for them in terms of your expectations about their performance, and they should be doing the same for you, AND themselves.

4. Embrace change!  Club President’s are taught that while we all love our Rotary clubs, we could probably love them a little less.  Give some new ideas a chance in your club.