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How Well Do You Know Retention Best Practices?

You've recruited and you've pinned your Initiates, but your job doesn't end there. Retention is an important topic... we want to keep the Initiates we pin and Induct them as Members! So here's a little quiz to test your knowledge of Retention best practices and hopefully teach you a few tips!

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  1. 1. How many times are you required by our Constitution to give feedback to an Initiate on their progress on the requirements of the Initiation program?

    Beta Phi Chapter's Fall '16 Initiate Class
    At least once during Initiation.
    There is not a requirement.
    At least twice during Initiation.
    Once a week during Initiation.
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    At least once during Initiation.

    Article IX Section 5, B outlines the Initiation requirements. Requirement X reads “Ensure each Initiate is provided feedback in person at least once on the Initiate’s progress on the requirements of the Chapter Initiation Program.” We encourage every Chapter to complete this requirement by holding an Initiate Mid-Review (check out the Resource Center!). However, it never hurts to check in with Initiates more. The Big/Little program is great for this!

  2. 2. What is an INCORRECT response to an Initiate who says they're struggling with the cost of dues/fees?

    Alpha Theta Chapter's Fall '16 Initiate Class.
    May I show you exactly how much it costs and how that compares to other college expenses?
    Do you know how much it costs and what those costs support?
    If we could arrange a payment plan, would that make a difference?
    I'm sorry, that's just how much it costs.
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    I'm sorry, that's just how much it costs.

    Initiates may have concerns during the Initiation process about things such as costs, time management and focusing on their grades. Always try and work with the Initiate by offering extra guidance or ask a Chapter Member who has experienced the same challenges to mentor them. For responses to other Initiate concerns, check out the Quality Response Guide in the Resource Center (http://tinyurl.com/hemj2qn).

  3. 3. Which of the following is NOT a goal of the Big-Little Program?

    The Delta Beta Chapter at the Big-Little Reveal!
    Build a long-term, genuine relationship with the Initiate by taking the time to learn and understand how the Initiate’s values mesh with Phi Sigma Pi.
    Work alongside the Initiate, making sure that all Initiation Program requirements are adequately met; and that any issues/concerns throughout the program are addressed in a timely and responsible manner.
    Have the Initiate prove his/her worthiness to become a Member.
    Share with the Initiate the many benefits of membership, including future leadership opportunities and information about National events and programs.
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    Have the Initiate prove his/her worthiness to become a Member.

    The relationship between an Initiate and their Big is often the most significant bond that exists during a Member’s time in the Chapter. The Big serves as a mentor for the Initiate and makes sure that they make it to Induction by answering any questions they have. The relationship is built on genuine interest in getting to know each other, trust that develops over time, and mutual respect.

  4. 4. Of the following ways to retain Initiates, which is the BEST for ensuring long-term retention?

    The Beta Eta Initiate Class (Fall '16) of the Eta Chapter.
    Make sure they fulfill all the National and Local requirements for membership.
    Spend time getting to know them and making sure they feel comfortable joining Phi Sigma Pi.
    Give them a discount on local dues.
    Make sure the Initiation Program is strongly rooted in National and Local history.
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    Spend time getting to know them and making sure they feel comfortable joining Phi Sigma Pi.

    Although it's important that Initiates fulfill their requirements and know Phi Sigma Pi history, it's the fellowship and bonds they make that will keep them here. Plan events that allow Initiates to get to know Members and encourage Initiate/Member bonding. Remember to ALWAYS treat Initiates with respect and let them know that they are valued as future Members.

  5. 5. If an Initiate leaves the Initiation Program, what one thing should the Chapter NOT do?

    Gamma Epsilon's Fall '16 Initiate Class.
    Schedule a time for a Member that the Initiate trusts, their Big for example, to sit down and talk privately about their reasons for leaving.
    Forbid all current Members and Initiates from interacting with the Initiate.
    Provide a link to an anonymous survey that asks the Initiate to provide information about why they chose to leave the Initiation Program.
    Talk as an Executive Board about how changes can be made to avoid losing Initiates in the future for the same reasons.
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    Forbid all current Members and Initiates from interacting with the Initiate.

    Initiates may choose to leave the Initiation Program for a variety of reasons. It’s important to remember that, while this may not be anyone’s fault, there are usually things that can be done to keep Initiates from leaving the Program prior to Induction. Mid-Review is a great time to check in about how an Initiate is progressing through the Initiation Program, but it is important to establish open communication with all Initiates from the very beginning of the Program.

  6. 6. What is a key factor to ensuring Initiates stay through the Initiation Program and become engaged Members?

    The Beta Iota Initiate Class of the Alpha Epsilon Chapter at their Unity Retreat Day!
    Having weekly dinners with Members and Initiates.
    Having the tools to pass the National Exam.
    Making sure that the Initiates understand the expectations of them and create genuine connections with other Members.
    Pairing the Initiate with an Alumni Member to be penpals through the Initiation program.
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    Making sure that the Initiates understand the expectations of them and create genuine connections with other Members.

    Weekly dinners and penpals are nice and, of course, Initiates need to pass the National Exam. However, the most important factor is that the Initiate's understand what is going to be expected of them ahead of time so that they don't feel that being an Initiate/Member is more work/time/money than they expected. Real, genuine connections are also key. Instead of just weekly dinners, try events that allow Members to connect on a deeper level!

  7. 7. Which of the following is not a good thing to do to keep Initiates excited as they approach Induction?

    The Initiates of the Delta Kappa Chapter held a fun skating event to bond with the Chapter's Members.
    Spend at least five hours a week with the Initiates in study hours, preparing for the National Exam.
    Start talking with the Initiates about leadership opportunities in the Chapter.
    Talk with Initiates about what they need, and work to find ways to get them the resources they need and/or want.
    Make personal connections with Initiates every time you interact.
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    Spend at least five hours a week with the Initiates in study hours, preparing for the National Exam.

    Initiation can be a daunting process. Initiates will benefit from having something to look forward to during the several weeks of the Initiation Program. Anything you can do to make the Initiates feel like part of the Chapter during this time makes them more likely to make it to Induction.

  8. 8. Who is responsible for ensuring Initiate retention in a Chapter?

    The Alpha Rho Initiate Class (Fall '16) of the Gamma Theta Chapter.
    Initiate Advisor and Initiation Committee
    Bigs
    Brother at Large
    All Members
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    All Members

    While the Initiate Advisor, Big, Brother at Large, and members of the Initiation Committee all play roles in making sure that Initiates make it to Induction, it is important that all Members of the Chapter are invested in the success of each Initiate. Members can contribute to this effort by making the most of all interactions with Initiates.

  9. 9. What’s the best way to know that our Chapter is facilitating the best Initiation Program?

    The Beta Gamma Initiate Class (Fall '16) of the Alpha Xi Chapter.
    Follow the Curriculum Guide.
    Ask other Chapters to share their Initiate Handbook.
    Email all of your Initiation Program materials to your Chapter Consultant for feedback.
    Use the Initiate Program that has been passed down from year to year that includes input from past Initiate Advisors.
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    Follow the Curriculum Guide

    Although all answers are good, the Curriculum Guide is the most complete resource for all things Initiation. Additional resources, including PowerPoint presentations for each week of the Initiation Program and answer keys for National Quizzes and Exams can be found in the Resource Center.

  10. 10. Of the helpful tips listed below, which is most important to ensure retention of new Members after Induction?

    Members and Initiates of the Epsilon Mu Chapter went hiking to reflect and share what motivates each other.
    Making sure every new Member has a leadership position or is assigned to a committee.
    Communicating Member expectations and establishing accountability measures.
    Ensuring that new Members understand Chapter Bylaws and Operating Policies.
    Maintaining open communication throughout the Initiation Program that carries through beyond Induction.
    Correct!
    Wrong!

    Maintaining open communication throughout the Initiation Program that carries through beyond Induction.

    The most important way to ensure that new Members continue as part of the Chapter long after Induction is to make sure that there are open lines of communication to the Executive Board and other Members. New Members should be welcomed into the Chapter with open arms, be given all of the information that they need to be successful, and be encouraged to ask questions.

How Well Do You Know Retention Best Practices?

You've almost got it!

You're on your way to becoming a Retention Pro! Take some time to read over the Initiate Advisor resources in the Resource Center (phisigmapi.org/resources). Knowing these resources better will help you know how to respond to concerns and create life-long Members. Remember, it's the whole Chapter's responsibility to retain Members- not just the Initiate Advisor's!

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You're a Retention Pro!

You understand that quality bonds and clear expectations are what will create life-long Members. You also know how to work with Initiates to solve issues and ease concerns. We know you've been to the Resource Center a few times too! Make sure to share this information with the rest of your Chapter and encourage others to become Retention Pros too!

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