Adding Members

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This is the procedure we use to add new members to our group. This is an informal guide, the formal codified process is defined in our Standing Rules


Adding Members


When new people show up on our public nights we give them a tour and invite them to hang out with us. It's important that we explain our process to potential new members. Also it's important that members and especially officers are available to the new members. This also includes being available to process new memberships at each step.

Step 1

A person expresses an interest in joining. We explain that they have to visit Bloominglabs or a Bloominglabs event 3 times before they can join. Once they have met their attendance requirment you can have them fill out a membership application. They need to find a sponsor and often the person who gives them a tour ends up sponsoring them unless there is a concern (very uncommon of course).

Step 2

Once they meet their attendance requirement have them fill out a membershpi application. Then explain that we use a voting proceedure once the application is submitted before they can become a member - this usually takes a week. It's important to tell them we will finish their membership app, set them up with an RFID tag, and collect their first dues the next week when they come back. Occaisonally people expect to hear back from us via email and never show up again.

Now you need to send an email to the members list announcing the prospective member wants to join. Usually we then have a week for anyone to speak up for or against the potential new member.

Step 3

The 4th week - we have to work to make sure we don't drop the ball here. Most people by this time know us well enough to approach one or more of us about finishing their membership process. Sometimes people are afraid to speak up, and it shouldn't be their job to either. When we see someone who's come back we need to engage them.

At this point collect their dues if that hasn't happened yet. If they don't have their dues we don't finish out the membership. When we finish it out without collecting the money first about half the time they never pay and then you have a paperwork mess to cleanup with nothing to show for it.

Once paid up, get them an RFID fob and put their info in the New Member application. It adds them to the invoicing system and mailing lists. When they are added to the members mailing list they receive an introductory email that includes links to the New Members doc and the Membership Manual. Add them to the Google spreadsheet. Lastly, you need to log in to the invoicing system and mark their invoice as paid.

Finish filling out our part of the membership application. Find their signed liability waiver (or have them sign another one) and staple it behind the membership application. Then put those documents into the completed membership application envelope in/on/near the green filing cabinet near the front door.

Ask them if they have any questions. Also run through the list of items on the back of the membership form clip board with them (showing them where the first-aid kit is, fire extinguishers, how to get help, etc).

Removing Members

This is much simpler. First have the officer in charge of handling invoices stop their invoice recurrences. Once that is done they will no longer receive monthly invoices. This also causes them to be automatically be removed from the members mailing list within a week (only this list though, they can remain signed up to the announce and discuss list). Currently we still have to manually disable their RFID. If they are behind on their invoices try to work with them to collect the over-due invoices. Lastly remove them from the Google spreadsheet. That gets them out of the business systems.

If there is a problem with the member things can be expidited as needed. If they had any online access that can be removed as well if needed (wiki, servers in the space, etc). Also our ByLaws have provisions for handling member problems.

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