Have you seen the PNM POV video? It provides a little insight on what goes through the minds of Potential New Members (PNMs) during an Invitational Meeting. We already talked about the setup of the room, but today we’re going to dive a little deeper and give each table some attention.
Why are tables important? Tables give you space to display information as well as collect information. When a PNM walks into the room, they may not know where to go or what to do. Just think- this student may not know anyone at that Invitational Meeting. Instead of encouraging PNMs to just sit down and wait for the presentation to start, encourage them to walk around, look at information and talk with other Members. Here are the various tables we used in the video and why we suggest you use them too!
The first and most important table is the sign-in table. Here’s what you should have:
- Sign-in sheet. It’s important to collect information of who attends your events. You can collect as much information as you wish, but we suggest at least collecting their name, cell number and email. This way you can follow up with them with a “thank you” email or a text about the next step in joining. A sign-in sheet can be replaced with a laptop and excel sheet!
- Always have extra pens! Phi Sigma Pi pens are a bonus.
- Name tags will aide both your Members and PNMs in remembering names. It’s common to forget a name after 5 seconds of hearing it, but no one will ever know with name tags! Add something like a fun fact to aide in discussion.
- An activity is a great way to get PNMs mingling with Members. We chose Human Bingo. You didn’t see it in action in the video, but Human Bingo is a bingo sheet with different characteristics or fun facts in each square… for example: has blue eyes, is a business major or owns a cat. PNMs and Members get to go around and find someone that fulfills that fact until they get BINGO.
- A poster with your upcoming Recruitment events is great to have at a sign-in table. Encourage PNMs to take a pic of it as soon as they walk in.
- Decorate the sign-in table with some Phi Sigma Pi swag. Here we chose to fill some space with a folder (you can then use the folder to collect the sign-in sheets and completed Human Bingos!).
Next up is the swag table. This is where you put all of your Chapter information, information about the Fraternity as a whole and some fun decorative items. We had so much swag, we used TWO tables!
- A tablecloth and table runner make the whole display look professional and pleasing to the eye.
- Display information about Leadership in Action and the professional development that is offered. Show it off- it’s award-winning!
- Be up front about dues and time commitments.
- Brotherhood is for life- be sure to communicate in some way with some Alumni information.
- Does your Chapter have any shiny awards? Show off how awesome you are!
- The current and past Fraternal magazines are a great way to display information about the Fraternity.
- Show off some real Phi Sigma Pi swag like PSP stoles and shirts. All of the PNMs will be imagining themselves in them!
- This graphic explains the Phi Sigma Pi scholarships. Make sure PNMs know what all our organization has to offer.
- Don’t forget to display all of the items that PNMs would receive during their journey as Members.
- Our commitment to social service is a huge aspect of our Tripod. Have some HOBY swag ready to show that!
Last but not least, we have the snack table. Snack tables are a great way to get PNMs to stay after the presentation. The end of your presentation should encourage PNMs to grab a snack and stick around to meet some of the Members. Here’s a few tips regarding the snack table.
- Be sure to provide all of the necessities like plates and napkins.
- We decided to provide cookies at our snack table. In the video, our PNM is gluten free- so we provided gluten free cookies! Be sensitive to the various food allergies.
- We provided cookies that were wrapped. Some PNMs may prefer wrapped food items.
- We also made sure to have another option- and a more healthier one, such as fruit snacks!
- Mints or gum are great to have out on a table. No one wants to worry about bad breath while networking.
- Water (or some type of beverage) is essential. Be sure to have cups too if you don’t have individual bottles. We created custom bottle wrappers that had the next Recruitment event printed on them (style points)!
- Fill the rest of the table with some Phi Sigma Pi swag. Big letters look great as a backdrop!
Now you have some ideas on how to decorate the room and set up some tables, make a checklist of everything you’ll need. This way you don’t forget anything!