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November 2008 Barker


16 October 2008

Sammamish Kennel Club Volunteer Rewards Program
A few days ago, while training my 3 month old Terv puppy, Zoom, it occurred to me that we reward the be-haviors that we want from our dogs, but fail to do the same thing for ourselves. According to learning theory, any behavior that is not rewarded in a meaningful manner, will soon be extinguished. There are many peo-ple in the Club that put in hundreds of hours each year to make our two shows and the Club successful. Our Show Chairs always say thank you to their committee members, but that is a very small “reward” for the time given so freely. Club members who work tirelessly for the good of the Club rarely receive any kind of thank you from anyone. In this light, I would like to submit the following proposal for consideration by the Club.

I propose that a system be designed whereby points would be assigned to each job that is performed by any and/or all club members. The Board could appoint a committee to define the jobs and point value for each job. Points associated with Club functions could be tracked by the Club Secretary. Points associated with shows could be tracked by the Show Chair and Show Committee Chairs and turned over to the Club Secre-tary in the month following the show. It would be the responsibility of each club member to document the job(s) they performed and the number of hours associated with the job(s). At our year end meeting in De-cember, the Secretary could read off the names of each person and the number of points they have accumu-lated. At that time, the “rewards” would be disbursed, or possibly at the March Awards Banquet. It would be fun if points could be turned in for cash at any time or when a person finds it necessary to resign from a com-mittee or the Club.

Some examples of jobs that could be assigned points:

Jobs Table

* Extra points would be allocated to those that participate in Sunday evening tear down at the August Show and Saturday evening clean up at the January Show – a lot of extra points!

Rewards that might be offered may include: payment for some part/all of a trip to Westminster (hotel, air fare, etc.) or a show of the winners choice, cash, dog equipment, entry fee(s) for a show/trial, high quality portrait of your dog (Vavra, Creative Indulgence), jewelry, club dues for the following year, gift card (restaurant, Costco, theater, symphony, opera, Home Depot, etc.), crystal, etc. The reward needs to be meaningful to the person that it is given to or the value of the Program is lost.

I think that it would also be fun to have a free raffle at each membership meeting for those that attend the meeting. Prior to each meeting, the Board (or a designated Board member) would decide what was to be raf-fled, but the raffle item would not be announced to the membership.

We are all busy people with a life outside of Sammamish Kennel Club. It is not easy to dedicate time and energy to the Club when we have so many other responsibilities in our lives. It is time that we rec-ognize, in a significant manner, those people that help in any way to make Sammamish Kennel Club

What do you think?

Dee Carlson
President – Sammamish Kennel Club

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