Approach the Prospect

With the district executive and the membership committee chair, determine who should approach each organization to schedule an appointment. This could be a member of the district new-unit organization team, a Scouter who is a member of the organization, an influential community member who is a Scouter and who knows the head of the organization, and/or the district executive.

Initially, contact the head of the organization. If this person would like to have another key member of the organization or a member of the organization's board present, try to determine who that person will be before the initial meeting.

Planning the Approach

When arranging to meet, this approach works best. Ask if you may come by to talk about something you feel is very important to the community. If possible, don't go into more detail on the phone. If asked what this is about, simply state that it is related to the youth of the community and you would like to seek their ideas and share some of your own. Don't be evasive, but save the "sale" for the personal visit. Allow 30 minutes for the initial visit.

This is a two-step process: 1) fact, need, and information gathering, then 2) making the presentation.

Fact, Need, and Information Gathering (Meeting the needs of the prospects)

You should visit with the head of the prospective organization to gather facts and information and to determine the organization's needs before you make the sales presentation mentioned in step three. This visit involves a lot of listening. Find out about the organization's goals and dreams. Then you will be able to determine how Scouting can help the organization meet its needs.

A typical conversation may lead to questions like:

  • What is your organization doing in our community?
  • What should you be doing?
  • What roadblocks keep your organization from achieving those objectives?
  • Who else from your organization should I talk to?

Completing the Profile

Following that initial visit and prior to the sales presentation, complete the background information about the organization and the community. Address details such as

  • Total youth available (TAY) in the organization's membership
  • Total youth available in the surrounding community
  • Members of the organization who are already Scouters
  • Similar organizations that utilize the Scouting program
  • The organization's community service efforts
  • The organization's past affiliation with Scouting, if any

Complete a New-Unit Prospect Profile Worksheet for each prospect.