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-   -   The Best Strategy for a "Weak Recruiting" Chapter (http://www.greekchat.com/gcforums/showthread.php?t=127128)

DeltaBetaBaby 06-05-2012 03:36 PM

The Best Strategy for a "Weak Recruiting" Chapter
 
So I was thinking about the thread on mutual selection, and who gets to do the selecting, and I said that weak recruiting chapters (hereafter "WRC") don't get to do much selecting. Under RFM, they are heavily recommended not to release too many women.

But then I thought about whether this is really the best strategy, and decided to take a break from my real math work to ponder this.

Let's say that there are 4 chapters, and 100 PNM's, and we can rank both, i.e. the PNM's rank in desirability from 100(best) to 1(worst), and the chapters likewise from 4 to 1. What we'd expect to happen is that PNM's 100-76 end up in chapter 4, 75-51 end up in 3, 50-26 end up in 2, and 25-1 end up in 1.

Now, let's say chapter 1 is sick of getting the very worst of the PNM's, and they say "forget RFM, we're only going to invite PNM's 100 - 21 back". Now, there are only 80 PNM's left instead of 100, so PNM's 100-81 end up in chapter 4, 80-61 end up in 3, 60-41 end up in 2, and 40-20 end up in 1.

Chapter 1 gets a smaller pledge class, but they have gotten far more desirable PNM's than they would have if they had followed their RFM and invited all 100 PNM's back.

Of course, I have seriously over-simplified the model; assuming there is one round and everyone attends one pref, and then signs a bid card, but it got me thinking about how a WRC could be best off not following the RFM, by under-inviting.

I know this ignores retention and everything else, but the basic thing I am getting at is this: If a WRC under-invites, it may be the difference between PNM's having one chapter and no chapters, and therefore being dropped from recruitment altogether. Dropping PNM's obviously decreases quota, but lowering quota usually helps a WRC. So, there is incentive for a WRC to work against what is best for the system.

FSUZeta 06-05-2012 03:54 PM

What you wrote makes sense, but it seems IRL when quota is low, the WRC also ends up with a lower number. Say quota is 15 or 20-WRC ends up with less than 10. We could probably look at some of Irishpipes fabulous recruitment schedule/results threads to see examples.

Titchou 06-05-2012 03:58 PM

I can think of several things that you are overlooking to start with. One: even in the bottom 20, there may be some the other groups want. And two, you are assuming that none of those 20 meet the WRC's standards - some might be at the low end but still meet the requirements. And the WRC might do a bang up job of COB that gets them to total. Stranger things have happened. And with 4 groups, there will be more than one round of invitationals - if the are doing standard recruitment and not minimumly structured. So the top chapters are going to release according to RFM the first time around. If the WRC just simply chooses based on merit, they'll get their fair share - as quota will take care of itself.

redlady2 06-05-2012 04:09 PM

My chapter faced a similar situation when I was our chapter president back eight or so years ago. We had historically been a weak recruiting chapter, but our recruitment chair had been an absolute rockstar that year and we were ready to improve our chapter recruiting strength. Our problem was that we had an unusually high number of sisters who were on study abroad/internships so our recruiting number was lower. Increased recruiting strength + lower numbers = total double rushing disaster. I was the chapter president and I wound up having to double rush women. What a mess. This was at a large competitive school in the south where each party can involve bringing eighty PNMs through your house.

Our school was implementing RFM that year and there was strong pressure on us to offer invitations to second and third round for women that we did not think were a match and who we could not reasonably handle coming through our doors. We felt that inviting back fewer would mean smaller parties for us than for other houses but that we'd have a better chance of retaining them if we weren't double and triple rushing them, and if the other women under the tent with them were more of our "preferred" PNMs. (We also knew PNMs talked, the "well that chapter invites back EVERYONE" awful tent talk, etc. etc.)

At any rate, we were in agreement with DeltaBetaBaby's argument. Now, with a few years behind me and some perspective, I understand why our HQ and Panhellenic were so adamant that we stick to the RFM figures. (I think we were a pilot school for RFM, so if our chapter went "rogue" it would have messed with things.) I do think there's an argument to be made that releasing more women than RFM recommends is risky but has potential upside.

DeltaBetaBaby 06-05-2012 05:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Titchou (Post 2150355)
I can think of several things that you are overlooking to start with. One: even in the bottom 20, there may be some the other groups want.

Yes, I assumed that there was an obvious PNM hierarchy, which is an extreme example, and certainly QA's could mess this up. I think that what the WRC would have to be pretty sure that the women they were cutting would not be carried through to prefs at any other chapter.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Titchou (Post 2150355)
And two, you are assuming that none of those 20 meet the WRC's standards - some might be at the low end but still meet the requirements.

Why take an okay PNM if you can take an awesome one?

Quote:

Originally Posted by Titchou (Post 2150355)
And the WRC might do a bang up job of COB that gets them to total. Stranger things have happened.

What does this have to do with FR?

Quote:

Originally Posted by Titchou (Post 2150355)
And with 4 groups, there will be more than one round of invitationals - if the are doing standard recruitment and not minimumly structured. So the top chapters are going to release according to RFM the first time around. If the WRC just simply chooses based on merit, they'll get their fair share - as quota will take care of itself.

But in general, it benefits the WRC to have a lower quota, I think.

DeltaBetaBaby 06-05-2012 05:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by FSUZeta (Post 2150354)
What you wrote makes sense, but it seems IRL when quota is low, the WRC also ends up with a lower number. Say quota is 15 or 20-WRC ends up with less than 10. We could probably look at some of Irishpipes fabulous recruitment schedule/results threads to see examples.

Ah, this is a good point. I think the problem would be how many of those women I put in the 40-21 bucket would stick around if WRC was the only chapter on their list.

IndianaSigKap 06-05-2012 05:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DeltaBetaBaby (Post 2150365)
Ah, this is a good point. I think the problem would be how many of those women I put in the 40-21 bucket would stick around if WRC was the only chapter on their list.

Bingo. That is the problem at some schools, definitely mine. Girls who were left with the 3 or 4 WRCs chose to drop out because the campus is large enough that not going Greek isn't social suicide. It still goes on at my campus, so I am sure it goes on at others.

KSUViolet06 06-05-2012 05:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DeltaBetaBaby (Post 2150365)
Ah, this is a good point. I think the problem would be how many of those women I put in the 40-21 bucket would stick around if WRC was the only chapter on their list.

^^^Not very many. In my experience, your 40-21 bucket girls tend to perceive that they are in the 20-1 bracket and therefore are deserving of a 20-1 chapter. Their expectations don't match reality. But that's a whole other thread.

DeltaBetaBaby 06-05-2012 06:15 PM

How did this thread get stickied?

carnation 06-05-2012 06:18 PM

I stickied it.

Mevara 06-05-2012 06:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by redlady2 (Post 2150356)
My chapter faced a similar situation when I was our chapter president back eight or so years ago. We had historically been a weak recruiting chapter, but our recruitment chair had been an absolute rockstar that year and we were ready to improve our chapter recruiting strength. Our problem was that we had an unusually high number of sisters who were on study abroad/internships so our recruiting number was lower. Increased recruiting strength + lower numbers = total double rushing disaster. I was the chapter president and I wound up having to double rush women. What a mess. This was at a large competitive school in the south where each party can involve bringing eighty PNMs through your house.

Our school was implementing RFM that year and there was strong pressure on us to offer invitations to second and third round for women that we did not think were a match and who we could not reasonably handle coming through our doors. We felt that inviting back fewer would mean smaller parties for us than for other houses but that we'd have a better chance of retaining them if we weren't double and triple rushing them, and if the other women under the tent with them were more of our "preferred" PNMs. (We also knew PNMs talked, the "well that chapter invites back EVERYONE" awful tent talk, etc. etc.)

At any rate, we were in agreement with DeltaBetaBaby's argument. Now, with a few years behind me and some perspective, I understand why our HQ and Panhellenic were so adamant that we stick to the RFM figures. (I think we were a pilot school for RFM, so if our chapter went "rogue" it would have messed with things.) I do think there's an argument to be made that releasing more women than RFM recommends is risky but has potential upside.

What was the outcome of this?

DeltaBetaBaby 06-05-2012 07:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by carnation (Post 2150385)
I stickied it.

Oh, I thought I had done something wrong when I started the thread. Carry on.

Greek_or_Geek? 06-05-2012 08:03 PM

I think there are a couple of flaws in your logic.

It assumes that those women will accept a bid if given one by the WRC.We know from experience that so many PNMs will sign a bid card that ranks a choice they won't consider because they believe it will give them a better chance at their first choice. (Whether Panhellenic gives them that impression is a whole other discussion.)

It assumes that a much larger percentage of PNMs are especially strong and especially weak. My experience has been that perhaps 10% on either end at the maximum. Almost all the PNMs will be somewhere in that 80%, although a good number of them will believe they are in the top 10%. :)

It assumes that all similarly ranked PNMs have the same strengths, weaknesses and interests and the chapters (with the exception of the WRC) are homogeneous. In actuality many PNMs will naturally gravitate to chapters with familiar feels (eg: the extra studious chapter, the sporty chapter etc.)

That said, I have no idea what an effective strategy would be. I have to think that it would vary significantly with the campus culture and the attitudes of the incoming PNMs.

FSUZeta 06-05-2012 08:14 PM

On many campuses, if the WRC does not keep within a competitive number of the next lowest chapter, they run the risk of being closed. Even if there is no tent talk(and we know that doesn't happen), the PNMs can tell that the chapter has less members when the members all have to take more than one PNM to rush. I would venture to say the perception would be smaller=troubled=less desirable, whether that is true or not.

The year I was a rush counselor was the last rush for a couple of the sororities on campus. All the chapters still did the Busby Berkley front yard song and dance routines, and it was very apparent how many members each chapter had. The struggling chapters had a look of desperation about them-it was really sad, and I imagine that it was very stressful for their members. Three of the 4 (out of 18) WRC chapters closed that year, and the 4th one the following year. Would RFM have helped? I can't say, but I wonder if RFM will help prevent chapters from getting to the point of no return. I hope so. I think the point of RFM is to help the struggling become (or stay) viable, and it seems to me that the only way to do that is to grow, so that they are nearer to the average chapter size.

DeltaBetaBaby 06-05-2012 09:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Greek_or_Geek? (Post 2150410)
I think there are a couple of flaws in your logic.

It assumes that those women will accept a bid if given one by the WRC.We know from experience that so many PNMs will sign a bid card that ranks a choice they won't consider because they believe it will give them a better chance at their first choice. (Whether Panhellenic gives them that impression is a whole other discussion.)

It assumes that a much larger percentage of PNMs are especially strong and especially weak. My experience has been that perhaps 10% on either end at the maximum. Almost all the PNMs will be somewhere in that 80%, although a good number of them will believe they are in the top 10%. :)

It assumes that all similarly ranked PNMs have the same strengths, weaknesses and interests and the chapters (with the exception of the WRC) are homogeneous. In actuality many PNMs will naturally gravitate to chapters with familiar feels (eg: the extra studious chapter, the sporty chapter etc.)

That said, I have no idea what an effective strategy would be. I have to think that it would vary significantly with the campus culture and the attitudes of the incoming PNMs.

To be sure, I'm not saying "oh, the WRC should cut all the so-so PNM's so they can have better ones". I also know that, in the real world, there is nothing even close to a simple ranking of PNM's or chapters.

My line of thinking is more along the lines of what the WRC should do when women come through who really don't fit well, for one reason or another. The conventional wisdom, I think, is that the WRC should be maxing out their RFM with anyone who meets their minimum criteria, and I'm saying that mathematically, that may or may not be true.


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