Seth Godin wrote in a blog post entitled In Search of the Minimum Viable Audience, that if you endeavor to reach the maximum audience you will tend to dumb your message down, average it out, and try to please everyone.
He said when you try to engage as many as possible you will never accomplish what you set out to do. Or, more importantly, what you should be doing.
But, if you focus on the minimum viable audience, “you will double-down on all the changes you seek to make. Your quality, your story and your impact will all get better.” Your impact will be greater, the word will spread and your engagement will grow.
So, if your lodge is trying to create involvement by having as many social activities as possible, then you may be hampering Masonry’s core purpose to help men become better men and better Masons.
If Masonry’s mission is as we say, “to take good men and make them better,” then our focus, our efforts, our programming and our activities should all support this mission.
Leadership author Jim Collins, in his book Good to Great, introduced the Hedgehog Concept. This concept maintains that an organization should attain “piercing clarity about how to produce the best long-term results,” in relation to its mission. Once the organization has this clarity, then it should resist the temptation to do anything else.
Holding picnics, spaghetti dinners, pancake breakfasts, etc., in the attempt to involve more Brothers without a solid program to educate them in the art of Masonry, may make your lodge enjoyable, but not successful as a place for Masonic improvement.
Gather as a lodge, engage in dialogue about your Masonic purpose, come to an agreement about what actions should be taken, resolve to take those actions and then execute them. (watch a video about D.A.R.E.)
If you find your “minimum viable audience” and please them with Masonry, the rest will follow.