It had been a couple of hours since Kenny had checked his watch. It had shown 03:00.

The club was full. Getting more packed, even, as the night went on. “Where do all these people come from?” he asked himself. All these clubbers. Members of the club.

He poured a glass of champagne and leaned back in the couch. He felt like he owned the club.

“Well, I do own a club, actually,” he remembered. It was an online club. Different, yes, but kind of the same, too. Firewalls instead of fire codes, etc. And he wanted it to be packed with members, too.

Members were on his mind. He had checked his stats earlier in the day and saw that his member count was down. It was a key metric.

As he sipped his champagne he went into full analytical mode. The music receded as he saw the whole system of the club play out in front of him.

He saw booking agents working the phones months before, kids putting up posters all over town weeks before the event, DJs on the earliest planes out of the last city they had played, beer distributors pulling trucks up to the back of the bar in the morning, sound guys adjusting levels in an empty room in the afternoon and dancers applying makeup after dark.

Each part of the system had its own process. They each had to work perfectly to get the maximum number of “members” in the club and to get them to stay as long as possible.

Kenny was sympathetic. He’d never thought about a club owner. Now that he did, he felt respect. It was an orchestra the club owner was directing. Not easy. If any of the pieces fell apart the whole thing suffer. What if there were no DJ? What if Kenny didn’t update his site? How would it impact their respective clubs? They would bleed members.

Kenny pulled out Evernote and wrote, “Club. Members. Orchestra. Which processes for more, longer members?” Then he turned off he put his phone back in his pocket and got up to dance. The headline DJ had just taken over the decks.

Questions for discussion

  • What do I do when I see that my active member count is dropping?
  • Which processes make up my system for acquiring and maintaining members in the past?
  • How do I monitor the processes? What do I do to improve them?