If you’re anything like me, the main reason we joined a fraternity was for the brotherhood. Each fraternity and each chapter has a different kind of brotherhood. No matter what level of brotherhood your fraternity is on, it is important to maintain and grow it.
So what happens when brotherhood starts to fade away? I’ve seen this happen in my own chapter and I know it can destroy a fraternity. If there is no brotherhood, what is a fraternity?
That’s why we must work to maintain and build brotherhood constantly.
The following are five ways to strengthen brotherhood that has worked for my fraternity, and I am positive it will work for yours, too.
1. Congratulate your brothers for good work
Receiving a congratulations or a genuine thank you can mean a lot to someone, especially when it’s sincere. Not only will they appreciate you going out of your way to say that, it builds an image of you as a leader in their eyes.
According to this great leadership book called Gung Ho! giving “TRUE” congratulations has proven to keep employees motivated. The same tactics work for fraternities and its brothers.
“TRUE” congratulations means timely, responsive, unconditional, and enthusiastic.
When you offer someone a thank you, make sure it has the above four qualities for maximum effect.
Even if a brother is doing just what they are supposed to, or what their positions says they need to do, give them a thank you and “cheer” them on. When your football team is supposed to win, we still cheer their first downs and the team’s progress up the field.
2. Take a retreat with brothers
Plan a weekend during a break from classes to have a mini vacation with your brothers. This will help improve brotherhood substantially with the bonding experience.
During these retreats, you can do anything you want. Depending on where you decide to go, it can be camping, swimming at the beach/lake, or bonfires by a mountain cabin. It’s up to you to plan activities during the retreat.
I would only invite active brothers to attend to focus the bonding just between your chapter. If alumni or brothers from other chapters attend, you are just letting “distractions” in preventing you from maximizing the brotherhood benefits of a retreat.
3. Hang out with each other
It doesn’t have to be a fraternity event to spend time with your brothers. Spontaneously calling up a few brothers to come kick it one night is a great way to build upon those friendships. This is how we build friendships that last a lifetime.
It is so simple, yet I still hear of people who don’t do this. Maybe you can figure out a way to encourage these hangouts by offering attendance points if your attendance policy permits it.
4. Go out to eat after meetings
Everyone is already together so it makes it easy to have dinner with all your brothers at once.
Go to places that can accommodate large groups. Here in Southern California, we go to BJ’s and TGI Fridays often.
Other than eating, you can also schedule party’s or other quick events while everyone is together.
5. Play the game “Assassin?”
When I was first initiated into my fraternity, Delta Sigma Pi, everyone was playing this game I have never heard of before called “assassins.”
Put simply, everyone who participates is an assassin and the winner is the last assassin standing – so you have to kill off everyone else.
To do this, you use creative methods to trick people when they least expect it. See, this game is ongoing and can last for months depending on how good people are.
For example, if you get someone to step on a yellow post it note with the word “bomb” written on, they are dead and out of the game.
If this sounds fun and interesting, look up the rules using Google search or find them on Wikipedia.
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