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Sharpen Your Skills - Etiquette & Protocol
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Rotary Club of New Bedford




District 7950

Founded 1921




Volume 2


Issue 2



C3PO Droid Issue – Etiquette & Protocol



If you remember your Star Wars storyline C3PO was an Etiquette and Protocol Droid. I thought it would be helpful to our new members to discuss some Rotary situations and etiquette that every Rotarian should be aware of.



What to do it you have to leave a meeting early?


It is a Rotary tradition that if you have to leave the meeting early you should find the guest speaker and explain that you have to leave early and apologize for missing their presentation.


(Some clubs apply a “leaving early fine” so be aware if you’re visiting another Rotary Club).



Names, names, what’s in a name?


It is a Rotary tradition that as a Club Member you should know the first name of every member in the club. You don’t need to remember everyone’s last name but you should be able to call all your fellow Rotarians by their first name.




If Tony Soprano was a Rotarian and started to talk about his Waste Management Company he can be fined!


The only time you can talk about your own business or employer is when doing your Classification Talk, otherwise you can be fined. (You can talk about your company with those at your table but if you stand up and start to promote your company or employer that’s a no no.) Exception to the rule occurs if your company is sponsoring a fundraiser and you want to ask for a “moment at the podium” to promote it.



Speaking of fines, or Fine Etiquette.


You should never take a Rotary Fine personally! Rotary finds ways to fine, (does that sound fine???). At the New Bedford Rotary Club we do more Happy Dollars than fines but if you visit other Rotary Clubs be aware that you can be fined for any number of things. I have seen Rotary Fines issued for;


                        Having your picture in the paper.

                        Sitting at a table of all women or all men.

                        Not having your Rotary pin on.

                        CELL PHONE RINIGS DURING THE MEETING (this is one of the few

                                    Fines we will impose and it’s a biggie, $5.00).

                        Its your birthday! PAY A FINE!

                        Looking funny! (Here’s an example, shorts with shoes and socks).


Rotary Clubs fine their members in the spirit of fun. These fines go to people who really need help so always keep a few extra one dollar bills in your pocket when you come to a meeting. (We will find a way to pick your pocket!).



Invocation for All


Rotary is all inclusive. Attend a Rotary International Convention some time and you will see men and women of all races, colors and creeds.


Every Rotary meeting opens with an invocation. It is Rotary tradition, (at least in the United States), to be not only non denominational but non sectarian as well.


If you are asked to lead the Club in the invocation please be sensitive to all religious beliefs. All religions believe in a “Higher Power” or “Lord”.  After all, we are only asking for help, guidance and strength to work for the greater good of those less fortunate.





Don’t forget to send your requests for future issues of Sharpen Your Rotary Skills to Bob.Gencon@gmail.com.