Keys to getting and keeping people:
Find them by: posting flyer, talking to people about it, get in the local papers, they need any kind of story and it reaches a lot of people, get on TV, and make sure your web site is updated. You know there is a page on the MWC site with contact people on it. WHY are there not more people listed. If you're not up there get up there today! Nothing attracts a crowd like a crowd. Let them know who and where you are.
When contacted reply right away, don't put it off cause you're busy, invite them to a battle or building meeting or your house to look at your ships. Give them a copy of the Welcome to the MWC DVD.
Get them to a battle. Either let them run your ship or someone should have a spare ship for them. Help them get it going and battle it. Sink them if you want (I always do) but go get the ship for them, don't make them go swimming. This is the best way to hook someone into the hobby. If you can get a ship in there hands and let them shoot you up, when they look at the holes you'll have them.
Many people will stop at these two steps because they can't get a ship at Walmart. Fine, but if you've done a good job word of mouth might find someone else they talk to contacting you.
Once they buy a ship you have to help them put it together. Some (Kevin Bray) have told me that helping people turns into doing it for them. I agree, but if you know how to do it and they don't do part of it as an example. I've had many guys at my "Shipyard" I do the wiring for them while they work on another project. I show them how and why so they'll know latter on. We build guns as a team assembly line style. If it takes them a year to get the ship on the water and then it does not work they'll show up next year looking to sell it. While he is building keep him coming to battle and keep letting him use the spare ships. This way it feeds his hunger and gets him working. Be carful to make him split time so he does not have a "free" ship and stop work on his.
After the ship is done take it easy on them in battle for a while. Some guys could care less if the sink every battle, others hate it. Make sure you know where the new guy fits in. Go get him in the last battle of the event then he has time to fix the problems before the next battle.
The BIGGEST thing that needs to be done is have an event every month. Have a battle even if 4 ships are all you have out there. Get together at someone’s house for building meetings; again only two people are a meeting so have one. If you don't have events to look forward to you lose interest in what you are doing. It helps to have peer pressure to push guys to get things done or improve their ships or their skills. Think of some of the guys we have lost in the hobby, why did they leave? I know a few that left because it was a lot of work to just battle at NATS and maybe go to the Fray. If you don't get together you'll leave. Either grow or die. Each local area needs to make it their collective goal to get 2 new ships on the water every year and not lose any ships from the year before. If you see a guy stop attending get on him and find out why get him back before he's gone for good. If he has found out this is just not for him get his stuff on a for sale list so another new guy has a jump on it.
Things you need to NOT do:
Pick on one guy over and over.
Fight about rules in front of the new guys. Make sure the new guys know the rules as is. Inform them of things that are "legal" but borderline and try to keep them on the right side of the rules.
Too much Allied/Axis hazing, some is
fun but don't go over board.
If you think person X is a pain in the butt, just stay away from them as much as you can. People can pick up real quick on conflicts and will not want to be involved with them. If you are the person X that is a pain to someone cut it out. Go talk to them and settle up or at least come to the understanding that we're not going to get along but will be civil at events. You don't have to love everyone but you should be able to be civil to everyone.
Be unhelpful, don't keep your stuff secret and to yourself. Share your new ideas with others. Can't say I have ever seen this happen, most of us like to brag about our new better way of doing things.
Every battle should have at least one spare ship and at least two people seeing a battle for the first time. If not no one is getting the recruiting job done and your area will start fading away. It is in your best interest to have more local people battling. If you can't think of a new guy that is building a ship that you have recruited or an old guy you have helped bring back in the last year you are not doing your job. Get moving and find some new targets.