What We Are Not
It is important not to overgeneralize, but here are three things this particular club usually isn't:
1. We aren’t really a place for people to learn public speaking. We actually go to great lengths to keep our meetings short. The reason is that, as business leaders, our time is expensive; if there are several of us in a room, the collective lost opportunity cost per minute adds up. (Time is money, as they say.) If you want to have people hear you speak about random subjects, there are many better opportunities, such as toastmasters and most other service organisations.
2. We aren’t cutthroat. The dragons in Shark Tank are. After all, they want selfish profit. By contrast, our motto is “service over self.” We want money to be well spent, but don’t want profit, and are largely here to have fun. (That sort of comes naturally given that our job is to spend money!)
3. We aren’t professionals at giving. There are plenty of foundations that have a full time staff to oversee projects they have funded, and to select new projects to fund. By contrast, Rotary is designed to take very little time. Many members look at it from the perspective that they need to eat anyway, why not go to Rotary? Our main jobs are still our main jobs. Rotary is mostly a relatively fun way of us contributing something else to society while networking in fellowship with other like-minded business persons.