Hi there! I hope that you are all well,
Several postings ago I went through 10 possible reasons why members may leave your synagogue. The 2nd factor that I mentioned was that:
“Different style – At times people leave (to another shul) because the style of the synagogue doesn’t fit with their conception of a synagogue.”
This one is actually a tough break. There is often very little you can do and I will explain why. If you and your leadership have made a pointed decision to follow a certain vision for the shul, you can’t twist and turn like a pretzel just to please every member. It’s important to give your mission a fair shot. Following a principled path may cause you to lose some members, but if its a grounded mission it will pick up more members in the long run.
I would, however, suggest the following strategy: B.T.P (Bavorn or preempt the problem). B.T.P. is a great technique that can solidify your membership loyalty whenever you know something risky is about to come up. For ex. if the Rabbi knows that he’s about to unfold a program which may irk the Phillips family, he should approach the family and preempt the problem. Let them know what you’re about to do and ask for their patience. Many of your members will appreciate that thoughtfulness and heads up.
Identifying the correct strategy and style for your synagogue needs a lot of work – but it can be okay if the style of service you choose doesn’t work for everybody. The Talmud in Shabbos 17a says that Hillel found it exceptionally difficult to sit before Shamai. Different strokes for different folks.