Simone Uncensored

February 6, 2017

Periodic video postings

A new series… Videos that are particularly special to me. Compelling. Perhaps useful. Meaningful. Whatever.

I wept at this one. About trust and love and peace…

To help inspire you and me as we start a day, a week, a month. To help us understand the meaning of trust and its importance in life and work and fundraising and organizational development.

I weep a bit each time. As I think of the world.

Filed under: Leadership

February 1, 2017

Do you read 101fundraising?

You should. International crowdblog on fundraising.

Check out Matthew Sherrington’s “12 insights from the crystal ball: Get your fundraising ready for the future.” 

Share with your boss and your board.

I responded by saying that I particularly #6, #9, and #11. That was my feeling yesterday when I read the blog. Of course, I actually like them all.

But #6, #9, and #11 are particularly special to me. Because fundraising is not that icky thing shoved off into a corner… Fundraising is not a means to our organization’s so very important end. Fundraising – and the philanthropy it generates – is meaningful and special and essential in its own right. Fundraising – the resulting philanthropy – represent the donor’s aspirations. Your NGO is a means to fulfill that donor’s aspirations.

So read. Share. Think. And fix your organization!!

By the way, check out Monsieur Sherrington’s twitter feed… Sharing cool historical facts.

January 17, 2017

Prepping for 2017 Giving Tuesday

It’s never too late to start thinking about big actions, small meaningful activities, etc.

If you’re thinking about #GIVINGTUESDAY for 2017, read these blogs and research first. Because maybe #GivingTuesday isn’t so great. Maybe #GivingTuesday needs to change.

And probably for sure…. your organization needs to think long and hard about how you do fundraising and how you might do #GivingTuesday and………

Giving Tuesday and the when versus why of giving (Nick Ellinger, DonorVoice, November 30, 2016)

  • Starts with: “I like the idea of Giving Tuesday very much – there needs to be a day (actually, more than one) dedicated to giving. That’s why it frustrates me that we are killing it….Killing it in the sense of making it unable to survive.”

Losing Donors in the Sea of Sameness (Roger Craver, The Agitator, December 2, 2016)

  • Starts with: “…abandoning support of an organization is influenced and controlled by the actions the organization itself takes…. Perhaps nowhere are the sloppy, copycat practices of some fundraisers more pronounced that on #GivingTuesday.” READ IT!

Please think. Please review your practices. Please let’s make it better.

P.S. A board member asked me the other day about what I think about “donor fatigue.” And I responded: “Donor fatigue is something we fundraisers and organizations make ourselves. And not because we’re asking. But because we’re doing this work so poorly.”

P.P.S. Do you read the Whiny Donor on twitter. I’m always apologizing to @thewhinydonor. I asked if s/he was actually a fundraiser in disguise – “NO.” I asked if I had ever met him/her – “NO.” Check out @thewhinydonor. Ah tristesse.

January 10, 2017

New stuff that impressed me

Check out The Grow Report. Pam Grow’s stuff is sooo good. I was reading her January 5 new year hello. And the examples she gave. And the book about justice… And the blog roll. And how about your very own “Donor Love Crib Sheet?” Maybe you oughta subscribe?

Pam focuses on the small development office. BUT… I suggest that even the larger offices check out her stuff.

  ♦ 

That Tom Ahern guy has done some very interesting writing recently. I particularly appreciated the following: His newsletter article “HOAX!!!! Raising awareness unmasked.”

And his personal blog about Siegfried Vögele. And his personal blog of January 5, 2017 about communications:  It’s built backwards from your target audience.

January 8, 2017

Vietnam War and trust

New series begins in the New York Times… Revisiting the war in Vietnam and “its consequences for today.”

“Vietnam: The War That Killed Trust.”

We forget history too much. I suppose “everyone” knows WWI and WWII.

But Nam was seminal. The war in Vietnam “changed the way we looked at politics,” and race and so much.

Worth reading and reflecting upon. How the events of 1967 and early 1968 affected that country and this country – and our world.

Filed under: Social Commentary

January 4, 2017

Articles of meaning

Do you know the phrase “rest and rise”? It means not responding immediately…reflecting…then proposing.

I do that with readings. So a couple months later…I’m sharing some favorites from the Nonprofit Quarterly.

Surviving the Inclusion Delusion.” So much talk about inclusion. Now read Jill Barker’s article about her son.

New Research: American Dream is Mostly a Fantasy – Class Matters More.” How many more times must we hear that the American dream doesn’t work so well. When will we every change?

Do you ever host conversations with your staff and your board about these kinds of issues? Maybe this is the way to start the new year? Reading and talking together. And exploring the implications for your beneficiaries, your cause, your fundraising, your organization, your….

Filed under: Leadership, Resources

December 31, 2016

Hope dies last

10 minutes ago I posted a sad and angry blog: Lived experience isn’t what the law proclaims.

But there must be a partner to the sad and angry blog…

“La esperanza muere última.” Hope dies last. So said Jessie de la Cruz as she fought for the rights of farmworkers.

And “hope has two daughters, anger and courage. They are both lovely,” proclaimed Saint Augustine.

I will embrace what Father Dan Berrigan said: “There may be times when we are powerless to prevent injustice. But there must never be a time when we fail to protest.”

I will continue my life in philanthropy because I know what Alfre Woodard knows: “Charity is good, but supporting and creating social change are about power. Power can infuse lives with purpose and dignity. That opens up the possibility of joy. The life of the giver, as well as that of the receiver, is transformed…No matter who we are, no matter how much money we have, whatever our color, gender, age, religion, or language, we can bring change to the world around us. We  can open our minds, roll up our sleeves, and reach out our hands.” (Alfre Woodard in the preface to the most marvelous book Robin Hood Was Right.)

I will continue taking risks. I will speak truth to power. Because social justice matters. As Woodard said, “Creating social change is exciting. It’s proof that we are alive and thinking. What could be beter than to work for a future where fairness is the bottom line?”

I end 2016 with deep sadness and anger. And I begin 2017 with deep sadness and anger — and a commitment to fight on and proclaim justice. Because my hope has not yet died.

Filed under: Social Commentary

December 31, 2016

Lived experience isn’t what the law proclaims

One last comment on social injustice for 2016. One more hope for future years.

We have laws about marriage equality. We have laws against racism and sexism. So everything is “fixed,” right?

No… Lived experience is different than law and regulation. Sure. The law is pro marriage equality and anti racist and pro women’s rights. Well, mostly the laws are kind of that way.

But the lived experience? People of color still experience racism. Daily. Women still experience sexism. Daily. If you’re homosexual or trans or… You still don’t feel safe and respected and …

Read this: Becoming Ugly. Sad. Grotesque. Truth. Anger. Can you imagine? Have you experienced? Do you deny? Do you understand yet? Will they understand? Ever?

 

Filed under: Social Commentary

December 12, 2016

Read research. Learn stuff. Help your NGO.

How frightening if you and your staff colleagues don’t read research. Really frightening.

I’m not just talking about fundraising research. It’s all research. Any research that might be relevant.

Read these articles. What are the implications for your nonprofit organization? How will you introduce this information to your boss and your board and your staff colleagues? How will you apply this research to your NGO?

Human Service Agencies’ Contributions Soar But Retention Rates Plummet for All Nonprofits. (Retention rates – loyalty – are the primary measure for effective fundraising – and any other business!)

Harvard Sciences and Sugar Industry Hook Up to Lead Public Down Dangerous Path.

Public Losing Faith in Higher Education as a Jumpstart to Work Lives

Fundraising Effectiveness Project

Are you reading any of the research at the Hartsook Centre for Sustainable Philanthropy or at the Lilly School?

I read neuroscience marketing research about consumers. Written in a user-friendly way!

Read research! Explore implications of research! Apply research to your work!!!

Any research you suggest? I’ll post it!

Filed under: Research, Resources

December 5, 2016

Building the best organizations

What don’t we know?

How do we recognize that there’s stuff we don’t know — and we don’t know that we don’t know?

How do we confront that we don’t even know that we don’t know stuff?

How do we build into an NGO the concept of regularly exploring / discovering what we don’t know?

And this can happen in every or any part of our work anywhere.

[A conversation I had with Michael Campbell at HFPG‘s consultant workshop that I delivered in early December.]

Simone Joyaux, ACFRE, Adv Dip, is an internationally recognized expert in fund development, board and organizational development, strategic planning, and management.

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