Professional Development

November 29, 2016

If “they” fail the 20 questions….

Maybe you should find a better place to work.

Visit Tom Ahern’s new website. Pretty cool. I’m impressed.

Check out “The TEST Your Boss MUST Take!” 

Click here. Take it yourself first, of course. (I’m taking it shortly. Not sharing what I score but making darn sure that I learn the right answers if I fail questions!!!)

Share with your staff colleagues. (Maybe do it as a group in secret somewhere?)

Make sure your fundraising boss (and CEO) take it and learn this stuff and expect you to know the answers and make sure you know the answers. And teach the questions and the answers to your fundraising colleagues and your fundraising boss and your executive director / CEO person.

It’s kinda okay if your boss fails the test, but only if your boss is the ED/CEO. It’s only okay if your ED/CEO boss fails the test if that person says: “Well, of course I don’t know all the answers. But I expect you to know the answers and explain to me. And when you tell me to do stuff, I do it. Including that letter that I thought was kinda icky. But I sign it because you know the answers to these 20 questions. Thank you thank you. I was so smart to hire you!”

And if your ED/CEO doesn’t say what’s above…And continues fighting. You fight back. FIGHT BACK!!!!! No more whiny fundraisers. Your job is to fight back and explain and pass on your learnings. And if you fight for a couple years (yes…it can take that long) — and still no change in behavior from the bossies… THEN FIND ANOTHER JOB. YOU DESERVE BETTER!!!!

August 15, 2016

Your grit score

Do you know that there’s a 12-item GRIT SCALE?

I didn’t know that. But I know now, thanks to some colleagues in Cohort 25 at SMU. Was it you, Jordan, who mentioned the grit scale?

Here’s another version of a Grit Scale. Check out Dr. Angela Duckworth’s info about grit scales.

There’s even a grit scale for kids, too. True grit: check your kid’s resilience…

Do you have grit? Am I gritty? Hmmmm…… What is grit anyway? 

All about remaining committed to goals – so you can actually achieve those goals. In one article, grit is defined as “passion and perseverance for long-term goals.” And Woody Allen kinda defined grit when he said, “80% of success is showing up.”

Check out this article in Frontiers in Psychology… “The grit effect: predicting retention in the military, the workplace, school and marriage.”

Filed under: Leadership, Research

June 27, 2016

Will you still love me tomorrow?

Thank you Ms. Pam Grow and the Grow Report. The headline… Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow… So of course, I remembered Carole King.

Why does Pam say this? “Commercial businesses retain 94% of their customers while the nonprofit sector retains only 41% of their donors.”

I keep promising to write a series of blogs or newsyletters about fundraising….using song lyrics. Try this scenario!

“You’re So Vain You Probably Think This Song is About you”  … Donors are yelling at us. Hear them shout. I give through your NGO to fulfill my own aspirations. The song is about me, the donor. Not not you the organization.

“You Don’t Own Me” … You don’t own your donors. Your donors choose. And Lesley Gore is speaking for every single donor everywhere. “You don’t own me. I’m not just one of your many toys. You don’t own me…Don’t tell me what to do.”

“Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?” Who’s singing here? Maybe the fundraiser, alone in her office. “Tonight you’re mine completely. You give your love so sweetly….But will you love me tomorrow?” But maybe this is the donor singing. Just think about that. Tonight, your NGO seems to love me completely. The thank you letter was great. And a board member even called to thank me. But I’ve been abandoned as a donor before. You don’t tell me how you’re using my money. You don’t know what customer centered and donor-centered mean.

“I Can’t Make You Love Me.” Look in the mirror, Ms. Organization. Think long and hard Mr. NGO. You can’t make me love you. You can’t “educate me” so I love you. Stop it! You actually make me disrespect you.

Thank you, Pamela Grow and the Grow Report…. for motivating me to write more stories with song lyrics.

Hey Simone Uncensored readers, visit the Grow Report. Check out the 2016 Donor Love Toolkit.

 

May 11, 2016

I’m on a cool list from a cool guy with other cool people!

Who should influence the future of fundraising? Just read Mark Phillips “Queer Ideas” fundraising blog.

I’m so proud to be on the list with other cool people like Shanon Doolittle and Rory Green and Roger Craver and Jen Love and more…

Here’s why you need to read this blog:

  • Because Mark himself is marvelous. Check out his blogs and tweets and his company, Bluefrog.
  • Because you’ll meet some people you may not know. You can visit their websites and tweets and blogs and…
  • And please please… Watch the imbedded video, Fundraising Theatre 2012. If you haven’t ever seen Tony Elischer, watch close. Tony died too young and too early. But he invented and created some of the most fun and illuminating and weirdly different presentations and extravaganzas that you’ll ever see.
May 2, 2016

Where can you get money?

Step #1: Read this issue of The Agitator about giving across generations. Read my response, posted at the Agitator.

Step #2: Study the infographic.

Step #3: Review the original report from Blackbaud.

Step #4: Share the infographic with your boss, the program staff, and the board. Explain the implications. Offer insights. And, of course, make sure your development staff understands, acknowledges, accepts, and performs accordingly!!!

Step #5: Stop the crap. (“Oh my gosh, we need to focus on millennials and get gifts from them.”)

Step #6: Pay attention to research. You know: FACTS. SCIENCE. Destroy ill-informed personal opinion as soon as it rears its silly, ugly head.

Step #7: Please please please. Could we please build a profession? Could we please behave like professionals?

Thank you.

 

April 25, 2016

Simone presenting soon

May 12, 2016: Simone and Tom, Ahern and Joyaux – Keynotes & workshops for AFP Detroit.

TASPJ                     May 16, 2016: Simone with AFP Cincinnati.

simone-joyaux-board-whisperer

June 1 & 2, 2016: Simone at the first ever Western Canada Fundraising Conference

screenshot of front of WCFC postcard 1

April 6, 2016

Check out these good reads

Thanks, as always, to the Nonprofit Quarterly. I hope you subscribe. You really can’t afford to miss the daily online feed and quarterly print publication.

Have your board members read an interesting article — and then talk about the implications and the strategic questions for your organization. Do this regularly! And with your staff, too.

Check out this article – also good for a conversation.

Filed under: Resources

April 5, 2016

Good stuff from AFP International Boston

I like conferences when I learn something new. Or get a new idea about how to apply and express something old. Or reinforce an angle or an approach. So here’s some stuff I liked a lot at the AFP International Conference in Boston, March 19 – 21…All in the Rebels, Renegades, and Pioneers Track.

Leadership by Marcia Coné [Making change easier]

  • Seeing from 30,000 feet, then deploying on the ground. Leaders have both perspectives.
  • Normative behavior is safe and secure. Change is: Turbulence (rocking the board). Inviting controversy. Forcing discomfort. Causing difficulty. Upsetting people. Causing a problem.
  • Research says that change makers have these 5 qualities: Persistence. Biased to take action. Transparent. Optimistic. Adaptability.
  • Visit Marcia’s website. Attend her workshops. Read her stuff. Great info. Great presenter.

Why business won’t change the world [Michael Edwards]

  • Read Mike’s marvelous book, Small Change – Why Business Won’t Save the World. 
  • 3 sectors: Government. Business/for-profit. Nonprofit (also called civil society). They are different! And the differences matter. Today’s blurring of lines are rather troublesome.
  • Business (the marketplace) satisfies wants and needs at a price.
  • Civil society (the nonprofit or NGO sector) provides entitlements without price. The strength and impact of the nonprofit sector may actually be diminishing. See Mike on YouTube.

Raising money for justice [Roger Craver, Jennie Thompson, Daryl Upsall]

  • Solidarity. Movement. Activism. Fighting for justice. Roger, Jennie, and Daryl have worked in social justice and movements for years and years. Oh the stories they told!
  • All movements begin with a small group of people seeing something wrong. Grassroots organizing then morphs into organizations. And then the long march into the political arena. Citizens > Political > Mainstream
  • Threats: Intimidation by government and special interests.

Gender equity…diversity…dominant and non-dominant groups [Laura Liswood]

  • We need to have enough people involved to make change. Just one “different” person doesn’t work.
  • The dominant group’s performance is improved by the non-dominant group. Heterogenous groups are great! To make change in any organization requires much more than diversity. Read Laura’s book The Loudest Duck.
  • What do you think women leaders – of nations – are talking about? Check out Laura’s book.
  • Check Laura’s presentations on YouTube.
March 21, 2016

Read and share – and fight for these!

Three really great blog reads.

Read. Learn. Share with staff colleagues, bosses, and boards.

Explain why. Help staff, bosses, and boards understand and accept and own and focus on the right stuff.

That’s your job. To use the right stuff from the right people. Explain the why. Help all those others accept and own and focus on the right stuff, not the wrong stuff.

This takes time. And I’m not talking weeks or months!

Persevere!

And if you can’t get this done… Look in the mirror first. Maybe you’re the problem. But maybe you’re not the problem. Maybe they’re the problem.

Find an ally (or two) to help you help them get it.

And if that doesn’t work…. Look for another job. You deserve better.

Filed under: Research, Resources

February 22, 2016

Relationship fundraising: Finally!!! Research so we can do it even better

Guru Ken Burnett wrote the book, Relationship Fundraising. Seminal book. Important that every single fundraiser read it.

And now, the gurus at the Centre for Sustainable Philanthropy, Plymouth University, U.K. have done the research. Download the relationship fundraising research now. Read it. Apply it! Visit Adrian Sargeant, Jen Shang, and Ian MacQuillin, who are doing work that needs to be done.

Shame on us fundraisers and our fundraising:

  • Fundraisers and fundraising rely too much on war stories and what others have done before. Yes, those others were (and are!) often marvelous. But where’s the research?
  • Fundraising is the biggest industry in the world running on war stories and conventional wisdom,” someone recently said. (But I don’t remember whom!)
  • Research from the Science of Philanthropy Institute at the University of Chicago notes that, overall only 7% of the surveyed nonprofits consult research before making fundraising decisions. That’s awful! And only 45% of the survey participants said they sometimes look at research.

This is no way to run a business!!!!

So read the research about relationship fundraising. Read the commentary at Critical Fundraising here and here.

Let’s make fundraising more effective. Please.

 

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

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