Alzheimer Society of Nova Scotia

YOU, Celebrating Philanthropy

In Uncategorized on June 19, 2012 at 6:54 pm

We all know the old sports saying: there is no “I” in “Team.” We preach it in hockey rinks, remind our children of it at Guides/Scouts, and hope that they remember it when they leave home, out into the real world. But once off the playing field, sitting in your office, is your organization (aka the Team) filled with Individuals, or team players?

Too often we work in silos. Departments responsible for one piece of the puzzle, solely focused on their success at completing that piece, that they never really looking at the whole.

In fundraising, YOU may have encountered this with your Executive Director, Departments of Marketing, Administrations, Programs, etc. The list can grow to the size of the whole organization.

I was reminded of this awhile ago when an organization sent out a Tweet in regards to its opt in/opt out option for donors. (Click here for the tweets, the story and the follow up by the organization, very well summarized by Agents of Good partner, John Lepp) In the tweet, the language refers to a “rate” (which is the organizations monthly donation level). But never mentions the donor/that it is a donation. To me, it was obvious from the language that the tweeter probably worked in the Communications department, and was doing their job: responding in real time on social media. Vice versa, the Fundraising department hadn’t spoken with Communications about donor-centric language.

Once again, a case where the departmental “I” was placed before the organizational “Team.”

I have been thinking more and more about how every person in an organization is part of TEAM PHILANTHROPY. Whether YOU are responding to tweets, answering the phone, or tax receipting, YOU are part of the philanthropy world. But as a fundraiser, have YOU spoken to colleagues about that? Or vice versa, if YOU work in a non-profit, have YOU been thanked for being part of it?

Although already close to three months into the “year,” the Fund Development department here at the Alzheimer Society of Nova Scotia is initiating 2012/13 to all staff and volunteers, as the “Year of Celebrating Philanthropy.” We have started to have meetings with the Team to break down silo’s, to understand the stakeholders they meet with and to acknowledge them as ambassadors of our organization and thus, unofficial spokespeople to our donors.

We have more planned that I will share later in the year. But I challenge YOU to take time to speak with your co-workers to get them on TEAM PHILANTHROPY. YOU can do it.

*For daily inspiration on Philanthropy, I suggest following @JohnLepp & @brockwarner on Twitter. Thank you both for speaking (answering my tweets!) with me at the time of the Tweet mentioned in this blog post. As always, you can follow the Society too for more information about Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias @alzheimerns and myself @SAPL for some fundraising tips everynow and again*

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  1. […] a fundraiser, I offer gratitude on a daily basis. To the staff who continue to celebrate philanthropy; the volunteer making sure labels are on envelopes and of course to event participants and […]

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