The Case Of The Employee That Doesn't Fit
I told him about the journey I had to go on to really value sales and creative people (read, major-gift people) the way I valued the finance, business and HR folks. I also explained how, as I did this, it raised the value of these good people UP and produced a better result for the company and for them. And then I told him that my added work, to cover what was "missing," was very small in comparison to the awesome results we were getting.
Then I kindly said that he needed to man up and be thankful for the a good major-gift manager he had in Ann and the wonderful, successful program she was leading.
Bob bought into my rationale and now, every time we get together, we go through the following ritual: I sit patiently while he rants about this same material, I remind him of the points that are true, and he relaxes. It's a great cathartic exercise that works for him and, practically, helps him act in the right way toward his good major-gift manager.
I wish I could get to the other "Bobs" in our sector to do the same thing and stop abusing their major-gift managers. It would reduce so much angst and, instead, really honor people as they should be honored and respected.
Now here's the other side of this situation — the way the major-gift manager handles this pressure from up above.
Some major-gift managers, caught in this situation, handle it with grace, professionalism and strength. They talk back up-line, educating their managers toward the kind of thinking I have written about above. It takes a lot of courage to do this. I applaud and lift them up!
But then, there are those managers who, because they are afraid, simply (a) try harder to be the manager they are expected to be and then (b) turn around and treat their employees with the same disrespect they themselves are experiencing. It is truly an amazing thing. The abused becomes the abuser.
If you’re hanging with Richard it won’t be long before you’ll be laughing.
He always finds something funny in everything. But when the conversation is about people, their money and giving, you’ll find a deeply caring counselor who helps donors fulfill their passions and interests. Richard believes that successful major-gift fundraising is not fundamentally about securing revenue for good causes. Instead it is about helping donors express who they are through their giving. The Connections blog will provide practical information on how to do this successfully. Richard has more than 30 years of nonprofit leadership and fundraising experience, and is founding partner of the Veritus Group.