Without Passion, Organizations Perish
9. Bring a person your organization regularly serves into your environment. There is nothing like looking into the eyes of one of the people that has been helped by your organization. Bring them in, if possible, and sit them right down in the middle of the sacred halls. Have them interrupt the process of running the organization. Place them in a place (meeting) where everyone needs to focus on the real thing that is going on here. Talk to them about their journey. What was their life like before your organization helped them? How is it now? How do they feel? Get in touch with all of these things. Don’t be afraid of it. Embrace it.
10. Keep talking always about people served and donors. Remember, everything you do is about the people you serve and your donors. It is important to keep that focus.
11. Get away from your desk and regularly talk to others about how excited you are about the people you serve and your donors. It is so easy to get wrapped up in the work and be stuck to your desk all day or in meetings. Plan to be absent from your desk. Put it on your calendar. Get out of your office and be with your staff for no reason but just to talk. Spread your joy. Share a story of how a person the organization helped really touched you. Talk about a donor and how encouraged you are about their help.
12. Get emotional about things. This isn’t just about plans, charts, grids, logic and the mind. It is about people. Allow your heart to be broken by the tragedies of life. Celebrate the victories. Get excited. Jump up and down. Be human. When your employees sense that you do have blood running through those veins, that you can cry and laugh, that you are real … when they sense that, you will be on your way to getting passion back into the workplace.
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.