The Clock Is Ticking
“Time flies never to be recalled,” wrote Virgil.
Not a week goes by that I am not reminded of this. And I have flashbacks to the days in my teens and even 20s when I often heard, but never comprehended this.
There is a pattern and cycle of life. In our profession, like in all professions, there are some people and organizations that just seem to be able to do more and achieve more.
“Time flies. It's up to you to be the navigator,” shares Robert Orben.
There is great wisdom there. There is no escaping time. But how we use it is an investment to the degree that we plan and that we move with urgency.
Working with clients, one of the first steps is to learn their cultures. How they function. And how fast they function.
“I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough. We must apply. Being willing is not enough. We must do,” said Leonardo da Vinci.
We like to move fast. We like to be prepared, but move fast. Recently we spoke with a potential client who was in a stalled campaign. He wanted coaching for him and his staff. The reality is, frankly, that he had 15 years tenure in the profession and should have been performing at a higher level. Our suggestion was a strategic campaign plan and counsel, and coaching him as we drove this campaign process and dollars for his worthy organization. That was too much, he just wanted some coaching. We did not feel we could justify the return for the investment his organization would make. But he found a coach.
Be like the duck—calm on the surface, but paddling fast beneath the surface to get to where you are going. And know where you are going.
Calendar or fiscal year, you are only months away from the greatest season to thank donors, cultivate prospective donors and to secure gifts. What are your plans? Are you ready? Is your team ready? How fast are you moving?
“Everyone should have a sense of urgency—it is getting a lot done in a short period of time in a calm, confident manner,” said Bob Proctor.
Let’s apply get-it-done fundraising for our worthy organizations, compelling missions and those we serve! Not moving with urgency each day, each week, each month and each year is doing them a disservice.
Looking for Jeff? You'll find him either on the lake, laughing with good friends, or helping nonprofits develop to their full potential.
Jeff believes that successful fundraising is built on a bedrock of relevant, consistent messaging; sound practices; the nurturing of relationships; and impeccable stewardship. And that organizations that adhere to those standards serve as beacons to others that aspire to them. The Bedrocks & Beacons blog will provide strategic information to help nonprofits be both.
Jeff has more than 25 years of nonprofit leadership experience and is a member of the NonProfit PRO Editorial Advisory Board.