Simone’s Bookshelf: more lifelong learning ideas

Hi again from Simone Joyaux… More lifelong learning ideas. Just a quick run around my office. Authors / sources that I regularly read (or must read very soon!) – just good business stuff! Jim Collins Heath Brothers Seth Godin (His free daily blog and all his books!) Harvard Business Review About the nonprofit sector and fundraising and stuff…just a very very few… Adrian Sargeant and Jen Shang (All their books and articles…And the reports on the website Institute for Sustainable Philanthropy.) Roger Craver (Free daily blog and books) Jeff Brooks and Tom Ahern (Donor-centered communications) SOFII (Showcase of Fundraising Innovation and Inspiration) Moceanic  These are just my top-of-mind this week. But there are soooooo many more. Now for some seemingly unusual – but actually very important researchers/authors – for fundraising… Dan Ariely Antonio Dimasio Daniel Kahneman P.S. Always always remember. While I’m a USA citizen, I was raised in an international household. I present all over the world. And I know very well that the US of A didn’t invent fundraising and doesn’t lead the world’s nonprofit sector.  So please please do not just pay attention to resources from the US or North America. Check out all the fundraising and nonprofit associations in countries around the world.  Yes! Located all around the world. China and Japan. In various countries in South America and North America. Various countries in Eastern Europe and Western Europe. India and and and… So many countries. So much learning. Common bodies of knowledge based on academic and practitioner research. Different cultures and different applications. Different experts and authors and…

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Day in Life – Covid-19 Edition – Cynthia Khoo-Robinson

There’s so much to say about Cynthia. We met through the AFP Cincinnati Mentoring Program and she’s been an amazing mentor to me ever since. She introduced me to higher ed donor relations and stewardship, which was exactly what I needed at the time to become a more well-rounded fundraiser. The photo on the right is the Cincy gang at ICON 2018 in New Orleans. Thank you, Cynthia, for always having my back and sharing your new found routine with us! Cynthia Khoo-Robinson, CFRE, Associate Vice President of Alumni Engagement & Annual Giving at University at Buffalo, Buffalo, New York, USA Cynthia has more than 30+ years experience raising money for mission-driven institutions and causes, and is higher ed fundraising pro. She is a CFRE, a past board member of the AFP Cincinnati Chapter, and a CASE speaker. From Cynthia: Pre Covid-19: I look at my phone and scan my emails, text and WhatsApp as soon as I get up. I try not to get lost in it (which I sometimes have done) as causes me to be late in leaving the house). I Face Time my husband every morning for our drive into work (between 7:30 – 8 a.m.) and every evening, as we live in two different city and state. I get my coffee in the office and start into my emails or conversations with my staff right away. I am in meetings most of the day with hardly much down time to think and prep. Thank goodness for a great team, my #2 and my Executive Assistant who help me stay on point, as I go from one meeting to the next. I spend my days in planning meetings with different teams: annual giving, alumni engagement (regional, young alumni, signature events, life-long learning), major gift officers, campus partners, Deans, Alumni Board president, etc.  I have meetings with the Executive Team every Monday morning in North Campus (my office is in South Campus). Lunch is usually at my desk, many times late and hurried. I usually stay late to take care of emails and prep work for meetings the next day and usually work until 6 – 7 and sometimes 8 or 9 p.m. If I end my day in North Campus, I then get home early (as I live closer to that campus). I get dinner at a decent time and then I hop back online to answer emails or prep for meetings. PreCovid-19, I was traveling a lot. I would be in the office a few days a week, every other week or so. We have alumni all over the country and the world. I represent the university and attend as many in-person events as I can. I was in airports more than in my office until now ☹. Current Situation with Covid-19: As is the case all over the world, we are practicing self-distancing and I have been telecommuting since March 18. I keep a routine of waking up around the same time (actually can sleep for ½ hour longer since I don’t need to drive to the office). I scan my emails and text messages quickly, hop in the shower, fix my hair, apply make-up and get dressed (Business Casual) and I’m online by 8 a.m. The day is filled with Zoom meetings, back-to-back. We are also using Skype for Business and I love the quick chats via text or video. The quick video chats make it feel as if we are popping into each other’s office. Video conferencing has been fantastic and has helped to curtail the feeling of isolation.  But having back-to-back meetings have been draining. In the beginning, we needed to communicate a lot: encouraging social distancing, cancelling in-person events, developing guidelines for telecommuting. As we settle into our new norm, we are learning to schedule breaks in between. Technology is fantastic and the positive outcome of having the whole office work remotely has allowed everyone to get comfortable with video conferencing. It will be a new way of working even when we return to the office. We will be more efficient with this new way of meeting instead of driving between campuses (we have 3 campuses here) and going to different buildings (especially in the blustery winter). As we continue to stay in isolation, we have to continue with our work. Our Major Gift Officers are finding it easier to connect with their donors/prospects as everyone is at home. Some are even having video chats with their donors. Our Annual Giving team has to develop a new focus as we postpone/cancel all mailings, Giving Days and phonathon. Alumni Engagement is ramping up virtual engagement – offering webinars, virtual happy hours, book clubs and online community for mentoring and socializing.

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Covid-19: 7 fundraisers in 7 places

As the tide of the Covid-19 pandemic rolls on across the globe and into North America, it is threatening to crush some nonprofits, while others may find themselves riding on a relatively smooth wave of financial support. Most will find themselves somewhere in between. There are many unknowns and uncertainties as we navigate the stormy seas of fundraising and donor relations in the coming months. Relationship fundraising pioneer, Ken Burnett, suggests the crisis could be fundraising’s finest hour, when we turn to our donors with what he calls a ‘Let’s give before we get, sharing with our friends’ approach’. At the core is the “supporter’s experience that matters most.” Having thoughtful conversations with donors that allow us to genuinely connect and discuss what is happening. Listening carefully what they have to say. How they have been affected. For those who feel forgotten this can be a lifeline. The way we handle the crisis will impact our donor relationships in the future. In this difficult time, I asked more than half a dozen fundraisers, some working on the frontline, others managing staff, and a few involved in consulting, in different regions and countries around the globe, what they are doing differently. Seven fundraising professionals in seven places: Robert Dixon, Director of Development at Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada Melody Song, Fundraising Consultant, Founder & Solution Designer, Berlin, Germany reporting on China (based on interviews with family, friends in the charity sector, and Ying Ye, General Secretary for the Fundraising Innovation Centre, Shanghai, China) Rodney M. Grabowski, Vice President for University Advancement University at Buffalo, Buffalo, New York, USA Anup Tiwari, Board Member, South Asian Fundraising Group, New Dehli, India Deborah Berra, CEO, Stiftung Kindernothilfe Schweiz, Aarau, Switzerland Daryl Upsall, Chief Executive, Daryl Upsall & Associates and Daryl Upsall Consulting International, Madrid, Spain Bill Littlejohn, CEO and Senior VP, Sharp HealthCare Foundation, San Diego, California, USA How did you experience the past few days of the Covid-19 crisis? Robert Dixon in Toronto, Canada: After the initial shock and disruption, the past few days have actually been rather fun. The remote working technology is operating well, food supplies have returned to normal, and it’s been good to have extra time for cooking, reading, and catching up with friends and family. I’m concerned of course about the wider situation, and particularly for elderly relatives living back home in the UK, but clarity from various governments in recent days has been helpful. Melody Song in Berlin, Germany: For me, and many people who have families in China but live in North America or Europe, this crisis has been a non-stop challenge since January! China is getting back to normal after two months of lockdown. Kids are still out of school but there are plans for schools to open on May 1, 2020. There are still tight controls by volunteers in each community about who comes and goes, and residents are still using hand-written passes to ensure strangers don’t enter communities without registration. Overall in the past few days, the situation in China has been uplifting.   Rodney Grabowski in Buffalo, New York, USA: As a leader in advancement, it feels like every day is a week in time given our current dynamic environment. The past few days of the current pandemic has had a dramatic impact on my focus. My first priority is the health and welfare of my team (approximately 130 individuals) and secondly, to our constituency. We have been simultaneously redefining how we work, what is important and then prioritizing in ways that allows us to be sincere and productive during this crisis. Engagement, solicitation and stewardship practices have been upended and revisited based on our current reality and are often changing on an almost daily basis. Anup Tiwari in New Dehli, India: The past few days have been full of anxiety for family, friends, and generally the underprivileged in India and around the world. Personal anxieties have been addressed by social distancing; however, the large daily wage-earning population in India is not able to stay hungry in their temporary shelters and are rushing to reach their native villages or towns. This puts them and the rest in huge danger. Personally, working from home during crisis means longer working hours as you can’t be in the field and have to manage all from a lockdown confinement.  Deborah Berra in Aarau, Switzerland: I followed the development of the corona crisis early on in Italy and Ticino (Italian part of Switzerland) and decided on Wednesday, March 11th 2020 that we would start with homeoffice. As an employer, I have a duty of care towards my employees. We are basically set up in a way that work from home is possible. We all live in Zurich, but work in Aarau. In addition, all of my employees are mothers. So it’s good when one has the opportunity to do things from home. Nevertheless, we still had to organize one or two things before we were fully functional. Daryl Upsall in Madrid, Spain: The past days have been kind of surreal. On March 11, after a lot of traveling for work, my partner and I headed for a long-planned break at the beach and then couldn’t travel back to Madrid. Currently, we are on complete lockdown with mandated self-isolation, and people here are abiding by it very strictly. It’s like a post-Franco legacy. When orders are given, they are abided: empty streets, no cars driving on the streets, shops closed. Very different, for example, in the UK, where people were still gathering in sunny weather and having parties. Yesterday, I went to the grocery store and everything was super organized there, fully stocked shelves, staff sanitizing the cart for you before you touch it, and cheerful staff. While the clapping from balconies started here, there is no spring to volunteering out of solidarity happening as is the case in other countries. Bill Littlejohn in San Diego, California, USA: Beginning March 16, we converted our monthly e-newsletter (Philanthropy Notes)

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