Reading this article, I was struck by the following passage:
If you own the organization’s success, the game changes for you, and you’ll find a dramatic increase in the freedom you have to lead and produce results. Why is this so? Ownership of the larger vision gives greater perspective and ability to contribute across the board in a way that ensures performance. Think about it – when you own your leader’s intentions as your own, you inevitably grow and expand. It’s similar when you own the results of your fellow team members – you will have unmistakable power to speak up, take risks and generate creative actions to ensure success. It’s a mindset where everybody wins.
In light of our recent conversations about breaking down nonprofit silos, it is becoming increasingly important for all nonprofit employees to own the business of fundraising. We call this creating a “culture of philanthropy“. Regardless of what department you work in, the “fundraising isn’t my job” argument just doesn’t work anymore.
Do: Break down your silos and measure what matters.
Don’t: Encourage departments to work in isolation of the strategy or one another.
Perhaps the greatest leap you will ever make toward true integration is to eliminate the barriers that keep your people (and thus your campaigns and messages) operating independently of each other.
Nonprofits tend to be internally divided according to:
• Donor pyramid levels
• Program and service areas
• Offline and online channels
The lack of a unified effort toward shared goals results in wasted investment and missed opportunities. If the measures of success are customized to each department or program unit and don’t roll up into broader goals, then even well-meaning teams are unintentionally being given incentive to work against each other. Make it a top priority to realign your internal structures and metrics before launching your next major campaign. Arrange planning meetings with key representatives from your executive, development, and program teams. Set the strategy and allow individual stakeholders to execute their own portion accordingly. One overarching goal will allow each area to move in concert. Having a centralized strategy that each staff member supports within his or her area of responsibility will be the foundation for every other decision you make.