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February 2019

July 2019

Keep your eye on the prize...

Gaping Void challenge and reward

Sometimes the slog becomes overwhelming for fundraisers. Meetings, negativity, bureaucracy and battling silos can be too much, even for the best of us.

That’s why last week’s webinar with Emily Petty had such a focus on reflection, growth well-being and re-energising. Missed it? Don’t worry – you can watch a recording here.

This week I’ll be talking to Lianne Howard-Dace who explains the process she used to help tackle the slog and internal battle to make changes to a historic fundraising campaign in decline.

The reward?

A breakthrough that resulted in a better supporter experience, improved internal working and, most importantly halted the decline in this multi-million pound campaign. 

So whatever project you’re working on, join us on Wednesday 31 July at 1.30pm when we’ll discuss:

·      Why ideas are the easy part (see Lianne's excellent preview post here)

·      How you need to use insight and implementation to put your ideas into practice

·      Three useful models to help you do this

·      A case study applying those models

·      Tools and takeaways that you can use immediately

You can sign up for free by clicking here now (and don't worry if you can't make it, still sign up and we'll send you a recording).

I do hope you'll join us!

Why supporter experience starts with team culture (free webinar)

Click here to register for the free webinar on Wednesday 24 July.

There is no doubt that fundraiser’s want to improve supporter experience, deliver engagement and raise more long-term income.

Everyone is talking about it, but so few (if any) charities have actually cracked it. There are some excellent products, services and solutions available to fundraisers. Yet, I hear of so many engagement initiatives failing or stalling before they’ve even began.

Why is this the case?

I’ll be sharing some thoughts in the coming weeks, but at the top of the list is the failure to build the right culture in the team that has to deliver on improving supporter experience and engagement.

In our webinar next week, Emily Petty will share four key tools that can help you on this journey.

One of the most interesting pieces of work in this area came from Google. They looked at what makes their teams effective.

The surprising result?

It wasn’t who is on the team, but more about how the team members interact, structure their work and view each other’s contributions.

The research discovered five key dynamics that set successful teams at Google apart:

  1. Psychological safety: Can we take risks on this team without feeling insecure or embarrassed?
  2. Dependability: Can we count on each other to do high quality work on time?
  3. Structure & clarity: Are goals, roles, and execution plans on our team clear?
  4. Meaning of work: Are we working on something that is personally important for each of us?
  5. Impact of work: Do we fundamentally believe that the work we’re doing matters?

Number one was by far the most important factor and from my own experiences it makes total sense. When I’ve done my best work it is when I’ve been part of a team I trust, respect and feel safe in.

So how do we create that psychological safety in the teams we want to engage with to improve the supporter experience?

This needs to be much more than just letting people know they are safe. You need to demonstrate it through your behaviours and actions.

How can you do this? Here are some thoughts to get you started:

  • Reward risk-taking – how do you support people to take risks? You want to encourage your team to admit mistakes, to ask questions and to offer new ideas. Think about how you reward and recognise this in people.
  • Demonstrate vulnerability – mistakes happen. Teams that are open about this and don’t blame and criticise are likely to thrive. Don’t be afraid to admit when you’ve got something wrong and to ask for help when needed.
  • Call out negative behaviours – the make or break time is when someone demonstrates behaviours that risks the psychological safety of the team. How people react to this and how you as a leader deal with that in a way that maintains the safety of the team is crucial.
  • Challenge and speak truth to power – this doesn’t mean we want teams that only agree with each other. You need to critically assess any idea and project and to be able to share any concerns or potential issues. Avoiding groupthink and encouraging different opinions is essential for any leader undertaking change.
  • Support each other – setting clear responsibilities and providing support to those who ask for help is key to building trust.

Before you start planning the operational delivery of any project, spend as much time thinking about how you will create the right culture within the team to make that project a success.

For more info and ideas on how to do this, please do join Emily and me on Wednesday 24 July at 13.30. Together we’ll guide you and explain how you can build the right team culture to support your supporter experience and journey efforts.

For more info on the other webinars in the Supporter Experience Summer School and Summit, check out my last post.

Supporter Engagement and Experience Summer School and Summit: a series of webinars and workshops to help you

Gaping Void Culture Drives ResultsImage from:

Over the last year I’ve talked to many charities and fundraisers who are ambitious about improving their supporter experience. They’ve got the desire and intent to move to a new fundraising model based on engagement, but it is proving hard to do. I hear the following problems coming up time and time again:

·      How do I influence colleagues and show them the benefits of integrated journeys and working?

·      Everyone in my charity is so busy – where can I start and include them in a way that doesn’t stop them doing the day job?

·      We’re so siloed and I can’t get different teams to work together. This also leads to the issue of setting objectives, KPIs and budgets to match.

·      We don’t have the data / insight / systems / processes* to make informed decisions and act on them (*delete as appropriate).

·      A team complains that this segment are ‘their supporters’ and aren’t willing to share.

·      My director/manager says they want to increase engagement, but I don’t have any budget!

Do any of these sound familiar? If yes, then the good news is that a: you’re not alone and b: they are solvable!

As I’ve been listening to fundraisers, I’ve also been asking questions like:

·      who is doing this well?

·      what lessons can we learn?

·      what are the pitfalls?

·      how can we work differently?

·      what insight do I need?

I've made it my mission to help you answer these questions. Why? Because when we do answer them, it opens the door to new and better ways to deliver supporter journeys and experiences.

In recent weeks I've been taking the time to listen to some incredibly smart fundraisers who also have interesting, novel and effective ways to tackle some of these problems.

Most importantly, these aren’t just career consultants. They’ve been at the coalface and implemented the ideas they’ll talk about. They’ve also made some mistakes too. You can read a bit more about the Summer School squad below and what they’ll be talking about on their webinar.

They’ve also agreed to join me on Wednesday 11 September, at our first ever Supporter Engagement Summit. Here, we’ll go into more depth and give you a taster of some of the ways you can tackle the issues you face.

I look forward to you joining us on the webinars or seeing you in person at the summit.

Webinar 1: Creating positive purpose – introducing four key tools to help you manage cultural change (register here now)

Cultural change expert Emily Petty will talk through what she has learned about cultural change and share four key themes:

Re-boot – creating space to reflect, take breaks and be productive

Re-Connect – building trust and connection to help break down silos

Grow – being curious, how to expect and celebrate failure

Re-energise – how resilience can help you get unstuck and make progress

Emily brings a wealth of fundraising experience, most recently at The Children’s Society were she played a key role in developing and implementing a new supporter engagement strategy. Read her full bio on the webinar registration page.

When: Wednesday 24 July, 1.30pm UK time

Register now for Emily's webinar

Webinar 2: From idea to impact in fundraising appeals: how changing the way you do things changes results (register here now)

Fundraising is going through a rapid period of change. Charities need to use insight and agile working if they are to thrive in the engagement era.

In this webinar, Lianne Howard-Dace will explain why ideas aren’t the problem. She’ll also discuss why we need to focus on the ‘how’ and the value of coaching, as well as sharing case studies from her vast public fundraising knowledge.

Lianne has over a decade of front-line community and events fundraising experience with charities such as Christian Aid and Depaul UK. Find out more about Lianne’s experience on the webinar sign up page.

When: Wednesday 31 July, 1.30pm UK time

Register now for Lianne's webinar

Webinar 3: New challenges need new ways of working and problem solving (register here now)

Eleanor Gibson will share some of the tools and techniques she’s used at Plan UK and CRUK to improve supporter experience.

Eleanor believes in the power of cross-functional working groups and quick experimentation to get things done. Learn how you can harness some of the tools to engage your supporters.

Eleanor Gibson is an innovation influencer in the third sector who shows charities that innovation is for everyone, not solely the largest organisations. Find out she has helped many charities on the sign up page.

When: Wednesday 7 August, 1.30pm UK time

Register now for Eleanor's webinar.

Summer Summit - sharing tips and techniques to help you improve your supporter experience

Wednesday 11 September - 09.30-12.30 - The Book Club, Shoreditch

Come join us at this free event, where we will share some ideas and tips on how to put the theory in the webinars into action.

It will be a fun, interactive session and we'd be delighted to see you there.

Register for your FREE place now.