10 Jul Positive Reinforcement…
Unless you have been on another planet for the last few months you will be more than aware of the negative stories being told in the media about the charity sector and fundraising in particular. Now, I’m not suggesting the sector didn’t need a wake up call and in some places need a total overhaul, but for most fundraisers who are trying to the do best job they can, they feel under increasing pressure to justify themselves to anyone that will listen regarding the work they do. Fundraising responsibly and professionally with the aim of making a difference in the world is not something the press are keen to focus on.
What is the impact of this?
In the short term it’s demoralising and demotivating to fundraising staff working hard to reach often ambitious income targets in a tough financial climate.
In the long term, I worry that it will put off those individuals considering a career in the sector all together.
A career in the charity sector is hard work but fulfilling. The feeling I used to get when the income from the event I had organised, or the Appeal mailing I had sent out starts to come in is one of the best I’ve ever known. But to counter this with constantly having to justify yourself to a public that views you with suspicion and negativity would certainly have taken its toll.
So what can we do now?
This is a time when every charity needs to show its donors the impact they genuinely make, but also to a time show their staff the difference they are making too. Valuing fundraisers is vital if charities are to continue generating income.
From creative, dynamic job descriptions to appraisal systems, education and training opportunities, we need to do all we can to show those already doing a great job how important and valued they are. At the same time it will help to show those considering a charity career that it is a positive move with the potential for personal development as well making the world a better place – win win.