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    « Events, Donors & More Lessons Learned: The Tent Card Trilogy | Main | Measure up! »

    December 04, 2008


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    Dear Laurie,

    I would have to agree that leadership and management is a skill that requires effort, time and training. Goodness knows I'm learning as I go and you raise some great points. You know I'm an Executive Director, the thousands maybe hundreds of thousands of people who read your blog might not know I have this perspective.

    Now I'm going to challenge you...get ready for it comes...

    I hired someone who I felt had great potential. I told myself she could be great if I mentor and help her along the way? She talked about passion and enthusiasm and a hunger to learn. She was HIRED! It was a disaster. I tried for nine months. So much effort and energy to help her become what I thought she could be. I was too generous, it cost the organization a lot of money, my board was questioning my judgement. I took too long to let her go. Hiring her was an expensive mistake. My job became helping her keep her job. That was Bad management. My job is to advance the organization - not her.

    On the flip side... Her replacement has talent and skills but came from a series of very dysfunctional fundraising shops (that is probably another whole blog)This is where I asked myself ...What could she be? Well she has training through a program similar to Humber, a few battle scars, a sincere willingness to learn and it is working out very well. Now my new hire is actually making me look good! Bringing new ideas forward and making my job easier. This makes it easier to be generous with her.

    Tip to newish fundraisers: do what you can to make your bosses job easier!

    So I guess it comes down to balance. Sometimes managers can't be nice people, they have to make tough decisions. However, if we can provide opportunity to new fundraisers who have true skill, tact, grace, drive AND they truly want to help us advance the organization - then it is easier to help them become what they could be.

    That's it. you touched on something very relevant right now, I am a better manager for having had the experience. We all need to keep learning.

    Great blog...keep writing.
    shameless plug:

    Kimberley - your situation is a perfect example.

    That said... it took me about 10 minutes to stop laughing at the "thousands and thousands of people who read your blog" comment.

    Thanks for the laugh - and the great feedback!

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