To Optimize Fundraising Operations – You Want Me To Do What?

Even if they don’t say it, your employees may be thinking it. You might even find yourself asking “What is my job?” and thinking about how your duties have changed since being hired in your present position.


We run into this a lot when working with our clients. Many if not all of the staff feel overwhelmed while coping with an ever increasing intense workday in fundraising operations.


With the demand to raise fundraising dollars and increase our donors and support base, employees find that job roles which were once clear and concise are now a blurry mess of responsibilities that leave people exhausted at the end of the day.


Vital cross training of employees with documented procedures has taken a backseat to the urgency of getting the job done. As a result, employees find themselves thrust into new roles with the expectation to perform without necessarily having the training to succeed in those roles.


When you cross train employees you increase efficiency and expand each employee’s skill set. This strengthens your operations. Employees leave for various reasons and their workload may need to be reallocated temporarily. People move from one department to another and other things occur which make it necessary to reassign  duties.


You will find that most employees look forward to new challenges and learning new roles, but institutions need to take measures to ensure those staff members are successful in those roles.


Here are 4 questions to ask to get you on the right path…

1.    What is the job description?

Have you clearly identified the job from a standardization and procedural standpoint? With any job an employee needs to know what is expected and what measures are in place to do the job right.


2.    How does the job performance contribute to institutional success?

Everyone wants to feel that their work is significantly contributing to achieving the mission statement. By ensuring the employees understand the importance of the job and how it relates to the overall end result is the difference between engaged, dedicated workers and those that just go through the motions every day.


3.    How is performance measured?

You cannot accurately and fairly measure a person’s performance without clearly communicated performance standards. Only by establishing clear, concise performance standards can you hold someone accountable for the outcome. If an employee does not know what the standards are then how can you expect them to adhere to the standards? Have you taken the time to put clear metrics in place so the staff can self-evaluate their performance prior to their review?


4.    Are you correctly cross training your employees?

“Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don’t want to.” – Sir Richard Branson

By cross training your employees before the need for them to do a job you are investing in their future and yours. It also gives employees exposure to other job functions allowing them to create their own professional growth plan.


As a senior leader in fundraising operations take some time to perform this department assessment and take steps to develop high performing teams in your department. This will allow you to keep up with the increasing demands placed upon your staff.

If you are having challenges with employee morale or want to increase productivity in your department,  contact us at (424)206-5379  or [email protected]  for a free strategy session on Developing High Performing Teams in Fundraising Operations.

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