“It seems that development positions continue to be an 18 month cycle? Is it organizations not giving them enough time to gain traction or development professionals not as strong as their resumes?”
I’ve been following this particular AFP “On Fundraising” LinkedIn group topic for the past three weeks and quite a few folk have weighed in with their opinions. Frank Donaldson, President at Institute of School and Parish Development (ISPD) in New Orleans offered up his thoughts on why development staff turnover is so great within Catholic institutions.
I think he’s nailed it – and I don’t believe that these reasons are limited to Catholic institutions. What do you think?
1. The leadership of that Catholic institution (pastor, principal, board, pastoral council) does not really understand Development.
2. Everything is measured by the amount of immediate money that “must” be raised.
3. There is no written strategic plan in place with measurable, reasonable outcomes.
4. No training is provided for new DD and for continued professional growth.
5. The DD is hired and the people who have been involved in the past seem to wash their hands of the responsibilities and take the attitude, “I am glad that is out of my court. We finally got someone to handle all of that.”
6. The entire effort is simply one fund-raiser after another fund-raiser and the “nickel and dime” mentality never ceases. Total burnout.
7. Too many “guarded kingdom” to overcome and therefore the lack of acceptance of the new DD’s vitality, energy and creativity.
8. Not enough team building on all fronts and this is really all about people engagement.