Fundraising is a bit like a game of Operation; several different wires connect in different ways, but all part of one body. Or, fundraising is like the factory floor of a charity; chaos, collaboration, constant motion…. you get the point. A more frequent conversation around fundraising is that the once harmonious team is now siloed. Almost on a daily basis, I get the question: ‘how do we stop our fundraising department from becoming too fragmented?’
Sure, like most of us lately, I hear myself blaming any sort of annoyance on Covid, whether it’s train strikes, NHS waiting times, Aldi running out of kitchen paper towels and…that Covid has made fundraising departments overly fragmented.
The pandemic has provided greater flexibility in working arrangements – nothing beats working-from-home Mondays and Fridays, but it has also created smaller offices, team days, set office days, or even fully remote-working patterns in some cases.
Has the time and space for precious collaboration been put in jeopardy?
Each fundraising stream has a function. However, what makes fundraising incredible is when it all works together to create an optimal functioning body – I suppose we are back to the Operation metaphor. There are certain fundraising departments where solo work is a necessity. Major donor fundraisers need to travel to steward key donors, legacy fundraisers need to be able to give attention to those supporters who are honouring their loved one’s last wishes, and so forth. If we look even further into the microscope, we see that each fundraiser has a varying way of working, because people are different and there is now greater flexibility in the way in which we work.
So, has Covid made fundraising too fragmented?
No, I don’t think that’s possible.
Fundraising has had, in many cases, a tremendous bounce back from pandemic-related circumstances. Fundraisers have never had more to do, and they are innovating how to effectively maximise this surge of support. There is still a place for collaboration – virtually and physically – but now, there is a space for the individual fundraiser to operate in a way that works best for them. There are different streams and different people in the wonderful world of fundraising, but the goal is, and always has been, the same.
It has always been about the cause and beneficiaries, and that will always keep fundraisers working together for the same aim.
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Tara Patel is a Senior Consultant in Fundraising Appointments. With a curious mind, a background in research and a desire to make a positive impact on the fundraising sector, Tara is perfectly placed to help you find your ideal candidate or next fulfilling fundraising role. You can connect with Tara on Linkedin or why not send her an email.