After 20 years in the corporate world (telecom industry in software development and test), I realized there was more to life than chasing a title and a big paycheck. What started as volunteering at a mobile soup kitchen in Dallas, led to a passion of using my creativity and love of people to help others. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t wake up one morning and decide to sell everything and live in poverty so I could help the homeless. It just happened that way (yes, including living at the poverty level). But despite going from a six figure income to making $12,000 that first year I decided to accept the job as Development Director, I was never happier.
In the past 10+ years, I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to work with some great leaders, not only in the nonprofit industry, but also in philanthropy, local government, PR and the media. I’ve also learned from some not so great leaders, but I have to thank them for not only showing me the errors in their ways, but also helping me to solidify those things that are important to me. I am a very loyal person and looking back now I see there were times that that loyalty may have caused me to neglect my own sense of integrity. But I’ve learned from that as well.
I believe that life, business and even the development and growth of nonprofits is all about relationships. Whether with grant writing, volunteer coordination or donor cultivation, a focus on people and their needs is what will build better, more supportive relationships. This same principle applies to the clients you are serving.
Years ago I put the tag line, “The best way to be blessed is to be a blessing.” at the end of my email signature, and that daily reminder (actually each time I send an email) has sculpted my vision and my future. Let’s talk about how we can be blessings, together.