Monday, September 3, 2012

Want to Achieve Something Great? Remember WHY Your Organization Exists in the First Place.

Thomas Friedman had a very compelling editorial in the New York Times on Sunday called, It's Still Halftime in America.  Here is the introduction.
"I sat through three days of speeches at the Republican convention here, but I confess that my mind often drifted off to thinking about Neil Armstrong, the first man to set foot on the Moon.
Armstrong’s passing really touched me, especially coinciding as it did with this election. Why? Because the America that launched Armstrong was an America that was embarked on a great and inspiring journey — one that spawned breakthroughs in science, medicine, computing and physics that made our country, and the world, a better place. What journey are we on today? Balancing the budget? Expanding health insurance? These are vital tools, but healthy to go where and balanced to do what?"
Don't worry.  Friedman is not bashing the Republican Party and neither am I.

Instead, Friedman is frustrated with the lack of VISION from BOTH parties.  This struck and resonated with me.

This is not a political blog.  Instead, I'm sharing Friedman's piece with you because I think he is on to something very important - the Why.

As leaders, we have to want more than a WIN, we need to remember WHY we are fighting in the first place. 

Raising more money.  Engaging more members.  Increasing the budget.  Working long and hard nights.  These are noble pursuits IF they help us to achieve our missions.

Never forget that we fundraise, market, sell, and engage more members in order to achieve an END, i.e. to ensure that fewer children go to sleep hungry at night.  To get better health care for the elderly.  To clean the air.

Don't fall into the political trap of getting stuck on winning for its' own sake.  Never forget WHY you do the work you do.  Keep it front and center in your heart and mind.  This will surely help you, your colleagues and your organization to reach the moon.

Warmest regards,



eclaire said...

SPot on Jocelyn. Fundraising is servant to philanthropy. We're aren't simply raising money because we want money. Vision, and executing on that vision, is key.

Jocelyn said...

Thank you for your comment! It means a lot to me!


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