At the end of the day the questions we ask determine the people we will become.
When interviewing for a development position at a nonprofit, a candidate questions everyone who interviews her about the institution’s goals. When every answer points to the same goals, she accepts the job. Consistent goals indicate strong leadership. Consistent goals mean she can concentrate her efforts on obtaining donations for the goals and not trying to figure them out. She anticipates and discovers a gratifying work experience.
Are you asking enough questions? Are you asking questions that lead to thoughtful discussions? Are you encouraging donors, supporters, and members to ask questions? Questions open doors and create relationships. To help you and your supporters ask excellent question, I developed a new e-book, 100+ Questions to Ask Before You Invest in a Nonprofit.It’s free.
Besides asking about the organization’s goals, here are three more questions from100+ Questions, and excellent answers:
1. In what three ways could I be the most help here?
Excellent answer: Specific, realistic, and insightful actions that you can do.
2. Tell me about others who work toward similar missions? What’s good about them? What challenges you about their approach?
Excellent answer: Information about the culture at this and competing organizations that helps you to determine where you fit.
3. Does every staff member donate? Why are why not? What is the range of staff gifts?
Excellent answer: High staff giving indicates that the organization is addressing realities of funding. It demonstrates an “all hands on deck” approach to resource the organization.
Karen Eber Davis provides customized advising and coaching around nonprofit strategy and board development. People leaders hire her to bring clarity to sticky situations, break through barriers that seem insurmountable, and align people for better futures. She is the author of 7 Nonprofit Income Streams and Let's Raise Nonprofit Millions Together.
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