I’m leaving fundraising. I’m going back to university, to study for my Masters and, fingers crossed, my PhD.
While I’m naturally super excited about this major life decision, I’m a bit nervous too. After all, I’m walking away from a stable job in a fantastic university, to go and be on the other side of the fence – eating beans on toast and cramming in the library at 2am.
Well ok, it’s perhaps not quite like that. But it is a massive change and will cause considerable upheaval for me. So why am I doing it?
The reasons behind it are complicated, more than a little personal, and frankly quite boring for anyone who isn’t me. One of the main factors however, is that I’m no longer content to just keep repeating the same patterns over and over, as I seem to be doing. That doesn’t make me an effective fundraiser, and it doesn’t make me a happy one either.
As I mentioned in a previous post, inertia is the common enemy of anyone working in charities today. We have to continually strive to overcome inertia in our supporters, our colleagues and ourselves. It’s far too easy to simply tweak last year’s version. And because of this, we make the same or similar mistakes repeatedly. We try not to; we try to be innovative and fresh with each new academic or fiscal year, but it doesn’t always work out that way.
So I’m making a big change. I’m hoping that, if the stars align for me, I’ll still be contributing to the fundraising profession in future (albeit as an academic, rather than a practitioner). And who knows, perhaps I’ll be back writing appeals and thank you letters before long! I do love writing…
I’m going to try and stay active on Twitter and this blog. I’m still passionate about fundraising, and I plan to stay that way. I want to keep myself informed and connected, and keep up the relationships I’ve made in the past few years. So although I’ll not be in an office anymore, I’ll continue yelling into the blog-void when an issue or event catches my attention.
I’ll say a huge thank you to everyone who’s read this blog so far, tweeted to me, or chatted to me at CASE conferences. The biggest thank you of all goes to Kurstin Finch Gnehm, my fundraising mentor and an all-around amazing individual. You rock, my friend.
So I guess all that’s left is to ask that you remember me when I’m desperately looking for fundraisers to take part in my thesis research. 🙂
See you soon…?