Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Letter to the Prime Minister from the Boomers

I'm not usually one for passing on the jokes that go round the internet but this, far from a joke is, a mon avis, a perfect example of the application of Keynsian economics and, although some of the maths is wrong, might just work. Being a boomer and of the 10 million I rather like it:

Dear Mr. Cameron,

Forget the Big Society and instead, implement this suggestion for fixing Britain's economy.

Instead of underwriting a hundred billion to the banks that might well squander the money on lavish parties and unearned bonuses, use the following plan.

You can call it the Boomers Retirement Plan:

There are approximately 10 million people over 50 in the work force.

Pay them £1 million each severance for early retirement with the following stipulations:

1) They MUST retire - 10 million job openings - unemployment fixed

2) They MUST buy a new British car (if there any) - 10 million cars ordered - Car Industry fixed

3) They MUST pay off their mortgage (or buy a house if they're renting) - Housing shortage fixed and the building societies will have money to lend to first time buyers.

4) They MUST send their kids to school/college/university - Education and maybe even crime rate fixed

5) They MUST buy £100 WORTH of alcohol/tobacco a week ..... and there's your money back in duty/tax etc plus they won't live for another 20 years needing the NHS and social care.

Power to the grumpies (fundraisers or whatever)

Sunday, 12 June 2011

The Merry Go Round

We all know that attrition amongst givers costs a hugh amount of money and the replacement of a supporter is generally far harder to achieve than the retention of someone who is already giving to the charity. Increasingly trustee boards and senior management team understand that we have to invest in cultivation, stewardship, good communications and take time to develop two way relationships with our supporters.

So why do charities continue to hemorrhage fundraisers? Just look at the pages of Third Sector or Civil Society and you seen experienced fundraising practioners, managers and directors changing jobs at alarmingly increasing rates. Ruth Ruderham from Christian Aid to British Waterways, Mike Palfreyman from Help the Hospices to a children's hospice,Liz Showell from Children's Society to Alzheimer's just in one issue. And, of course, you can effectively double that number because of the vaccancies they leave behind.

Investing in staff development, continuing professional development and the opportunity to try new things can significantly enhance individuals' enjoyment and lengthen the time that they stay with an organisation. I used to say of sales staff that if they moved on in under two years we'd done something wrong and we were losing money. If they were still there after seven years I might begin to wonder why. Managers and trustess have a duty to optimise investment and make sure fundraisers stay around, productively for far, far longer.