The nonprofit sector has been holding me against my will for the past 14 years.
You know how they say every joke has some kernel of truth? Well that’s true here. I’ve tried getting out of the nonprofit sector two times in my young adult life.
The first time was during my senior year of college. By that point, I’d held an internship at a nonprofit organization for over 5 summers. I also had a nonprofit work-study job, a 4 year stint with a local org doing client advocacy work (by teaching people how to ask the right questions).
Working for a nonprofit organization, you learn how to pick and choose your battles.
There are the small ones, like deciding if you should say something to your teammate about their less-than-stellar proofreading. Or sending that email about keeping the office microwave clean!
But as you get further in your career, bigger battles fall onto your lap. You might find yourself convincing your org to implement new system, proposing a shift in how your org executes its mission, or even moral conversations around diversity and ethics.
INFP. The Myers Briggs test didn’t tell me anything I didn’t know. But it gave me a way to fit my skills, professional experience and personal interests into a neat little framework. Nearly 10 years later, I don’t think much has changed.
On this blog, you know me as Dee. In the real world, I’m a business systems manager for a nonprofit organization. It’s a catch-all title, meaning I manage our Salesforce database…but also, any other systems we might adopt. Because #multiplehats.
Getting here —in my career and this blog— hasn’t been a total accident! So I thought I’d share a bit about what that path has looked like for me.
When you work for a nonprofit, self-care is a must.
In a sector ripe with burn-out, it’s no wonder there are zillions of articles practically screaming for us to relax! This line of work gets hard, especially when you’re a well-intentioned professional who just wants to save the world.
What expertise do you bring to your organization? Because most of us with any sort of technical knowledge – event planners, grant writers, system admins – all have one big thing in common.
People always need something from us.
As our orgs grow, so do the needs of our staff. If you’re starting to feel overwhelmed with requests, or find yourself repeating the same instructions to people over & over… then it may be time to streamline. Let’s turn that task into a process!
Why a process?
A smart process does wonders for our productivity. Guidelines & timelines help keep us accountable, minimize errors, and set expectations at our org.
The result? We’re enabled to produce our best work in a timely fashion, without having to lose our minds.