Let us not pray to be sheltered from dangers but to be fearless when facing them.
What if you were fearless?
What if WE in the nonprofit world were absolutely, no holds barred, balls to the walls FEARLESS in all that we did?
What if you said no to some donors-you heard me, even in this economy- so you could make a space for new donors? The new ones that are better aligned with your strategy and focus and your future vision. The ones that want to collaborate and communicate effectively so you can do philanthropy better.
What if your mission and vision was bigger and badder and bolder than anything you have ever heard in all your days? Not because you want all the glory but because you are willing to tackle the big complex problems that require big complex solutions and your playing small does not serve the world.
What if you began to partner with communities, neighborhoods or populations that were not well liked or stigmatized because in your HEART of HEARTS you knew that is where you needed to be? That those challenges were the ones your organization needed to face.
What if you killed some legacy programs, you heard me STOPPED them– so you could create more relevant and effective ones? Is a 30 year old program still effective and relevant? Maybe…Maybe not, be bold enough to question and brave enough to act.
What if you let some staff, volunteers or leadership leave your organization….maybe even the Founder? Not because you do not value their wisdom and institutional knowledge or their years of sacrifice, but because a part of holistic growth means making space for new voices, and new vision designed by the next generation…and sometime it’s just time for people to go.
What if your organization was fearless?
What if you stood up and integrated political and educational advocacy into every aspect of your organization? Because you know that for justice to be served laws need to change.
What if you invested in technology? Not played at investing, but did it- whole hog, because you know that your amazing staff has made miracles happen with 20 year old databases and little technological support. You can only imagine the magic they could spread with the right tools in their capable hands. Let’s not even discuss what they could do with new media utilized strategically to leverage resources.
What if you invested in R&D? What if you had a room full of crazy creatives that were able to try and fail.. and try and fail over and over again until they succeed in ways you could never imagine. What if your organization valued R&D like Apple or HP or Google?
What if you nurtured yourself and your employees better? What if you let your staff take art classes, work remotely, work flex hours, bring their pets to work, create their own job titles, take mission leave beyond regular vacation- to help them intentionally step away from the creation of strategy or the raising of dollars so they could reconnect and renew their hearts and minds. This is a marathon, not a sprint.
What if it was time for a re-invention? The old ways are no longer working or getting you the required results. Can you look yourself in the eye and admit it’s time to create a new life, new vision, and new mission….to enter a new space?
What if you stayed hungry and foolish? You know like you were in the very beginning when it was 3 of you in your garage working day and night to push your mission forward.
What if you were radical?
What if you were bold?
What if you were brave?
What if you were fearless?