Loyalty Over Retention

stock-photo-17005101-customer-loyaltyWorking for a nonprofit can involve a multitude of individuals that are not just working to have a job, but have a true passion for the cause of the organization.  Not only do you work with individuals that care, but you are surrounded by supporters who want to help your cause.  This truly is what makes working for a nonprofit so rewarding.  However, to say that this is always the case is hiding from reality.  However, let’s use our energy and focus on the positive and not waste our efforts on ways to change the negative.

As rewarding as being around a majority of individuals that go great lengths to support the cause, this is not always the case.  Individuals may want to support the cause when they are triggered by a tragedy, a marketing strategy that brings an emotional connection, or for whatever reason, not by their own initiation.  How do we know if this is a one-time offer or if your efforts will create a lasting impression and worth the effort?  However, it is hard to determine how much support they are willing to give your organization, often times it may be discovered when you receive a negative reaction.

Working on nonprofits also entail working in a more efficient fashion, saving in ways that often include cutting labor.  Not only is your close coworkers or even yourself at risk of being laid off, people are asked to do more in their current positions.    Individuals are having to adapt to industry needs and changes are always occurring.  Donors who may be use to incentives to thank their good deeds, may no longer be offered such an incentive in order to save on cost.  This may cause the retention of individuals both employees and supporters to be a challenge.

We often hear the cost of gaining a new donor is a lot more than retention.  Although, retention efforts in ensuring a dissatisfied donor may cost more than obtaining a new, excited donor.  This is not to say that we should not value everyone and not try hard, but there is a point where we have to move on.  Give those that are loyal supporters for your cause, who have a deep and caring understanding for what you do to be given the efforts and gratitude that they well deserve.

Let’s focus on those individuals, whether internal or external customers, who exuberate the passion.  The magnitude to the employees that support those individuals will give a lasting energy that will be hard to burn out.  Although, making someone happy can seem nearly impossible, remind yourself of the cause and the loyal supporters that surround you.  This will give you the energy to fight through challenges.

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