Lucy Gower, Blogger on 101 Fundraising

Making assumptions – a fast track for failure

By Lucy Gower • January 18, 2017

Have you ever, in your first few months of a new job, asked a question and been told, “That’s just the way we do things here”?
Have you ever been the person frantically multitasking to stay on top of things who responded to the keen newcomer, “That’s just the way …

The trouble with vanilla…

By Lucy Gower • October 17, 2016

Over the years I’ve observed sparky, funny, passionate and clever people morph into vanilla shells of their former selves as they enter their office to get on with their professional job of being a fundraiser.
It’s a strange phenomenon. Somehow through our drive to excel in what we do – to …

Pratfall – how mistakes make you more attractive

By Lucy Gower • April 21, 2016

Pratfall is a term coined by psychologist Elliot Aronson to describe the bias of how your attractiveness to someone or something increases or decreases after making a blunder or a mistake (or a pratfall).
The impact of pratfall depends on how you are already perceived. If you are well regarded, a pratfall …

It is what it is. What are you going to do about it?

By Lucy Gower • February 1, 2016

Steven Covey in his habits of highly successful people talked about spheres of influence. To paraphrase, his point was, to focus your energy on the things you can change in your sphere of influence and don’t sweat the things you can’t.
Let’s apply Coveys principle to fundraising. In the UK there …

This Christmas there is a #manonthemoon

By Lucy Gower • November 12, 2015

On the real and virtual high streets of the UK, John Lewis – an employee owned UK department store – owns Christmas. The launch of the John Lewis Christmas advert has become an important part of British Christmas preparations. This years advert ‘Man on the Moon’ was released last Friday …

The curse of the 20:2 principle

By Lucy Gower • July 16, 2015

Do you remember being 6 years old? Did you ever experience the 20:2 principle?
20:2 is, when as a child, you show your parents or your teacher your math homework. There were 20 questions. You got 18 right. Yet rather than getting a ‘well done’ for the 18 right answers, the …

Silver bullets and cross stitch

By Lucy Gower • April 16, 2015

At every conference I have ever been to there has been a session called ‘the next big thing’ and delegates turn up expectantly hoping for a silver bullet that will give them all the answers.
Last week was no different, at e campaigning forum (ecf), digital campaigners, volunteers and fundraisers gathered …

Do you notice when you are being nudged?

By Lucy Gower • January 16, 2015

Every year a collection of new or recycled buzzwords arrive on the fundraising circuit. Last year they were ‘behavioural economics’, ‘neuroscience’, ‘nudging’ and ‘decision science’. All the conference sessions with these words in the title were full; people crammed into these workshops like sardines to hear the about the latest …

Lets put the fear in fundraising

By Lucy Gower • October 16, 2014

As fundraisers we know rationally that people make decisions based on emotions, but how often do we acknowledge when this happens to us?
Yesterday I had a moment of fear as I stood on stage at IFC and looked out into the audience.

Can anyone write a good direct mail pack?

By Lucy Gower • August 7, 2014

Unless you have been living in a hole for the last month you will have heard something about the latest campaign ‘proud to be a fundraiser’ from the Institute of Fundraising in the UK.
The essence of the proud to be a fundraiser campaign is not some naval gazing back slapping …

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