Change actually IS good

Change actually IS good

Chapter Leadership Brief 11.5.2021

By Michele Hall-Duncan, AFP-NYC Secretary
CEO and President of enCourage Kids Foundation

I was reading a recent Classy blog which highlighted Big Results for Nonprofits That Embrace Flexible Work Environments. The blog went on to extol the virtues of remote work as it pertains to overhead reduction, employee retention, and employee morale. With a fundraising turnover rate of nearly 20% I thought about how my own staff has been affected during the pandemic.

At the beginning of 2020, I led a team of 14. As of next week, there will be six employees on the payroll. Half of them were furloughed due to revenue decreases during the pandemic, with the remainder leaving for various pursuits.  I responded by increasing the number of consultants to balance out areas of need, however the adjustments to this new world order have been quite challenging.

With the continued uncertainty around returning to the office, I began to embrace remote work as a long-term option for the organization. One opportunity that I did not foresee with the remote work option is the ability to expand geographically, and to ultimately build a more diverse team. Without geographical constraints there is an expanded pool of viable candidates that can also help advance your organization’s IDEA objectives, including race, ethnicity, gender identity and disabled individuals for whom traditional commuting may prove challenging.

As always AFP-NYC is at the forefront of highlighting the most relevant topics in the fundraising today. I look forward to hearing more about how we can all continue to understand and embrace IDEA and move our organization’s forward.

Please join me at “Breaking Down Barriers: Evolving Beyond the Origins of Philanthropy” Thursday, November 18th from 8:30 – 10:00 am.   Join a conversation with philanthropy and DEI experts to explore ways to substantive change to make the field more inclusive, diverse, equitable and accessible.  To register and learn more, click here.

Be well,


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