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A Leader’s Job is to Bear Pain … Not Inflict It

I came across some old notes (1998) on Robert Greenleaf’s seminal book, SERVANT LEADERSHIP. As with many great books, the message is in the title/on the cover.

Greenleaf suggests a domain of leadership grounded in a state of being, not doing. He goes on to say “The first and most important choice a leader makes is the choice to SERVE … and being a leader has to do with the relationship between the leader and the led.”

SERVANT LEADERSHIP is a small pamphlet (only 37 pages long), but powerful.

“The essence of leadership is the desire to serve one another and to serve something beyond ourselves, a higher purpose.” – Robert Greenleaf

Note: Somehow, the idea of a leader’s job being to bear painnot inflict it … came from SERVANT LEADERSHIP and one of my all-time favorite books, ONCE AN EAGLE, by Anton Myrer, an amazing book on ‘leadership’ as seen through the eyes of an army leader who rises from the ranks of Private in WWI to General in Vietnam.

As a leader, a parent or a coach … the idea of ‘servant’ and ‘serving’ seem to be more about bearing pain than inflicting it.

Balance vs. Integration

At a company meeting last March 1st (at Notre Dame), I had a chance to talk with the team about the whole Work-Life Balance thing.

To me, it has always been way more about INTEGRATION … rather than BALANCE.

For me, it was always about the entrepreneurial adventure and the integration of family and boxing and travel and good health.

Stew Friedman, who is a Wharton School Professor, has just come out with a new book called LEADING THE LIFE YOU WANT: SKILLS FOR INTEGRATING WORK AND LIFE.

I saw this post at Forbes from Dorie Clark and am just starting the book.

Two great teaser quotes:

“The people who are most successful in terms of having a significant IMPACT on the world are those who embrace others parts of their lives, rather than forsake them.”

“That was the big motivating idea: to cut through the common wisdom that you have to give up everything in order to be successful.”

I fought the work-life balance thing for a long time. ‘Balance‘ time with family, work, travel, working out, six weeks at Notre Dame, etc.

It finally dawned on me that having family members work with you in business, taking grandkids with you on trips, taking a mini-sabbatical at Notre Dame to coach allowed great time for writing and thinking, etc. or way more about INTEGRATION. Friedman talks about the term ‘work-life balance’ needs to be overhauled and the implication that we can (or should) appropriately balance our personal and professional lives all the time is faulty.

It’s probably worth ordering the book just to get the thinking behind this pretty big idea.

One last quote:

“The people who are most successful are those who figure out ways of bringing the different pieces together in ways that are mutually reinforcing.”

Just Engage

30 years ago, I tried to create THE IDEAL DEVELOPMENT OFFICE (IDO) for Catholic secondary schools. That subsequently morphed into a Major Gift Process and then into a Funding Roadmap … which is probably in its 10th (?), 30th (?) iteration.

Here is the latest change … and it is not made without a great deal of thought and input.

We are changing Green #2 from JUST VISIT … to JUST ENGAGE.

While JUST VISIT is a specific part of ENGAGEMENT… it is a lower hierarchy.

JUST ENGAGE reinforces at the highest level the importance of ENGAGEMENT, MAXIMIZING RELATIONSHIPS, VISITS, DIALOGUE, CONVERSATION, and more.

fi_funding_roadmap_100614click to download a copy

If you have not seen ON ENGAGEMENT (or maybe just haven’t read it in a while), now is a really good time to review.

On Engagement

For Impact Funding Roadmap – A History

Quick Background: This Funding Roadmap has gone through so many iterations over the last 30 years. It started as the Ideal Development Operation in the early 80’s with our work with Catholic high schools. Originally, it was almost all ‘green‘ … focused on funding and fundraising. The IMPACT drives INCOME epiphany changed that thinking in the early 90’s. This version (which could legitimately be v30) has been taught, trained and shared with thousands. Each word has been purposely chosen (and most have been a battle between Tom and Nick). It ain’t perfect and it will probably be tweaked again.

Special, Special, Special Note: Although I’ve tried to take 40 years of fundraising, sales, entrepreneur and business experience and simplify it into 3, 3 and 3 (with some subsets) … there is still maybe too much for many of our Type A, ADD-challenged readers/users.

Here is a SHORTCUT:

Blue #1 Red #3 Green #3
Simplify Message Determine Top 3 Prospects/Champions Just Ask

How to Make Your Story Awesome

I’m defining STORY as a point of view – a way in which you choose to weave together facts. A set of glasses through which you see the world.

  • EVERYTHING is a story (awareness/mindfulness).
  • Your get to CHOOSE story (control).
  • As a leader, it’s up to you to LEAD the story for the organization, for your team, and for prospects (strategies). Lead!!!!

(Recorded August 21, 2014, Nick Fellers)
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Right click and save to download show notes.

Just Ask – Quotes

 

You’re in SALES. Get over it!

 

“If you don’t ASK, you don’t get.”
– Gandhi

 

Ask and it shall be given.
Seek and you shall find.
Knock and it shall be opened to you.”

– The Bible

 

“Rak B’ vakaysh!!
ONLY ASK!”

– Hebrew

 

“Ach Direach Cuir Ceist!!”
(But Only Put The Question)

– Gaelic

 

“SPEND MORE TIME
WITH BETTER PROSPECTS”

– Brian Tracey

 

MAXIMIZE RELATIONSHIPS…
AT THIS GIVEN MOMENT!

 

DON’T MAKE DECISIONS
FOR YOUR PROSPECT!

Raising Money with Martial Arts Wisdom

It happens at every organization, every day, every where. A founder, executive director
or fundraiser is trying to gather support (financial and otherwise) from someone, such as
a board member or community leader. He or she should be the perfect prospect and easy
visit … instead we encounter ‘objections.’

I’ve always struggled with this concept: objections. We have a terrific opportunity. The
people with whom we visit (prospective investors) WANT to SAVE LIVES, CHANGE
LIVES and IMPACT LIVES. What are widely viewed as objections are more often (1)
real questions, (2) ways of saying “I don’t understand” or sometimes even (3) “I don’t
understand but I want to help so let me suggest a lot of stuff that I’ve seen work
elsewhere.”

How you address these situations is critical. For that, turn to philosophy + martial arts.
Turn to Aikido. Aikido translated literally means “the way of harmony of life energy.”
It’s a form of martial arts in which you join incoming thrusts and redirect them with
minimal effort
and without inflicting harm on the aggressor. According to Aikido’s
founder, it is literally the Art of Peace.

If you get a zinger of a question or a response that could take you off course – work with
it. Don’t try to ‘oppose it.’ Don’t get defensive. Raising your hands to block a person
means you absorb the blow … you literally have to push back with equal and opposite
force (wasted energy) to absorb the blow. Instead, practice Aikido and redirect the
incoming zinger back to your impact, your message or your plan.

Note: Politicians practice Aikido every day. Watch ANY political debate. Instead of
getting defensive when a tough question is asked, the politician redirects toward his or
her message.

O.G.’s Notes: You Can’t Screw Up, If You Show Up

My partner and President/Leader of For Impact | The Suddes Group, Nick Fellers, is a borderline genius. Smart. Action-oriented. Authentic.

He has many great lines, but I heard him say this on the phone once and it just struck me as so freakin’ right on in his role as COACH.

“You can’t SCREW UP … if you just SHOW UP!”

While Nick was speaking with one of his coaching clients, I think that message needed to get out to everyone.

Before you can JUST ASK.

Before you can PRESENT THE OPPORTUNITY.

Before you can MAXIMIZE RELATIONSHIPS.

You need to SHOW UP! (JUST ENGAGE!)

If Not You, Who???

If you (or someone in your organization) is not out making VISITS, making
PRESENTATIONS, making ASKS … who do you think will???

Nobody woke up this morning and said to themselves, “This would be a great day to
give $10,000 (or $100,000) to my favorite IMPACT organization.”

Tom Suddes ‘OLD GUY’ riffing on CAMPAIGNS, LESSONS, THE MODEL and more.


(Recorded by Tom Suddes)

Take a Quantum Leap


(Recorded by Tom Suddes)
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On Prospects


(Recorded by Tom Suddes)
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