Make it Yours

Why do so many causes mirror their competition and partners?  I received four end-of-the-year appeal letters this week that all started with the same opening line.  At the airport this morning a person told me all the facts and figures about the nonprofit they serve.  When I asked them how it compared to similar enterprises in their community, this inspired individual told me many more facts and figures.  I immediately recalled attempting to select a new mobile phone number this week.  The phone company representative who I was speaking with offered numerous four digit options in rapid fire.  I could not even write the numbers down since they came so quickly.  Finally, the agent suggested one that seemed easy to grasp.  This was not remarkable, it was simply convenient.

My focus is to inspire causes to create their identity theirs and not be defined by your neighbors metrics.  Own your purpose and wear it.  Tell me what you believe and then have the facts and figures to answer my specific questions.  Be authentic, insist your enterprise’s actions are consistent with the cause’s stated purpose.  Why overwhelm those who are being introduced to your cause with bizarre.  Most house tours I have received do not start out with the owner stating the framing was 2″ x 6″.  They talk about how the home serves their lifestyle.  Guests should be able to see, feel, touch, and feel an organization’s vibe.  Create an environment that brings forth your best ideas.  If that means assembling in front of a campfire in folding camping chairs then bring the marshmallows.  Duplication simply folds you into the batter and you are destine for a cookie cutter.  Please stand out, we need the inspiration you generate!   

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