Best Practices Forum Provides Pathways to Success in the CFCNCA
The CFCNCA Best Practices Forum brought together federal workers, specifically Campaign Managers and Coordinators, who are well into the 2012 campaign season. These campaign workers lead coordinated efforts to promote giving within their agencies and strengthen donor engagement and participation from senior management to administrative staff. With just over 30 days remaining in this year’s campaign, Campaign Managers discussed optimal approaches for raising additional dollars during the holiday season and best practices for developing messages that also encourage fellow employees to give in multiple ways, whether it’s streamlining a process, or innovating a campaign tactic through technology or social media. The forum also offered Campaign Managers the opportunity to share strengths and discuss opportunities for improvement within their respective agencies.
“We help our neighbors when times are tough and it’s important to know what’s working within the campaign and what’s not,” said Shannon Hamm, an employee at the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Local Federal Coordinating Committee (LFCC) member. Ms. Hamm served as the event's keynote speaker. During her address, she encouraged campaign workers to do all that they could to “build a bridge between disparity and hope.”
The forum honored Edith Parrish, the first-ever CFCNCA Lifetime Achievement Award winner, whose involvement with the campaign spanned 30 years before her recent retirement. Her passion for the campaign has made her a valuable CFCNCA staff member, and during her remarks she shared the importance of being energized and hands-on when reaching campaign goals and milestones. Parrish notes that the best mantra to have is “if it is to be, it is up to me.”
To meet this year’s financial goal, federal workers must raise $9.6 million per week for the remaining 4 ½ half weeks of the campaign. The panel discussion, which included brief presentations from each speaker from various departments, underscored proven strategies for leadership engagement, traditional and social media outreach, fundraising, and donor motivation.
“I am surrounded by experts and have benefitted from their wealth of knowledge on how best to engage senior management to participate in the campaign,” shares Kawanza Yates, an employee at the U.S. Department of Defense. “The Combined Federal Campaign is an extension of who we are as public servants.” In addition to raising funds for individuals and communities in need, Ms. Yates noted that the campaign has additional benefits to the agency. “When senior management is fully committed to making the campaign a success, it boosts workforce morale across the board,” said Ms. Yates.
To reach broad and diverse audiences and encourage them to give, the panel shared strategies that are effective when creating new and engaged donors. “Consistent, ongoing communications about how the campaign is doing is critical,” adds Derek Parks, an employee at the U.S. Department of Commerce who was the first person to donate to this year’s campaign and the first at his department to hold double-eagle status. “I wouldn’t ask people to do anything I wouldn’t do or haven’t done for the campaign. I use a project-management approach to develop compelling messages to attract potential donors, and we celebrate our team’s successes as a way to spread the word in the hopes of encouraging others to give.”
In addition to the campaign workers in attendance at the successful forum, several members of the Local Federal Coordinating Committee (LFCC), the Emerging Leadership Council (ELC) and local charities were present to support the event and the dedicated Federal workers raising funds through the campaign.
It’s important to note that all of the best practices shared at this forum must be implemented during the regular campaign solicitation period which runs from September 1, 2012 to December 15, 2012.