An Honest Job Description

I really have a lot of respect for fundraisers. In so many ways it is a thankless job, though one that is incredibly rewarding. You take a lot of crap. For what it’s worth, I’ve got your back.

I’ve also had job descriptions on the brain lately. I’m helping to write a few, and am always reading job postings (even as a freelancer, I’m never quite off the market!) Turnover rate is high among fundraisers (an average term being between 12-18 months.) I can’t help but think if organisations had 1) a better understanding of what fundraising is (and what it is not!) 2) more reasonable expectations and 3) honestly written job descriptions, that perhaps things could be a little better.

So what would an honest job description look like? For fun, I took a stab at a completely honest job description. I hope it will make you smile on this dreadfully cold Friday (it’s currently -35 in Saskatoon!)

Wanted: Best. Fundraiser. Ever.

Do you have thick skin, wear your heart on your sleeve, and have the drive to do more than humanly possible for less than financially feasible? Then you should be our next Fundraising Coordinator (actually Director of Development, but a shitty job title means we can crush your spirit while we pay you only slightly more than you’d make at Tim Hortons)

Key Responsibilities and Requirements:

  • motivating and facilitating supporters to maximise the funds they raise;
  • inspiring new supporters to raise money (dancing for nickels), while maintaining and developing relationships with existing supporters (high pressure door to door encyclopedia sales tactics);
  • developing new and imaginative fundraising activities, many of which involve organising events, many of which may or may not require a Jesus Christ-like ability to perform miracles;
  • raising awareness of the charity by ensuring at least 7 dignitaries and celebrities (non reality TV stars only) support the cause. Aim for Bono, settle for Morrissey;
  • developing and coordinating web-based fundraising, including building an internet robot time machine cash register thingy;
  • developing and implementing a strategy for individual and corporate supporter recruitment and development (must have at least 4 snazzy pant suits);
  • volunteer recruitment, management, training, transportation, piggy back rides, birthday parties – cat herders welcome;
  • space robot like ability to maintain database;
  • accounting skills, but less boring than an actual accountant – SMILE!!!;
  • become the Ernest Hemmingway of appeals, grants, thank you cards, and emails written on behalf of the CEO (please don’t go bananas);
  • making risk analyses and balancing time-cost ratios to focus effort on the most appropriate fundraising activities with the highest chance of success – tarot cards and dice supplied;
  • making coffee and running to the grocery store when we run out of toilet paper;
  • understanding of 30th century business and communications trends;
  • in-depth working knowledge of 18th century Agrarian business practice;
  • ability to give the program staff whatever the hell they want to appease their fragile sensibilities;
  • innate ability of high performance ratio utilization of platitudinous aphorisms;
  • haiku or rap battle champion;
  • INNOVATION!;
  • ability to navigate bureaucratic corn mazes;
  • bff <3<3<3;
  • master cellist preferred;
  • available 24/7 – must dream of work. Martyrdom complex an asset.

Pay Range: LOL! YOLO!

I love you guys! Merriest of merries! xo!