It seemed like a good time to take another look at this post from 2021.

Are You What You Wear?

June may seem like an odd month to write about what we wear to work. But as we move into a new phase of the pandemic, more of us return to the office, and things settle into a new routine, the question of what to wear comes up. Now I am a middle-aged African American man working in a major metropolis, so I can only talk about this from my particular perspective. 

The New Yorker Magazine recently posted an interesting podcast on the subject that had a good deal to say about why we wear what we wear to work - I highly recommend you listen to it. 

Personally, I wear ties and sometimes suits. I like the convenience of reaching into the closet, pulling out a white shirt and pair of pants (or a suit), and grabbing a tie. It is just easy. Now I am also a big believer in having a "look." A way people see your outward self that you define.

Now I will freely admit that being from the South, being "dressed" is cultural with me as well. When I was growing up, people just dressed up more than they do now. I also grew up feeling that as a person of color, I had to be cleaner, smarter, and more polite to truly achieve.

Then I decided to be a fundraiser. When I started, there were not that many people of color who were in the field. I was lucky enough to work for two experienced fundraisers of color early in my career. I learned a great deal from them about raising money and maneuvering my way through the society of those supporting the non-profits for which I was working.

Now I am an experienced fundraiser with over 25 years of working for all kinds of non-profits. I manage staff, work with the Board, and help lead the organization. Do my ties and suits help? Well, I don't know for sure. I know I want people to be comfortable handing me a check or, with my help creating a planned gift. But what I can't be "visually" is a different person for everyone. I have to be the person I am. The one who is comfortable in his skin - as much as anyone ever is - who understands the dynamic between his position as a fundraiser and the people he works with to support the organization's work.

At the end of the day, I wear a tie and a suit sometimes because I like it. I look good wearing it.  And I hope people feel comfortable with me as I do my job.

Anxiety greatly threatens our ability to be thoughtful and do thoughtful work.


Trauma-Informed Fundraising - Understanding your role and the donors - an initial survey.

 It takes a moment for the survey to appear.  Hold still...

[powr-survey id="bff4eefa_1682496295"]

Trauma-Informed Fundraising - Understanding your role and the donors at AFPICON23.


Lisa Temoshok and I want to thank the amazing roomful of people who attended our AFPICON session yesterday on "Trauma Informed Fundraising." It was a marvelous experience to share our work with a group of wholehearted fundraisers working to take as good care of themselves as their organizations take of their supported persons and programs. We hope to continue these critical conversations at other locations and maybe "Trauma-Informed Fundraising" part two at AFPICON24 in Toronto. Again thank you to everyone who attended the session.  If you have access to the AFPICON23 website, you can download the handout and listen to the session.  Please check Lisa's site for some special practices that were mentioned during the session. 

Please leave a comment thoughtfully. 


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