I’m in Chicago meeting with my colleagues. We have a widely distributed team and we are looking toward year-end, adjusting metrics and planing for 2015. As it is for many fundraisers, this is intense work.

Last night I decompressed over some FaceTime with Rory Green. She’s a fundraiser too, savvy and upbeat and wise. Funny too (just check out FundraiserGrrl). I was talking to her about our big goals and trying to reach them.

“You know,” she said, “I believe a fundraiser can raise any amount of money.”

Yes. That IS true. A fundraiser can.

“As long as they are supported. And offered the appropriate resources.”

Also true. But I thought more about her first comment.

When we hung up I thought for a while about that. My thoughts turned back to home, to Vancouver and Seattle and the sea (which I love, I really love to live where I can smell the sea).

I thought of all the ships and how, as fundraisers, we are like the tugboats, guiding in the ships, the way fundraisers guide donors. They are the precious cargo, we simply help navigate. I quickly checked on Wikipedia and loved what they said:

“Tugboats are powerful for their size and strongly built, and some are ocean-going. Some tugboats serve as icebreakers or salvage boats.”

Well, isn’t that just like a fundraiser?

I’ve got my spyglass out and am looking at the different ships – some nearer and some on the horizon  – who are moving toward our shores. I’m making my plan for each one, tailoring the plans as December comes and then we turn the page and continue to the New Year. Sometimes I’ll have to salvage, sometimes I’ll have to fight to get to that donor. You will too. But remember, you CAN do it.

Just as a small tug boat guides even the largest ships, you will too.

Seattle Harbor

Seattle Harbor

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