Nonprofit Nation with Julia Campbell

Be Well, Do Good with Lauren Brownstein

July 12, 2023 Julia Campbell
Be Well, Do Good with Lauren Brownstein
Nonprofit Nation with Julia Campbell
More Info
Nonprofit Nation with Julia Campbell
Be Well, Do Good with Lauren Brownstein
Jul 12, 2023
Julia Campbell

This episode is sponsored by Qgiv, a comprehensive fundraising platform trusted by over 20,000 fundraisers. The Qgiv team understands that fundraising isn’t always an easy job. To help, they recently surveyed fundraising professionals and donors to create a soon to be released report, Building a Sustainable Future: A Guide to Healthy Fundraising. This report explores how the economy, staffing issues, declining donor numbers, and more have impacted nonprofit teams. To learn how you can build more sustainable fundraising revenue and advocate for data-backed change, click here  to be notified when the report is released and receive your copy!

Nonprofit organizations need their professionals to perform at peak levels, inspire others, maintain relationships with community members, and achieve "reach goals."

Grueling hours, unrealistic expectations, and lack of operational supports lead to high burnout and churn among those working in the nonprofit world.

The good news is that there is a lot that nonprofit leaders can do to better support their employees. And, there's plenty that nonprofit professionals, themselves, can do to maintain their own well-being, resilience, and happiness on the job.

Lauren Brownstein helps nonprofit organizations, philanthropists, and grant makers achieve their goals through PITCH, LLC, her fundraising and philanthropy consulting practice. She is the author of Be Well, Do Good: Self-Care and Renewal for Nonprofit Professionals and Other Do-Gooders, a Barnes & Noble Bestseller. Lauren has raised millions of dollars for workforce development programs, museums, student support organizations, women’s causes, community centers, international groups, associations, and more. She was a certified foster parent before adopting a child from the foster care system.

Lauren's book: Be Well, Do Good: Self-Care and Renewal for Nonprofit Professionals and Other Do-Gooders

About Julia Campbell, the host of the Nonprofit Nation podcast:

Named as a top thought leader by Forbes and BizTech Magazine, Julia Campbell (she/hers) is an author, coach, and speaker on a mission to make the digital world a better place.

She wrote her book, Storytelling in the Digital Age: A Guide for Nonprofits, as a roadmap for social change agents who want to build movements using engaging digital storytelling techniques. Her second book, How to Build and Mobilize a Social Media Community for Your Nonprofit, was published in 2020 as a call-to-arms for mission-driven organizations to use the power of social media to build movements.  

Take my free masterclass: 3 Must-Have Elements of Social Media Content that Converts

Show Notes Transcript

This episode is sponsored by Qgiv, a comprehensive fundraising platform trusted by over 20,000 fundraisers. The Qgiv team understands that fundraising isn’t always an easy job. To help, they recently surveyed fundraising professionals and donors to create a soon to be released report, Building a Sustainable Future: A Guide to Healthy Fundraising. This report explores how the economy, staffing issues, declining donor numbers, and more have impacted nonprofit teams. To learn how you can build more sustainable fundraising revenue and advocate for data-backed change, click here  to be notified when the report is released and receive your copy!

Nonprofit organizations need their professionals to perform at peak levels, inspire others, maintain relationships with community members, and achieve "reach goals."

Grueling hours, unrealistic expectations, and lack of operational supports lead to high burnout and churn among those working in the nonprofit world.

The good news is that there is a lot that nonprofit leaders can do to better support their employees. And, there's plenty that nonprofit professionals, themselves, can do to maintain their own well-being, resilience, and happiness on the job.

Lauren Brownstein helps nonprofit organizations, philanthropists, and grant makers achieve their goals through PITCH, LLC, her fundraising and philanthropy consulting practice. She is the author of Be Well, Do Good: Self-Care and Renewal for Nonprofit Professionals and Other Do-Gooders, a Barnes & Noble Bestseller. Lauren has raised millions of dollars for workforce development programs, museums, student support organizations, women’s causes, community centers, international groups, associations, and more. She was a certified foster parent before adopting a child from the foster care system.

Lauren's book: Be Well, Do Good: Self-Care and Renewal for Nonprofit Professionals and Other Do-Gooders

About Julia Campbell, the host of the Nonprofit Nation podcast:

Named as a top thought leader by Forbes and BizTech Magazine, Julia Campbell (she/hers) is an author, coach, and speaker on a mission to make the digital world a better place.

She wrote her book, Storytelling in the Digital Age: A Guide for Nonprofits, as a roadmap for social change agents who want to build movements using engaging digital storytelling techniques. Her second book, How to Build and Mobilize a Social Media Community for Your Nonprofit, was published in 2020 as a call-to-arms for mission-driven organizations to use the power of social media to build movements.  

Take my free masterclass: 3 Must-Have Elements of Social Media Content that Converts

This episode is sponsored by Qgiv, a comprehensive fundraising platform trusted by over 20,000 fundraisers. Through online giving and event registration forms, text fundraising, PeerToPeer campaigns and auction events, qgiv's tools help fundraisers like you raise more. The Qgiv team understands that fundraising isn't always an easy job to help. They recently surveyed fundraising professionals donors to create a soon to be released report, building a Sustainable Future a Guide to Healthy Fundraising. This report explores how the economy, staffing issues, declining donor numbers, and more have impacted nonprofit teams. To learn how you can build more sustainable fundraising revenue and advocate for data backed change, head to jcsocialmarketing.com qive that's jcsocialmarketing.com Qgiv to be notified when the report is released and to receive your free copy. Thank you and let's get to the episode. Hello and welcome to Nonprofit Nation. I'm your host, Julia Campbell, and I'm going to sit down with nonprofit, industry experts, fundraisers, marketers, and everyone in between to get real and discuss what it takes to build that movement that you've been dreaming of. I created the Nonprofit Nation podcast to share practical wisdom and strategies to help you confidently find your voice, definitively grow your audience, and effectively build your movement. If you're a nonprofit newbie or an experienced professional who's looking to get more visibility, reach more people, and create even more impact, then you're in the right place. Let's get started. Hello, nonprofit unicorns. This is Julia Campbell and I'm here today with another episode of Nonprofit Nation. I'm really excited to be talking about something that I actually really need help with, so I'm going to be taking some notes. We know that nonprofits need their professionals to perform at peak levels, inspire others, maintain relationships with community members, and achieve goals. But we know the grueling hours, the unrealistic expectations, and the lack of operational supports lead to high burnout and churn among those working in the nonprofit world. So today we're going to talk about what nonprofit organizations can do to better support their employees and what nonprofit professionals themselves can do to maintain their own well being, resilience, and happiness on the job. My guest is Lauren Brownstein, and Lauren helps nonprofit organizations, philanthropists and grant makers achieve their goals through Pitch, LLC, her fundraising and philanthropy consulting practice. And she's the author of Be Well Do Good Self Care and Renewal for Nonprofit Professionals and Other Do Gooders. A Barnes and Noble bestseller. So congrats on that. Lawrence raised millions of dollars for workforce development programs, museums, student support organizations, women's causes, community centers, international groups, and more. She was a certified foster parent before adopting a child from the foster care system. Lauren, welcome to the podcast. Thank you so much for having me. I'm so excited to be here. I'm such a follower of you and your work and I refer people to you all the time. I want to thank you for putting so much great content out into the world. Really thoughtful, high quality content. I've sent a lot of people your way to look at it. So I'm very flattered that you invited me to join you. Well, I'm really flattered by those words. Words of Affirmation, my love language. People know this. I love it. That really makes me happy. So tell us a little bit about you, your background, and how you started working with nonprofits. Like a lot of people, it seemed like I fell into it, and then at the same time, it seems like my whole life was leading up to it. I feel very similarly as well. Yeah. So my first job out of college was with a nonprofit organization doing fundraising work, and I graduated college in 92. There was a big recession. I didn't know what the heck I was going to do for a job. And I was an art history major. And as you may know, there's just tremendous job market demand for that. My mother was an art history major. You have to heck out of town. Yeah. In Toronto u of t which I loved. I absolutely loved it actually did circle back to my career a little later, but long story short, I was just figuring out what I wanted to do. I had an informational interview with someone who is a youth group director when I was in high school, and he was in another job, and he led me to this job. So I sort of fell into this nonprofit consulting fundraising gig as my first job, and then it evolved from there. I ended up running a national teen volunteer program through that youth group that I was a part of. I went to grad school. I worked in the It sector for a bit, but not as a programmer or anything. I worked at an association where I was there, I like to say, like hippie dippy education person, and then again shifted to full time fundraising. So the semicolon in that whole story is when I went to grad school, I got a master's in teaching in museum education, which is very focused on experiential learning, object based learning. So this all comes together when I got a job as a fundraiser at the US. Holocaust Memorial Museum. Wow. When I was an art history major, my thesis, I wrote about Holocaust Memorialization. And then I had a couple of other fundraising jobs and evolved my consulting practice after that. And while my consulting practice began as really focused on foundation relations, so grant writing, prospect research, developing relationships with foundations, I have thankfully and blessedly, also really integrated training into that. I do all sorts of training for all sorts of groups online, in person, hybrid, you name it. And I love the training because I really draw in the master's in teaching background as well. If you do a training with me, you're going to be writing, you're going to be standing up, moving around, small groups, big groups, everything. So I think I answered your question. I'm not 100% sure, but I'm getting there, right? Yeah. Well, I love hearing people's stories. Oh, you've done consulting for 19 years. That's great. I love hearing how people come to this work. And I have had guests that really were intentional in getting into fundraising or getting into marketing, but most of us either meandered along the path or had paths like yours and mine where I think if we looked at the writing on the wall, we would have seen that we were meant to be working in nonprofit work. Accidents or coincidences, I think things happen because they're supposed to happen that way. Exactly. So you recently published Be Well, Do Good Self Care and Renewal for Nonprofit Professionals and Other Do Gooders. And congrats on writing a book. I know what a huge endeavor writing and publishing a book is. Why did you write this book? It's a great question. I never really thought that I had a book in me. I think a lot of people who write books, a lot of my friends who've written books, this has always been a goal of theirs. It's always been an aspiration. It really wasn't for me necessarily, but then I realized, as I was focusing on taking better care of myself, which is something that I've always done throughout my adult life, but particularly during the pandemic, as a lot of us were doing, we were realizing we really needed to take care of ourselves. And I realized that over the years, through my blog, primarily, I had actually created a lot of content on this subject. So I thought to myself, what if I put all this together? But then also enhanced it with some additional thoughts about how nonprofit workers can take better care of themselves and additional thoughts about the responsibility of the sector and of organizational leadership to make self care and wellness a part of the culture, and a little bit of conversation around why that matters. Maybe you and I could talk about that too. So, yeah, I decided to embark upon this. And I knew that just as my training experiences are very interactive, I wanted the book to be very interactive. I didn't want it to just be words on a page. So I set out to create this book with worksheets, checklists, note pages, encouraging to write in the margins and scribble down your ideas so that the book would really be a personalized guidebook. So that's kind of how it came about. A lot of people ask me, how long did it take? And I like to say, well, it took a few months, but it took five years, because a lot of it is stuff I've been thinking about and writing about for a long time. And I also have been a yoga teacher. I've studied several different kinds of meditation. I do aromatherapy, my daughter gets reiki. I'm into acupuncture. I naturally do a lot of this hippy dippy stuff anyway. Oh, that's funny. So that's great. I think it all relates to the learnings of the book and the things that you teach. So who needs to pick up this book? Who needs to read this book? Everybody. I think there's messaging for it no matter who you are. And I intentionally said for nonprofit workers or other do gooders, because I think it actually is also relevant to people outside of the nonprofit arena. But this is the world that I live in, work in, operate in. And I do want to say, and maybe we'll just talk about this a little bit. I hope that the message I'm putting out there is not just about what nonprofit employees could do for themselves, but what the leadership of the organizations, meaning senior executives, people in the C suite, and board members, can and should be doing. And I think that not only do those folks need to model these practices, in other words, do as I say, not just as I do. But I heard one quote from an article, there was a quote from an article where they said, friday yoga isn't enough. Friday yoga isn't enough. Right? Yeah, it's great to offer, oh, everyone can do yoga on Fridays. Now our wellness thing is checked off. It is something that should become a normative part of organizational culture and organizational operations. So I think one example I talk about in the book is one of the things that I think helps nonprofit workers stay fresh and stay aligned with the mission is to actually see the work. Sometimes you're sitting in your office or even sitting in your home office, and you sort of forget, oh, we are preserving that beautiful forest. We are feeding people at our soup kitchen, et cetera, et cetera. I think it's great to be able to go see that work once a week, once a month, you make a point of serving a meal in the soup kitchen. I think it's better if the senior leadership in the organization says, okay, our whole organization is doing this site visit or this volunteer work on this day every month. We're going to have a group discussion about it every other week, or whatever the case may be. But it needs to be not something that's an add on extra that I'll do in my free time. It needs to be part of the organization. That's so important, what you just said, because so often the impetus is on the fundraiser to go out in the field or talk to the program officers with all your spare time when you're supposed to be calling donors and writing grants and getting the direct mail appeal out and the newsletter. And I think if you institutionalize it, like you just said, if you make it part of the culture of the organization, it's just like storytelling. When I teach storytelling, if you have a fundraiser that is working in a complete silo and every week they have to basically pull teeth and scrape and beg for stories. It's not going to work unless there is that culture of philanthropy, that culture of storytelling around everything the organization does. That's really true. And it's such an interesting example because if it is pulling teeth to get those stories, that's a canary in the coal mine that tells you that something is amiss. So I totally agree with you. So let's get to self care. Now, self care, I think just like storytelling, is probably a very overused word, and I want to know how do you define self care? I agree with you that it's a term that's starting to lose its meaning. Sort of like awesome, which is sad. Because it is so important. Yes. When I say something is awesome, do I? Oh, I say something's amazing. I say that all the time. Loses a feeling. The other one that I talk about a lot is unique. I teach a lot of workshops about grant writing and I tell people flat out, do not say that your program is unique because I promise you it's not. Somebody else is doing it too. Somewhere in some way, it's a meaningless word. So look, on some level, I think that everyone has to define what self care is for themselves. For me, it is about doing what you need to do so that you can be your best. You you could be your best colleague, partner, parent, daughter, neighbor, whatever the case may be. And I think it's doing it fearlessly and unapologetically. If you are taking a morning for yourself, say to rest or whatever, if you're doing that, but you feel like you have to fall over yourself, apologizing for it, or you have to make a lot of excuses well, I'm doing this because then it sort of sucks the care out of whatever it is that you're doing. Right. So I think being able to do that fearlessly and unapologetically is really important. And much like I was just describing with organizations that Friday yoga isn't enough. It can't just be an add on. I think effective self care is something that's built into your life. So yeah, it's not just about lighting candles and having fuzzy blankets, although those things are awesome too, just to use that word. And I love those things. But to be as effective as possible, we all have to find ways to build that into our lives. And something I talk about in the book is micro steps. It doesn't have to be. Sometimes I think self care practices, whether it's taking a walk or breathing or meditating or whatever, it almost becomes another to do list and then it feels burdensome. And I struggle with that, I think in part because I have so many different practices that I like. So I have to reset how I think about that and say, you know what? Today I just really need a ten minute walk out in the sunshine, and that's how I'm going to refresh myself. That is such a good point. That self care, it defeats the purpose if you get stressed out, the self care is on your to do list, and you can't do it right? Well, how do you handle that? Do you feel like you have things that you do, and do you kind of beat yourself up if you don't do them, like I do? Sometimes? Always. For me, what I have started to realize about self care is that it really is just alone time. So my husband works at home, I work at home. I have two kids, and everyone is very lovely. But sometimes now, I love what you said about fearless. Be fearless and unapologetic. I want to go down to the basement and close the door and watch TV and no one bother me. And that is my sometimes that's what I need. Taking walks is great. Talking to friends, I like to go to the gym, things like that. But even just something as simple as closing the door, not working, not checking my phone, nothing on the to do list, just kind of like zoning out, reading a book or watching TV with no one asking me, mom, where are my shoes? Where's the laundry? Where's this? What's for dinner? Blah, blah, blah. Now, if you can figure out a way to do that and get people in your life to not bug you, that's your next book. But I applaud your. It'S funny because this transitions into conference season, which we're coming into conference season, and some people at conferences, they're very like, go, go. We've got to go to every happy hour, every party, every this, every that, stay until two in the morning. And for me, I really like that alone time. I need that to recharge. So I enjoy conferences, I enjoy speaking and training, like you said you do. And at the end of the day, I need that like, no one speak to me turning off my phone. And I just need to be away from people for a little while. So I think self care, it's like you said, we can all define it. We need to define it for ourselves. So in terms of some of the tactical strategies in the book, you have a lot of them, you have practical approaches to cultivating calm. Can you share a few with us? I can share some of my own practical approaches to cultivating calm, sure. And I think some of them are more again, it's different for everyone. Some people respond to more somatic approaches to this, moving your body, focusing on your breath. Or even my daughter, she wouldn't mind my saying, she loves coloring. Like those mandalas. Yes. With, like, sharpened colored pencils. I love that, too. Yes. That is her thing. And it's sort of the physicalness of that gets her into a flow state. There's this famous author Mahali Chicksimahaya, who wrote a book called Flow. And it's about that state where you're in the flow and you're not aware of time and space. And that's powerful. For some people, that's yoga. For some people, that's coloring. For whatever, fill in the blank for some people, that's taking a walk. I also think there are sort of so for me, let me back up. I like to have a lot of tools in the toolbox carefully about what I really need on a given day. Right? Yeah. So there are certain things I do based on the day and certain things I try to do every day based on the day. I may take a meditation break in the afternoon. I may go for a ten minute walk. I may do ten minutes of yoga, stretching. And what I found also is that if I tell myself, well, I can't do yoga unless it's 45 minutes, it doesn't count unless it's 45 minutes. Right. Then I let go of that. Then there are other things that I do to try to sort of reframe my thinking. Like, my word of the year is. Something oh, I love that. I want to talk about that. Yeah. So my word of the year, I mean, I'll do a brief one this year. It's actually two words, which is unusual. It's what if. I tend to be a class, half empty person, but I know that I feel better if I don't immediately go to the Pessimistic place. So if there's a challenge I have to deal with, like, oh, I don't know, paying for college because my father's a junior in high school, instead of catastrophizing and letting that snowball, I remember my word of the year, and I say, well, what if we do get that scholarship? What if we do get more financial aid? What if this, what if that, what if the other so just those reminders or for a long time, I had this sign that I made, and this is something else in the book. I actually put it in our bathroom, like, right next to the sink, so my daughter and I would both see it, and it was, what is my purpose today? And that, again, helped help keep me from sort of the snowball effect of everything I have to do and everything I'm responsible for, et cetera, et cetera. Those things are on the list. The list is written down. It's not going to disappear. The list is there. But what really is my purpose today? And that is another example of kind of a reframing strategy. And I think that the more one meditates, frankly, whatever meditation modality you use, the more you are able to step outside your thoughts and observe your thoughts and notice if you need to say to yourself what if? If you need to say to yourself the other thing I'll just mention that's been life changing for me and I really do try to do this every day is a gratitude practice, which is also one of my words of the year and also a worksheet in the book I try to write every day. I don't even commit to mornings, but I try to do mornings three things that I'm grateful for, but rather than just saying I'm grateful for chocolate, green juice and my kid, like, I really write about it. I'm grateful for this green juice that I'm drinking right now because I just feel more energized after I have it and I can go to Joe in the juice and it's really fresh and that's so convenient. Somebody taught me that, that if you actually write a few sentences about it's, more meaningful. I have to tell you, Julia, my gratitude practice, for real, no hyperbole has changed my life. It really is life changing. So I don't even remember. Oh, we're talking about the micro steps. Is that what you asked me about? Yeah. So the idea is like, you don't have to say I'm going to jog 5 miles a day. Say you're going to go for a walk. You don't have to say I'm going to do yoga for 45 minutes. Just do what you can and do what you need to do on a given day, and you don't have to do all the things on all the days. What's my purpose today? I love that I had Jenny Blake, who wrote one of my favorite books is called Free Time. And she talks in that book about asking yourself, what's your job today? Which really resonated with me because I am dealing with elderly parents. I'm dealing with a mom who is now alone. Like, my stepfather passed away last year, children school committee, husband, like all the roles, not to mention my real job. That pays me. Right. But some days it's like, okay, I have a sick kid at home and they're in a lot of pain. That's my job today, sadly. I'm going to try to get in emails or do whatever I can, but that's my job. Or some days, yeah. And so I always think about that and I think it doesn't mean you can't do anything else. It just means what at the end of the day, if you have accomplished well or as well as you can, you will feel better about. We have those to do lists of like 10,000 things on them and as we know, with COVID and everything else, things can get completely thrown out the window. Yeah. And I think, I mean, I've always been a person who feels like they have to be the superwoman, super person and no cracks in the armor can't show any vulnerability. And one of the things I don't like to talk about COVID silver linings, because it's tragic. It's still tragic. But I will say a shift that I've seen is that people do give each other a little more grace, I think. And at least for me, and maybe this is just my turn around my shift. It's become more okay to show some cracks in the armor. In a professional environment, things feel less performative to me as they did before. You sort of put on your professional face, and now I think, A, it's a little bit less of that, and B, people kind of like that. I always thought I had to show that I was infallible and perfect in a work environment, but I actually think people like seeing that you're a real person and you struggle with stuff too. Do you have that experience? Absolutely. So the way that I think about it and this is not my saying, I'll figure out who said it, and I'll credit it in the show notes, you want to speak from your scars and not your wounds. So if you're being vulnerable about something and you're clearly in distress, it's going to distress other people. So it's not to say, don't be honest, but if it's like an open, gaping, bleeding wound, a lot of time that makes people uncomfortable. But if it's a scar, or if it's like a wound that's kind of scarring up a little bit and you can talk about it and talk about how you got through it, people definitely appreciate that. So it's such a tightrope walk, but I like to be vulnerable and transparent, and people know that, and I'm kind of an open book, but I agree. I think that's changed. That's definitely something that has changed for me, at least on Zoom calls. Like, I've been on Zoom calls where literally kids are swinging from the rafters and cats are running on the keyboard, and really, who cares? At the end of the day, I've been working at home since 2010, so it's been chaos for me for a long time, so I get it. But I do think other people are now so much more willing to forgive and flexible in rescheduling or flexible in schedule adjustments, because it's like, oh, sorry, my kid'sick, or someone'sick or I'm sick or not even that. Just saying that I'm going through something. I've seen a lot of people just say, you know what? I'm just not up for this today. Can we reschedule? And completely fine. So you're right. I have been seeing that too. Yeah, that's a positive thing. And you rescheduled this conversation. I had a thing I do for my kid at our originally scheduled time, so I appreciate you for doing that. Oh, yeah, I think that happens so often. And people that get snippy about rescheduling, no, they're just not my people. I also want to can I just make one asterisk? Because many years I was not a person with a kid, and I'm not married. I think that people without kids and single people do sometimes get the short end of the stick on this. Those of us are like, I have. To do this for my kid. I have to do that for my kid. Well, you know, what if I really need to go for a massage? That is just as legit in a lot of cases. Yeah. And sometimes they're taking care of their parents or siblings or dogs or cats or there's so much going on. Mental health crises. Yeah, there's so much going on. Solve that problem. In our next book, we're going to solve that problem. The mental health crisis. That's a whole different topic. I did have Ian Adair on to talk about it, but I need to have him on again. So how can leaders and managers better support their teams and make these conversations a normal part of sort of the workplace? That's a great question. First, I think there needs to be real clarity about why this matters. Because if boards, for example, aren't really clear on why this matters, they are not going to make it an organizational imperative. And I talk about this in the book and I've talked about it on some podcasts too, that if I'm a donor to an organization, right, and that organization's staff is burning out, quitting quiet, quitting doing what is it called? Minimum Effort Monday or something like that, doesn't care anymore, is half assing it, for lack of a better word, then that organization is not really being a responsible steward of my donation. Right. Like they are not using that funding to its highest capacity. So if nothing else, it is responsible stewardship and good fiduciary practice in a way to take care of your staff and make sure that they are performing at whatever peak capacity looks like for them. Do you follow what I'm saying? Yes, absolutely. I think that's absolutely right. We have to get into the fact that, yeah, peak capacity looks different for everyone, but it's our responsibility as leaders and managers and also stewards of sustainable organizations to make sure that we are operating the best that we can under whatever circumstances, hurricanes, pandemic, whatever might be occurring. Yeah. And it's irresponsible for us to have this public trust and to accept these charitable dollars if we're not if we're. Setting our employees up for failure. Yes. And I think once you get there, then there are lots of things that board and C suite leaders can and should be doing. For example, maybe the board shouldn't set such unrealistic expectations for the Ed or for the staff. Maybe they shouldn't require things to be prepared right away when there's a huge organizational event coming up or there's some big project that they're already engaged with. Maybe the executive director should not be emailing people on the weekends. And even if the Ed says, oh, I just send emails on the weekend, but you don't have to respond till Monday. No, you feel pressure as an employee, you see that maybe the Ed shouldn't be there throughout the night or throughout the weekends. Some of it is such simple like. Leadership by example. And then beyond that, I think it's the whole thing of what are we going to build into our organizational calendar and our operations to help people stay aligned with the mission to help them take care of themselves? And I also think organizations should offer a variety of options and modalities to keep their folks mentally and physically healthy. So for example, some people would love to have Friday yoga. Some people would die before they do that at the office. Some people love to have a Friday happy hour. Some people would rather stick a fork in their eyes and sit around and have chips and salsa with their colleagues when they could be getting work done so they can get out the door and get to their families. So as challenging as it sounds, I think it just can't be a one size fits all approach because one size does not fit all. So trying a lot of different things and realizing what's so important about what you said is that not only is it not fun for everyone to do yoga, like, it's very ableist to just say the yoga is the only wellness thing that we have to offer or even walks sometimes. Beth Cantor wrote about this in The Happy, Healthy Nonprofit and has talked a lot about this because she's a big, big proponent of walking meetings and she talks about them, writes about them on her blog. She even does Facebook lives sometimes when she's on them. She's always gotten more than 10,000 steps a day. She's just a huge, huge walker. But then she started talking about how if that's the only time that you can get the Ed's ear, like say the Ed or whoever the board chair is saying, oh, I'm going to go on a walk for lunch. It's almost like the old boys club, like the three martini lunch. Golf. Yeah, golf. Exactly. So there have to be other ways than and it just goes to your point, there have to be other ways other than just saying let's all take a walk

at 04:

00 or happy hour. Think about happy hour. Think about how many people are sober. Think about how many people have struggle with substance abuse and misuse and have family members. And I was always uncomfortable with that at work because I thought it really excluded a lot of people. Not to mention

if you're doing it at five or 06:

00, what about those people that have to go home and feed their kids or feed their dogs? So that's fine as an option once in a while, but yes, having that mixture. And also, what do you think about what would be an appropriate way to sort of ask employees for their kind of feedback or what they want? Oh, that is a good question. I don't know. Is there an inappropriate way? Well, I'd be thinking like in a group setting might be inappropriate just because if people don't want to raise their hand and say, I'm uncomfortable with this. I don't know, maybe emails. Yeah, I mean, maybe some sort of email survey. I do think there's a lot of value in two things. Number one, having everyone in the organization be able to have a voice. That doesn't mean everybody gets the decision, but everybody has a voice in helping to make the decision. And number two, I think one of the ways to sustain this at organizations and I'm putting it out there, but I haven't figured out the how. There has to be some way of measuring the ROI on this stuff, right? Even if it feels like a lot of work to, say, schedule two walks or yoga things a week and two book talks a week or whatever, it's going to earn two yoga things a month and two book talks a month, or put together the whole calendar and survey people, it kind of can feel cumbersome. But if you can measure that employee retention grew by 30% over the year that you did this, or versus the year you didn't, then that gives you justification for investing that time and effort. I also want to say, as an aside, and I say this very clearly in the book, the thing that nonprofit workers really want to stay happy is more money. So let's not forget that. Right. I don't want to say that Friday. Yoga is an excuse for not paying people equitably. Yes. Right? Pay people equitably. Let's just need money. Repeat that 100%. So that is super important. Perks. I read so much about Millennials and Gen Z don't care about money. They just want flexible schedules. Well, we want flexible schedules, and we would like to be paid. We would like to be paid commensuratively. Yeah. Oh, my gosh, there's so much to unpack there. But absolutely. Like, pay your people. We don't necessarily want free pizza every week. Take that money, pay us, put it in our four or three B, whatever it is. Right. I heard this term recently that I cannot take credit for, but it's so resonant for me, and it is passion exploitation. You're passionate about this, so you shouldn't mind if you're not paid a market wage. You're passionate about this, so you shouldn't mind having to work on the weekends. You chose this, which is the most, like, gaslighty, manipulative thing to say to someone. You chose this. Yes. I get that I chose to work in a nonprofit. I get that I chose to work in this sector, but I also need to be able to pay my rent, pay my mortgage, pay my kids tuition, whatever the case may be. It's all choices, but that doesn't mean you get to exploit me. Absolutely. So my last question, I want to focus on a statement that you made in the book that says, I'm trying to be more laid back, and it's making me anxious. I read that, and I fully thought, I need that on a shirt. I need that on a tote bag. I need that imprinted on my forehead. So as a business owner and a parent, how do you keep yourself centered and how are you trying to be more laid back? What do you do for self care? Look, the short answer is I'm not. I am anxious. And for me, part of it is just realizing I'm not wired to be laid back. Right. Yeah, I'm not either. Sort of in the same way that I need to stop beating myself up for not doing 45 minutes of yoga every time I do yoga. Maybe don't beat myself up for not being so laid back again. I try to step outside myself and observe when I'm winding up, when I'm getting anxious about something, and then using various techniques to try to bring myself back down. And for me, again, the somatic stuff is really helpful. The walking, the yoga, the breathing. I just started doing this thing that I love called tapping. Oh, I've heard of that. I always thought it was a bunch of baloney, but the truth is you're activating acupressure points and it is great. I love, love it. So, yes, there are all these tools, there are all these little steps that I take, but the biggest thing I try to do is observe myself. And I also think that my life is set up in a totally unrealistic way anyway. How am I a solo parent and running a business? And all the craziness? It's already a bit of a losing battle. And then the pandemic just made it so much more intense and oh, my gosh, one gift I received was just realizing, okay, some stuff's just not going to happen. And that is a journey that each one of us has to go on on our own. And some people are just born that way. Some people just kind of float through life and things happen and it's fine, and they don't care if a lot of stuff doesn't go off as planned for some of us capricorny folks like me. Capricorn? I was going to ask you. I was going to ask you. Astrological sign was okay, that makes sense. Yeah. Their capricorns are laid back, too. But I am Capricorni in a lot of ways, in a lot of good ways. I'm very loyal and all those things hardworking. Have you done your enneagram? No. Tell me about that. It's just a personality test, but that's not Myers Briggs. That's something totally different, right? Yeah, that's something totally different. I don't know what my Myers Briggs is. Yeah, I would just google it. It's an Enneagram spelled like it sounds. I haven't done that now. Have you? Okay, yes, I'm an Enneagram Eight, which no one should be surprised by. What does that mean? Fiercely loyal, fiercely like, will not shy away from a fight. Puts their foot in their mouth, speaks before they think leader and ambitious, driven. This sounds a lot like me. There are great things about being that way, and there's some really tough things. About being exactly never will admit they're wrong. That's another bad one about I know. But the thing is you never are wrong. No, I mean, that's the upside of it. But yeah. I love personality tests. I was thinking of doing strength Finders. I think that's interesting because I had Kishana Palmer on the show and she was talking about Strengths Finders and how to build teams based on people's strengths and enneagrams and their personality types and what you can learn about people and how they actually are going to function in a team setting. So I thought I think that's really interesting. But that's just a little bit of a tangent. Yeah, it feels a little luxurious. Like it's hard enough to find good people. I have to find good people now that fit a certain enneagram profile. But I guess yeah. Well, no, just doing it with the people that you have. I don't think you should fire them if they're an enneagram three. But I guess knowing what the people on your team, knowing what their personality traits are and how to maximize their contributions, I guess that's the idea. Right. Well, like you said, it's just a tool in the toolbox. The next book is I'm trying to be more laid back. It's making me anxious. Toolkits for anxious, over ambitious, type A business owner, parent people. Right. So where can people find out about you, Lauren, and learn more about how to work with you? Thank you so much. The best place to go that has all of my information is probably my website, which is Pitchconsulting.com. That's P-I-T-C-H-I have to be very intentional. Like baseball. Well, no, it's P. Like Pennsylvania, not B. I didn't even think of that, but that's hilarious. I bet there is a consulting business out there called that. I could be a really good consultant at that, too. But that's not what this podcast is about. Yeah, so there's amazing there about me and what I do. I have a blog with tons of free, hopefully interesting and helpful content. There's information about the book on my website. The book is also available through Barnes and Noble's website. And I also have a membership program for smaller nonprofits. All sorts of good stuff on there onto my newsletter as well. All right, well, thanks so much for being here today for the fantastic conversation. I hope we can meet in person at some point soon. We could have, like, a TV show where we just talk about self care and yes. Personality tests and astrology. I love it. Well, thank you so much for inviting me. It's really fun. And again, I'm so honored to be a little part of your world. Oh, thank you. All right. And thanks, everyone, for listening. See you next time. Well, hey there. I wanted to say thank you for tuning into my show and for listening all the way to the end. If you really enjoyed today's conversation, make sure to subscribe to the show in your favorite podcast app, and you'll get new episodes downloaded as soon as they come out. I would love if you left me a rating or a review, because this tells other people that my podcast is worth listening to, and then me and my guests can reach even more earbuds and create even more impact. So that's pretty much it. I'll be back soon with a brand new episode, but until then, you can find me on Instagram at Julia Campbell 77. Keep changing the world, you nonprofit unicorn.