Today’s PD Opportunities




Training a Two-sport Athlete

Kyle Buchmann

By Kyle Buchmann

I am a baseball fanatic. The game captivates me. It provides links to my past, present, and future. I dream of my own children falling in love with the game.

Given my love of baseball, it’s not surprising that this summer’s movie “Million Dollar Arm” caught my eye. The premise of the movie is that there could be a high return on investment if the star of the film can turn cricket athletes in India into major league baseball pitchers in the U.S.

Baseball and cricket are vastly different, but they both use bats and balls. And the “pitcher” in baseball and the “bowler” in cricket deliver the ball with an overhand throwing motion. So, can you develop a cricket player into a baseball player? They pretty much do the same thing, right?

As the career path of “philanthropic development professional” has grown over the past decade, managers have had to ask similar questions when it comes to developing talented employees. Can I develop a sales professional into a philanthropic development professional? They have cold-calling experience. They have great personalities. They are driven and have a great track record of getting in the door and closing sales. Can they become great at development?

I’ve heard this question answered both negatively and positively. Unfortunately, when it’s answered negatively, the manager has delayed quality results by a year or more, an employee is miserable and looking for a new career, and the hiring manager is back at square one and looking for talent in an even smaller pool of potential employees.

On the positive side, from my experience and from this summer’s movie example, quality training plays a large role in the success of the professionals who that have made the career switch. Here are some keys to success:

  1. Understand the work ahead. Both the hiring manager and the new hire must have a shared expectation of how hard they’ll both have to work and train together in the first two to three months to prepare the new hire to be successful.
  2. Address mental challenges. While metrics and spreadsheets can measure the progress of a new hire, they don’t capture the new hire’s personal mental reward assessment. Talk about the types of things that motivate the new employee.  Help them understand the differences between the rewards they received when closing a sale and the rewards of knowing they’ve helped someone reach their goals through philanthropic consultation. Simply talking about those differences has a positive effect on new employees as they adjust to the new pace of their expected “sale” while maintaining their previous pace of developing relationships.
  3. Lay the plan out on day one. Successful sales professionals assess themselves every day. As a manager, each day is vital as you empower new employees to grow into their role. A training plan that includes practicing cold calls and visits, a safe space to discuss questions, and a direct conversation about the differences between past experiences and future expectations can make the difference.
  4. Highlight strengths. Successful training facilitators highlight the trainee’s professional qualities, such as drive, initiative, and personality. Successful facilitators also show how long-term success is not found in short-term commitments, and how their own feelings of fulfillment through successful outcomes will be different in their new role.
  5. Be a team. Let the new hire shadow a more experienced employee on a visit. Build confidence in the new employee by sharing some prospects who are ready to be solicited.

Can a sales professional become great at development?  Yes! With training that addresses the day-to-day duties of a position while also focusing on the mental retraining of success measurement and motivation, professionals without backgrounds in philanthropic development can hit it out of the park!

Kyle Buchmann is the Managing Senior Director of Development for corporate and foundation relations at the University of Wisconsin and been active in training, coaching and business development in his current and previous roles outside of the organization.

Today’s Career Opportunities

Director, Advancement, Athletics, Simon Fraser University
Associate Director, Advancement, Simon Fraser University
Associate Director of Development, Arthritis Society
Senior Development Officer, Capilano University
Development Officer. Planned Giving, Covenant House
Manager, Philanthropy, BCSPCA

Senior Manager, Resource Development, Calgary Humane Society
Development Administrator, Dean’s Office, Schulich School of Engineering, University of Calgary
Fund Development & Events Coordinator, Wood’s Homes

Senior Development Officer, University of Toronto
Senior Advancement Officer, Humber College
Manager, Person to Person Campaign, Heart and Stroke Foundation
Development Officer, Mon Sheong Foundation
Manager, Resource Development, Mon Sheong Foundation
Senior Associate Manager, Corporate Partnerships, Heart and Stroke Foundation
Chief Philanthropy Officer, Heart and Stroke Foundation

Today’s PD Opportunities




Take Charge Of Your Career! Join Us At The Virtual Career Conference

By Phil Gerard

I am generation X and while my first job out of university was in fundraising, like many of my peers, I had a different career path in mind. We didn’t know that there was such a career as fundraising.

Today, the awareness is significantly stronger and many are choosing the fundraising career path deliberately. These aspiring fundraisers know that they want to be fundraisers and what position they want to eventually hold. Unfortunately, often the career path is not as clear. What is the best degree to become a fundraiser? Which fundraising programs to take? What do I have to do to become a Director of Development and how long does it take? How much will I earn?

In my  one-on-one meetings with aspiring fundraisers I get these questions asked a lot. Now you have an opportunity to have these and many other questions regarding your fundraising career answered by such accomplished professionals like Tom Ahern, Linda Lysakowski, ACFRE, Vanessa Chase, Krishana Palmer and many more.  And you don’t even have to leave your office! It is all virtual.

Join us on April 13th-15th 2015 for the Fundraising Virtual Career Conference. This is the first and hopefully annual Virtual Conference organized by Mazarine Treyz, Founder of and author of Get the Job! Your Fundraising Career Empowerment Guide, rated 5 stars by


I am honoured to have been asked to participate in the conference and I will be speaking about moving up to a major gifts role. I hope to see you there!

Check out some pre-conference interviews so you get a sense of what you can expect! 

Today’s Career Opportunities

Associate Director of Development, Arthritis Society
Director, Advancement, Athletics, Simon Fraser University
Associate Director, Advancement, Simon Fraser University
Director of Events, BC Children’s Hospital Foundation
Senior Associate Director, Faculty of Law, UBC
Major Gifts Officer, Arts Umbrella
Regional Executive Director, Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation
Donor Relations Coordinator, BC Children’s Hospital Foundation

Advisor, Principal Gifts (Development Office), University of Calgary
Senior Fund Development Manager, The Arthritis Society
Development Coordinator, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary

Fundraising Assistant, Canadian Cancer Society
Senior Development Officer, TVO
Development Officer, Humber River Regional Hospital
Donor Relations Coordinator, Humber River Regional Hospital
Vice-President, Fund Development and Communications, Christian Children’s Fund of Canada

Associate Director of Development, British Columbia Division, The Arthritis Society

The Arthritis Society

Role Profile:

As a key member of our Development team, the Associate Director is an established fundraising leader, with a particular expertise in broad-based fundraising programs, including major gifts and planned giving. The Associate Director provides strong, innovative leadership in the ongoing cultivation, solicitation, recognition and stewardship of key donors to The Arthritis Society, BC & Yukon Division.

As a key participant in developing and recruiting a regional Fund Development Committee of senior volunteers to support implementation of initiatives, he/she will be responsible for cultivating relationships with donors and other stakeholders, facilitating the ongoing stewardship of donors to maintain support and a positive image for The Society, developing corporate partnerships and ensuring they are effectively supported, growing existing programs such as events, major gifts and sponsorship programs including research and solicitation strategies and stewarding an active planned giving program.

This role will be based from our provincial office in Vancouver; there will be occasional travel within the province, as required.

Required Skills and Experience:

Essential experience includes a minimum of five years working in a fund development environment with at least two years spent in a senior management role. Post-secondary education is essential as is membership of the AFP. CFRE accreditation or working towards same is considered an asset.

The successful candidate will have the ability to present The Arthritis Society’s mission, vision, goals and fund development program with the highest professional standards, working collaboratively with the existing team. A seasoned professional, you will have demonstrated experience in developing strategy and securing major, planned, and annual gifts and special events sponsorship, as well as knowledge and experience with corporate and foundation solicitations. The capacity to work easily and effectively with a wide range of people, build relationships, be articulate and engaging and possess interpersonal skills to relate to and motivate prospective donors is essential for this position as is excellent time management, communications, decision-making, presentation and organizational skills. Strong leadership skills with the ability to think strategically and creatively, proven ability to inspire, motivate, mentor and develop staff and volunteers and proficient computer skills are also necessary with knowledge of Raiser’s Edge considered an asset.

This role will require flexibility to adapt weekly schedules in order to travel, and work the occasional evening and / or weekend. A valid driver’s license and access to a vehicle is also required.

The Arthritis Society offers a competitive salary and benefits in addition to an empowering and supportive work environment.

Gerard Consulting Logo Web

For more information, to receive the full position prospectus, or to apply in confidence, by April 10, please contact:

Gérard Consulting – Fundraising Talent Management
Phil Gérard, President

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until the position is filled. We thank all applicants for their interest, however, only those candidates invited for an interview will be contacted.

A blog about fundraising careers and fundraising issues. By Gérard Consulting – Fundraising Talent Management


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