#36 | Is social media a barrier to developing the skills most desirable to our employers?

I don’t suspect many nonprofits will be reducing their use of social media anytime soon. However, Hayley Gullen’s (www.scepticalfundraiser.com) recent decision to quit social media raises two important questions. First, what happens if our donors begin to make similar decisions for themselves? And second, what if social media is interfering with our ability to develop the skills most desirable to our employers?

Critics are encouraging us to ask whether the advantages of social media come at the cost of meaningful relationships. This critique was the focus of my recent podcast conversation with Hayley and raises important questions for fundraising professionals who find it difficult to have meaningful conversations with their donors; conversations that are often the prerequisite to greater levels of support.

In addition to interfering with our ability to achieve our financial goals, Cal Newport, author of Deep Work and Digital Minimalism: Choosing a Focused Life in a Noisy World, warns of an increasing divide in our current economy where the losers are those whose skills are easily automated and outsourced; skills that often resemble our patterns and habits on social media. When it comes to fundraising, the losers will no doubt be those most fascinated with everything arms-length and the winners will be those most often at the lunch table with their phones turned off.

If you’d like to read more about Hayley’s recent decision, go here.

How Fundraising Really Works Roadshow

We are very grateful to David Hutchinson and the team at Cause Leadership for partnering with us to bring How Fundraising Really Works to Toronto. Later this month, (Thursday, February 28th) we will be at the National Club in downtown Toronto. Seating is always limited to 40 for these events so please register early. Looking further down the road, we have already confirmed dates in Philadelphia, Raleigh, Washington DC, Worcester, MA and NYC. If you’d like to get more information about these upcoming roadshow dates, go to my website at lewisfundraising.com/events

As a reminder, if you’d like to be a guest on The Fundraising Talent Podcast, visit lewisfundraising.com/signup

Jason Lewis