When You Become a Force for Grounded Hope and Inspired Action, Anything is Possible

Discover how to bring new energy to your work for the greater good

What would happen if you and everyone around you could break through to a new level of success in advancing your cause? (Maybe even to do something that seems “impossible” right now.)

What if you could move people past the scarcity mindset that pervades the social sector — those commonplace (yet unspoken) assumptions about limited resources and limited possibility?

What if each and every person aspired to bring out the best in others, so everyone can make their greatest contribution?


And what could be possible if all of us — professionals, donors, and volunteer leaders alike — moved forward together, shoulder-to-shoulder, to take bold action fueled by belief in each other and what we can accomplish?


What does working "shoulder-to-shoulder" look like? Hear Jeff Cook — civic leader, board member, philanthropist — speak to the value of slowing down, listening, and maybe even being a bit vulnerable. (Like many who end up getting the most from our retreats, Jeff arrived with a touch of humility. He even wondered out loud whether he would fit in. After just a few moments in the room with us, his doubts had floated away.)

 

In the urgency of the day-to-day, it's easy to lose sight of the true potential of our work. Listen as Megan Riebe speaks to the strategic importance of big dreams — and the joy to be found in facilitating meaningful philanthropy. (At her first retreat with us, Megan was accompanied by her university's president. Less than two years later, she is now leading her own Philanthropic Quest retreats as one of our certified facilitators.)

 

Burnout is a constant hazard for those in the social sector (especially in development). Early in his 29 years with Mayo Clinic, Jim Hodge found himself on the brink. Exposure to fresh ideas gave him a new mindset and sparked an exceptional career. Listen as he speaks to the spirit behind his work — key to his success in facilitating breakthrough philanthropy. (Today, Jim collaborates with entrepreneurs who make dramatic investments in medical research and innovation at the University of Colorado.)

 

What does working "shoulder-to-shoulder" look like? Hear Jeff Cook — civic leader, board member, philanthropist — speak to the value of slowing down, listening, and maybe even being a bit vulnerable. (Like many who end up getting the most from our retreats, Jeff arrived with a touch of humility. He even wondered out loud whether he would fit in. After just a few moments in the room with us, his doubts had floated away.)

In the urgency of the day-to-day, it's easy to lose sight of the true potential of our work. Listen as Megan Riebe speaks to the strategic importance of big dreams — and the joy to be found in facilitating meaningful philanthropy. (At her first retreat with us, Megan was accompanied by her university's president. Less than two years later, she is now leading her own Philanthropic Quest retreats as one of our certified facilitators.)

Burnout is a constant hazard for those in the social sector (especially in development). Early in his 29 years with Mayo Clinic, Jim Hodge found himself on the brink. Exposure to fresh ideas gave him a new mindset and sparked an exceptional career. Listen as he speaks to the spirit behind his work — key to his success in facilitating breakthrough philanthropy. (Today, Jim collaborates with entrepreneurs who make dramatic investments in medical research and innovation at the University of Colorado.)

Could we create the kind of world we want?


People who work to advance social causes and institutions of social good are natural optimists. (Or at least they start out that way.)

They see a cause they believe in, a problem they want to solve, an ideal they want to advance. Then they dive in and contribute the best of themselves — their time, money, energy, ideas, heart.

And they quickly run into roadblocks.

Those who invest themselves through philanthropy and volunteer leadership face uncertainty about what to do, the fear they will do it "wrong" and open themselves to criticism, and a certain unease about the way organizations treat them. Perhaps above all, they fear not having the impact they long to see in the world. (I've been surprised to hear sharp notes of self-doubt even from people who seem to have accomplished a great deal through philanthropic leadership.)

Development professionals and other professional leaders bump into their own hurdles. They enter the field believing it’s great, purposeful work. And it is indeed a high calling. But it's also a challenging profession, filled with "conventional wisdom" and institutional pressures that get in the way of maximum success. (The turnover and recruitment crises in the development field are just one sign of these difficulties.)

Bring those two "sides" together — the professionals on one side and the donors and volunteers on the other — and even more obstacles spring up. There’s a deep-seated reluctance to engage in potentially vulnerable conversations (the shared explorations of values and dreams that lead to real breakthroughs).

What’s more, power differentials are almost always left unacknowledged and unresolved. Sometimes we see misunderstanding (and even mistrust) of one another, combined with fear, scarcity mindset, and small thinking.

For these and countless other reasons, the two “sides” wind up holding each other at arm's length instead of building deep, lasting, creative partnerships.

With all that going on, "making a difference" can get to be lonely and exhausting. We can give it our all and do our very best as individuals, but unless we tackle these larger questions head-on, we will accomplish less than we might have. Much less than is possible. 

If we can take a stand together, right now at this pivotal moment, we will dramatically increase the positive impact of everything we do.

My whole purpose is to give you — and everyone around you — the deep understanding that will let you release human potential for the greater good ... the grounded optimism that will sustain you for a lifetime of inspiring contribution ... and the trusting relationships it takes to turn your most audacious dreams for the world into reality.


Welcome to the adventure!


~ Jim Lord

Jim Lord

Choose Your Path

Do you support a cause by investing your time, money,
and energy?

Do you have a sense that more is possible for the ideals that matter to you? Are you open to fresh approaches that will bring renewed energy to your philanthropic investments, board or civic leadership, or other voluntary action for the greater good?

Are you a CEO, CDO, or other leader* with development responsibilities?

​Would you like to inspire everyone around you, so you can activate the unlimited spirit of contribution more than ever before? (Trust me, you are not aware of everything you have going for you.) What could that make possible for you and for your cause?

* Some programs are also open to experienced major, principal, and planned gift officers who want to step up to a new level. If that's you, see this special invitation.

As I grew in my leadership roles, Jim Lord helped me visualize where donors and non-profit organizations converge — where we can make the difference in a positive, human, and ethical way. This work has inspired more than 6,000 professionals, donors, and board members Procura has trained in Mexico and Latin America.

Marcela Orvananos de Rovzar

Entrepreneur, philanthropist, and leader of civil society in Mexico and around the world

In university advancement, intense pressure to “meet the metrics” can lead to unhealthy outcomes. Too many fret over mechanics but ignore deeper meanings and natural human connections. Jim’s approach lets leaders shape organizational culture with greater wisdom and humanity, for sustainable performance.

Rod Kirsch

Senior Vice President Emeritus for Development and Alumni Relations, Pennsylvania State University;
Consulting Vice President, Grenzebach Glier

Jim Lord’s visionary thinking begins with the very first visit, making it possible for me to raise millions of dollars. This is a thoughtful, transformational experience. I'll always be grateful to the board chair who first recommended this program to me.

Judi Cantor

Director of Planned Giving, Harvard T H Chan School of Public Health

Talk with us

Email: programs@leadershipphilanthropy.com

Phone: usa  +1 (206) 347-9546

privacy policy and terms of service


© 2017 The Center for Leadership Philanthropy. All rights reserved.