Archive for the ‘Professional Development’ Category

Dan Cloran spoke at the Follett's Sports Business Forum at Ohio University on October 2.

Dan Cloran spoke at the Follett's Sports Business Forum at Ohio University on October 2.

Dan Cloran treated the Follett’s Sports Business Forum with an educational and inspirational presentation on athletics development and advancing in the world of sports. Cloran, the Executive Director of Athletic Development, Annual Fund, and Alumni Affairs at Xavier University in Cincinnati, gave the audience of undergraduate and graduate students many key tidbits to carry into the sports industry.

Cloran outlined his career path to his current position, which includes a stop in the retail world at Sherwin Williams before finding his true calling as the director of development and alumni affairs at Cincinnati’s Moeller High School. While at Moeller, Cloran learned the art of development and went on to work as a Development Consultant for Field Development Consultants.

Cloran described the steps he took to develop the All for One Club at Xavier University, which has led Xavier to double its annual fund during his tenure. While handling most of the day-to-day operations of the All for One Club during his eight years at Xavier, Cloran recently handed over the reigns to Matt Mattmiller to allow him to focus on more of the large donors at Xavier.

Cloran structures his presentation to the large crowd of undergraduates and explained what development really means. He stated that development isn’t fundraising, “that is selling candy bars,” but cultivating a relationship between a donor and the institution. He quoted one of the great developers of all-time, Roberto Clemente, to say, “If you have a chance to make life better for other and fail to do so, you are wasting your time on earth.” This is what Cloran tries to do on a daily basis.

Cloran concluded his talk by talking about some of his greatest success stories while at Xavier. These included cultivating a relationship with one Xavier’s biggest donors by changing light bulbs at their vacation home and helping them with whatever they need to be able to ask them for a donation and receive a commitment on the spot. He also told the story of using Xavier’s first African-American basketball player to show donors the influence they have on Musketeer student-athletes.

Cloran did a fantastic job of giving the audience a view into his every day life as a developer for Xavier University. It was clear to everyone in the audience that this man loves what he does and is very successful at it.

Read Full Post »

CincinnatiBengalsWade Martin, Senior Corporate Sales Manager at the Cincinnati Bengals, opened his presentation at the 2009 Follett’s Sports Business Forum with an engaging video of Jimmy Valvano’s speech at the 1993 ESPYs. While the speech is mostly remembered for the line, “Don’t give up, Don’t ever give up,” Martin highlighted an anecdote earlier in the speech where Coach Valvano spoke about “how to go from where you are right now to where you want to be.”

In highlighting this, Martin was stressing to the crowd to have a plan to achieve your goals, but to do so with an open mind. An Athens, OH native, his first job was at Miami (OH) University, a place he surely never thought he would work. Yet, he used this analogy to show the audience the importance of keeping an open mind. In the sports industry, there is no set to path to achieve your goals.

The presentation also stressed the point of staying humble and willing to do any job at any time. To do this, he used the football analogies that students should “mix the Gatorade, throw a block, and, in time, they will score a touchdown.

As far as what students can do while in school, Martin suggested they do not waste time, because there are plenty of others that will be working hard. They should also focus on an honest self-evaluation and experiencing events that are open to them.

In the end, students found Martin’s presentation both informative and practical, providing real world advice that can be applied right now and once they enter the sports industry.

Read Full Post »

ADF will be attending the Ohio Universtiy Sports Business Forum this weekend in Athens, OH. The forum, which features a wide variety of figures from sports business, will be held later today and Saturday.

On the schedule to present are:

ADF will be reporting on the insights and stories covered over the weekend. More posts and coverage of this event will be coming shortly.

Read Full Post »

CASElogoAs entry level professionals in the field of fundraising, we are always searching for best practices, role models, and benchmark institutions to which we can learn from in the coming years. One stepping stone of professional development that we feel is extremely important is to establish a personal set of guiding principles to which you can refer to whenever making an important decision.

These personal principles are certainly developed over time, but the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) has provided a starting block for those who are looking for guidance. Their suggestions, titled “Principles of Practice for Fundraising Professionals at Educational Institutions,” highlight a few of the key areas fundraisers should be aware of. We have chosen to include a few of them below:


  • Fundraising professionals must respect that their relationships with prospective donors, donors, volunteers, and employees are professional relationships and may not be exploited.


  • Safeguard and respect donor and prospective donor information.
  • Record and keep information relevant only to cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship.
  • Make sure that volunteers, vendors, and external entities with access to constituent information understand and agree to comply with the organization’s confidentiality and public disclosure policies.

Public Trust:

  • Provide prompt, responsive and truthful replies to donor and public inquiry in accordance with the organization’s stated policies.
  • Pursue gifts only that fall within, or advance, the institutions’s mission or priorities.


  • Be truthful about the institution’s mission, intended use of funds, and capacity of the institution to use donations effectively for the intended purpose.


  • Do not accept external compensation for the receipt of a gift or information leading to a gift.

For a complete list of CASE’s Principles, click here.

Read Full Post »

This presentation service can be used for many applications of athletics development.

This presentation service can be used for many applications of athletics development.

Presentations are a typical tool for almost all business situations. Whether it is a board room, an external operations meeting, or a major gifts ask, the presentation is a crucial part of athletics development.

That is where Animoto can come into play. Rather than make a simple PowerPoint presentation that is plain and uneventful, Animoto claims to be the end of all slide shows, making pictures video oriented with narration and editing capabilities.

The applications for this tool for development are many. For one, it could be used to display a new and exciting facility to get the ball rolling on a capital campaign. The photo effects could be utilized as a student-athlete piece to describe the importance of giving back. One could even use it as a way to recap a successful donor event where attendees can remember the special night by viewing the presentation.

Click here to view a quick demonstration video that shows just some of the capability of this tool. Quick and easy to learn, Animoto can be used as a unique presentation avenue to stir the creative juices in development offices around the country.

Read Full Post »

NACDAToday Rob and I attended the Fundamentals of Athletics Development (FOAD) session at NACDA. During this time we were able to dicuss the art of development with young fundraisers as well as hear some best practices from successful industry professionals. More posts on the knowledge shared during this session will come later, but here is a small sample.

Stephen Ponder, Senior Associate Athletics Director, Development and the Sun Devil Club at Arizona State University and , spoke on the first steps taken after breaking into the industry. In the conclusion of his speech, Ponder highlighted some of his operating principles, which follow:

  • Be passionate about what you are doing
    • Ponder stated that as a fundraising professional, you cannot raise money if you are not passionate about your job. People will give to those who can display their passion for the school and also the position.
  • Follow up with people
    • This was interesting as he commented that not only should donors be sent a follow up thank you, whoever gave you the contact should recieve one as well. This increases the lines of communication and keeps everyone on the same page.
  • Know your priorities
    • Every development professional should be cognizant of what they are supposed to do every single day. Whether it is notes, calls, visits, or other duties, a fundraiser should know what they need to do.
  • Customer service
    • Ponder emphasized that this is a crucial part of the operation, but it did not mean always telling the donor yes. It also means treating everyone with respect and in a way that shows you care. If a certain benefit occurs at one level, don’t bend the rules and provide it to lower levels. It diminishes your brand.

Read Full Post »

Bob Beaudine's book is full of great information for development professionals.

Bob Beaudine's book is full of great information for development professionals.

I recently finished reading the book, The Power of Who by Bob Beaudine and would highly recommend it for any professional in the development industry. Beaudine, who is the president and CEO of Eastman & Beaudine, runs one of the top recruiting firms in the United States and frequently places athletics directors in positions around the nations.

In his first book, Beaudine introduces an innovative approach to networking and growing your professional network. By instituting the “100/40” strategy, he recommends everyone write down their 100 personal and professional goals and the 40 people who will help them achieve their dreams. Instead of making contacts and networking with random professionals, this approach will help his readers focus and concentrate on the people who care about them and are willing to help accelerate their career.

Additionally, Beaudine encourages his readers to make life lists, coaches them on traits of successful people (he would know from his executive placement firm), and helps them create their own brand. Taking a conversational tone, he relates many stories that help develop the story and keep reader interest. To get the full effect, be sure to read the book and take his words to heart.

Beaudine also operates a blog where he continues to promote his ideas and applications of the book. Check it out here.

The following are some interesting quotes lifted from the text:

  • “If you want to have somehting that you’ve never had before, you’ve got to be willing to do something that you’ve never done before.”
  • “Presentation is everything. If you’re fully prepared when you walk into the room and confident enough to answer any questions or challenges, you’ll win.”
  • “The choice of what will happen to you is the result of all the little decisions you make every day”

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »