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Career Story: Director Of Operations For A Charity

Director Of Operations For A Charity

Job Title: Director Of Operations In Development/Fundraising In A Healthcare Institution

Type of Company: My institution funds research, care and education for a single, specific disease.

Education: BA, Education and Math, Boston College

Previous Experience: I worked as a director of development operations in two other fundraising departments at healthcare institutions.

Job Tasks: I oversee the day-to-day operations in a fund-raising department, ensuring donations are processed accurately and in a timely fashion. I also oversee the budget process, ensuring expenses are within budget and gap reports are produced for revenue projections. I provide oversight on personnel issues. I oversee the research department and assist in providing accurate prospect profiles. A typical day consists of meeting with my subordinates, troubleshooting, working on special projects for my boss and managing deadlines.

In the course of a given day, unexpected assignments come my way and it is my responsibility to assess everyone's workload and redistribute work when necessary in order to get the job accomplished. I am also the office manager and ensure that all is running smoothly in the office -- that equipment's functioning properly, supplies are well-stocked, etc. One of the most challenging aspects of this job is data integrity. It is very difficult to ensure accurate data without constantly double checking everyone's work. There are many details involved with data entry of gifts. It is not just entering the amount; there are about 22 fields that have to be entered for each gift, so each gift entry has to be proofed thoroughly. We also have to make sure we are adhering to donor intent. That means that if the donor wants it to go to specific research, we have to be sure that it does.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of the job is when everyone works as a team on a specific project. For example, when we have a big event, we all pitch in and do whatever it takes to get the job done.

The worst part of the job is when a mistake gets made and no one wants to take responsibility for it.

Job Tips: If you want to get into fundraising or any non-profit, remember that -
1.) Technology is not always up to date so be sure you can use older products. 2.) Don't burn your bridges. 3.) Remind yourself of the mission every day.

Additional Thoughts: What has surprised me the most is the lack of technology and systems in places I have worked. I believe one of the most important qualities to have is a calm demeanor.

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