I had a dark moment.
Those five words capture the internal agony of a popular female celebrity during the COVID-19 pandemic. Adjusting to a new normal was part of her challenge, and in her turmoil, she acknowledged that she wrestled with severe anxiety. Pulling out of the downward spiral included sharing her struggle with a friend who cared. We’re all susceptible to tumultuous hours, days, and seasons. Valleys and hard places aren’t foreign but getting out of such places can be challenging. And seeking the assistance of those ready to help or lend an ear is often necessary.
Which describes the experience of GoodWorks 360° (our long-standing pro-bono consulting foundation) throughout the pandemic, founded upon our stated mission on behalf of good nonprofits everywhere; “sustaining your mission for good”. Prior to the pandemic, we independently, and with the generous, donated help of our VIP (Virtual Impact Partners) Team, we were able to deliver upon our mission across the USA and beyond –with the vast majority of our engagements focused on core operations guidance, such as recruiting, web development, fundraising, etc.
One such engagement graciously and ever so capably was led by our VIP Yvonne Jones, who invested considerable time and effort in enhancing the specific social media needs of Ellie’s Rainy Day Fund (whose mission is to protect the love shared between local families and their pets by funding emergency and specialty veterinary car). And then there was Sandy Nagel, who offered invaluable practical guidance to IPride, a self-esteem, empowerment program for youth founded by Laura Gray.
And then came the dark moments and the uncertainty of COVID-19 —which from our vantage point, created an even greater challenge for nonprofits versus that experienced by everyday businesses, primarily due to staff lacking the requisite depth of “change management” experience needed to deal with all of the uncertainty.
Notable was the seismic shift in the nature of our requests for help —moving entirely away from day-to-day operational help to high-level strategic help, with Executive Directors seeking verbal help borne of the wisdom of experience.
The vast majority of them had never encountered such unforeseen change and all wanted the comfort of perspective, coupled with readily-accessible advice. In essence, our consulting shifted from routine operating guidance to that of “lending an ear” through difficult times, underpinned by active, intentional listening and all the compassion we could muster. And although the deepest of the dark moments are behind us, our ongoing dialogue with the nonprofit community continues, with new (deeper) relationships formed and new friendships made.
We don’t do it all, but we do it all for good.
At 360° Nation, we focus often on the notion that “shift happens”. We’re honored to be poised to weather those “dark moments” with our growing community of nonprofits as the shift continues to happen. We continue to be amazed at just how much so little effort can positively impact the lives of so many. And we are eternally grateful for everyone one of our VIP team members who remain poised to step up “for good”… Do reach out if you’d like to lend your skills “virtually” as a member of our GoodWorks 360° VIP Team.