Buying fundraising books

Greetings peers in the fundraising sector.

Are you going to the Association of Fundraising Professionals conference this week?

Me neither!!!!

This will be the largest gathering of this conference ever with over 1000 delegates.

Can you imagine the knowledge and experience in the room this week?!
I can, and I won’t miss it because of budgets and other lame excuses.

Want to crash the party?
( Dear organizing committee, this is my way of supporting paid attendance.
Every fundraising professional should be fighting for budget to attend this conference.
Until that happens, we have to find our way in by hook or by crook. AFP Congress RULES! )

Here’s two good reasons and ways to do so.

1) I’m hosting a dinner off site on Tuesday night for out of town delegates and ANY other fundraiser who wants to attend. I have over 30 people coming right now. Only 15 of them are from the conference. Free event, easy venue.

Come out and network. ( 7pm Nov 30 @ Marche BCE/Brookfield Place )

2) Books!! There’s this crazy book booth, the best fundraising book sale in Canada happens at this conference and if you don’t go, you’ll miss it. So drop by the convention centre just to buy these books and save the shipping!

Many of them you can’t buy off amazon anyway.

Here’s the full list.

These are the books I highly recommend:

If you’re sick and tired of hearing about philanthropy 2.0 peek into the future with the “Dr. Who of fundraising” the always challenging Jon Duschinsky.

I don’t like this book because it’s like preaching to the converted. But if you’re a board member, new leader in philanthropy or if you’re a philanthropist yourself – this is a MUST READ.
(Warning: Read only if you want to do good,
NOT if you want to feel good )

Some people know me as “Mr. Networking” and after reading 25+ books on the subject this is still the number one book I recommend to anyone.

It’s not about handshaking and breath mints. This is the science of human interaction to help you succeed in work and life.

The booth is selling it cheaper than you can buy it off the shelf at Chapters

If you leave this conference with one book, if you’re on a budget but want to get a book that will challenge you and help with work….this is the one. At $15 it punches over its’ weight – a little cheater too because it summarizes another brilliant fundraising book inside!! This book is about the future of legacy giving in Canada and my number one read on the topic.

If you can’t make it to the dinner or won’t see me crashing the book booth on Thursday around lunch then come out to the “2nd Annual Linchpin Philanthropy Meetup” on December 7!

Who encourages your creativity? Moleskine plug!

Everyone needs someone who can rip them out of their routine
PUNCHES through the clutter of your life…
Who thinks in brilliant terms but from real world experience
Who pumps out ideas and touch points to inspire and challenge

Someone in my world who does this with consistency is Promod Sharma.

He SHOULD be a boring nerd being an actuary with decades of business experience.
These days he’s an advisor to professionals in the financial sector ( website & blog )
I know him as the original Seth Godin fan and marketing zeitgeist monitor.
With some killer blogs on marketing.
Every issue always has something to tempt my imagination.

Last month he highlighted a great set of articles on “the power of the notebook“. Not the movie that strikes fear into the hearts of men everywhere, the recording device.

I’ve always been a fan, but my shelf looked like this.

Then a series of articles in newspapers and magazines and two network contacts converted me to…..the moleskine.

Sure it’s got a great marketing spiel. But it’s the many stories of brilliant people who have used it along the way and the many small details that make it best in class.

I read about 2 books a week and listen to another 2 on audio. The non-floppy but small size allows me to write while jammed in shaky buses, subways, on the side of the road in my car, or in a daze on my nightstand.

They store well for easy reference. I have different colours by topic: black for audio books, red for written books, brown for networking. If you’re a fellow user, check out this great list of tips for using your moleskine!

Killer tip – a mentor of mine named Keith Lohnes of the Salvation Army (who has been around the world and back in service of humanity) transformed my world by sharing that he keeps 3, just 3 post-it notes stuck in every notebook and wallet. For transferring ideas, sharing things with contacts and reminders.

So, how do you capture your brilliance and who is stoking your fire on a regular basis?

Topic of conversation when we meet next.

In the mean time. Promod Sharma rules.

A Moment of Silence on November 11

For Canadians, today is a powerful and important day.

Today we Remember.

I would love to hear your stories of Remembrance – here’s mine.

It’s no secret, UofT is in my blood

– I bleed blue and white.

When I was a student at the University of Toronto I visited the Soldiers’ Tower, Canada’s second largest war memorial each November 11.

My first year I went up to the “memorial room“, the University of Toronto’s museum of Remembrance. There was a panoramic picture from the Great War, of students who were going to war, all lined up on front campus. They looked no different than me. I realized then the only difference between us was when we were born.

When I worked for the University I got connected to the Soldiers’ Tower Committee who stewards the Tower. I can’t tell you the real life stories of Veterans I learned. It’s not the ones that died, it’s the ones that returned home and never really lived a normal life.

If you know my personal motto ( to learn from the wisdom of others ) I have learned much from the members of this team being their youngest non-military member.

Each year since 2004 I take the day off and help run the UofT Remembrance Day events.

I have no doubt that you’ll join me today in a moment of silence at 11am.

Here are a couple shots of a memorial the engineers put together a couple years ago.

It was truly thoughtful and respectful, with the actual names of the alumni on each cross.

I am an arts student – so I truly feel that engineers are a dirty filthy bunch of purple turds with inflated ego’s and no social skills.

And if turds can respect and remember….

Can’t we all?

Time to get serious about looking

Job seekers are job seekers, easy to understand. I’m happy to help those that are openly looking.

I have a lot of tips to escape the HR toilet bowl swirl of internet application madness.

That’s the easy path.

But I have in my network, what I call “the army of the passionate”, at least 50 people who are “looking”.


Tonight I sat on the phone and listened to the story of a bully boss who reduced a peer to tears.

I’ve heard this story too many times.

Like Jimmy McMillan of “The Rent is Too Damn High” party running for Mayor of New York – I don’t have chance of making huge change. Although I am not a karate expert, I am a few cards short of a deck, sure.

But like Jimmy, I have to say my piece and run anyway.
Perhaps I can change just a few lives.

Maybe….just yours.

If I can, I’ll certainly die happy.

I can’t take any more stories of mothers fired on maternity leave, phone throwing, swearing, threats, miscarriages due to bosses, serious health risks because of some power tripping dirt bag. I can’t fight them, but I have to do something.

So! I have started a list in my LinkedIn contacts.
It’s 100% confidential, I will not share your intention with anyone without talking to you first. I’ll just send you what I hear about, keep you in the loop. Help with your search.

Let’s get you to a healthy place, a positive place, a place where you can do and be at your best.

Where you are succeeding not in SPITE of
but BECAUSE of your team.

Email me today at paulnazareth @ rogers dot com and I’ll add you to this list.

The HR process is broken, it’s time to get a little more skin in the game (you and me both!) and network like we mean it!

Ready to claim the job you deserve?

The challenge you were born for?

Let’s make like a tree – and get you out of there!

Why Starbucks rules

(Updated 2012)

 Starbucks means business.

Tim Hortons is Facebook.
Starbucks is LinkedIn.

Got to share this story. It is both cool and shares my addiction at the same time.

I had seven client meetings in one day, one after another. 7am to 7pm.

Four were in different Starbucks over a 20km radius.

I had one, one hour break in between my first and second meeting. Right next to my next meeting…was a Starbucks. So I went in.

Shut up. I know it’s sad, but as I tell my little one.  
Daddy needs his juice.

As I’m putting sugar in my coffee, I look to my left and sitting there is one of my LinkedIn connections ( an author ) who I’d pay money to listen to any time.

We get 15 quality minutes together.

Then as I’m getting up to leave, a guy approaches me noticing my “” bag and strikes up a conversation. This gentleman is a sector leader in my business and will launch at the largest fundraising conference in Canada, the single most interesting technology item that I’ve been waiting for, for the last ten years.

We’ve already booked a follow up meeting.

All that in less than 45 minutes.

This happens to me all the time. I can’t share enough about using Starbucks as a networking hub, whether you drink coffee or not.

As I think about the future of social business – the ‘bucks is named “most loved brand in social media” ( click here to read how they do it ). Now, more than ever, Starbucks rules.

I do have to figure out how to get the coffee smell out of my suits though.


If you seek adventure – meet The Doctor

At conferences there’s this thing that happens sometimes
The hot session gains buzz
people switch, the room is full

At AFP Congress in 2009, the largest fundraising conference in Canada,
the session was “Philanthropy is so …20th Century!”

And I met this guy – Jon Duschinsky

The session was so full I had to go out and get more chairs twice. It was still standing room only. The speaker was riveting and terrifying all at the same time. Making us think about the past, present and future of this sector in consideration of the “benevolent cloud” Vs. Decades of neat little donors sorted into databases and respond to prompts by mail and phone

So challenging was his talk that a senior fundraiser stood up, almost enraged and said “NO!” in so many words “donors must do what we tell them”

His answer “too late”.
“The future is now, they have the power and we have to deal with it”.

This was not some young punk talking about the potential of Facebook and text donations. This is someone who knows research, who the largest fundraising Association in the world had felt confident enough to publish. Someone who is in dialogue with fundraisers around the world..
Like the other 200 people in the room. I wanted more.

So I bought the book.

It didn’t disappoint.
I reached out to the author.

HE didn’t disappoint.

Since then we have talked a number of times and keep in touch.

I challenged him to help some fundraising students at a Humber Fundraising Network event I was planning. Jon showed up and was as gracious and challenging as ever.

His brilliance is only outdone by his authenticity and shared zeal for our work.

I wanted to give him a nickname, but I realized by my last blog post that the title of mad scientist was already taken (by David Love) – and then it hit me.

Jon is all about the UK and the European fundraising scene. He’s thoughtful, brilliant, adventurous, unpredictable and that hair!
Not only is he Dr. Who – he is the greatest Doctor of them all. Tom Baker. Being around him casts the same spell, he yearns for knowledge and wanders the globe constantly…yes indeed he is The Doctor.

Want to learn more?
Check out the site, read the book, check out Jon
Keep an eye on this guy – I often wonder what the future of philanthropy looks like.
But I know one thing for sure.
Jon will be there, leading the way.

You be the change Jon. I’ll be there, along for the ride.

The gift of a soapbox


Will do you good.

Yes. It’s a Cheryl Crow song.

But it’s something we know instinctively but reject and fear daily. I’ve been dreading it for years now.

Thanks to many mentors, peers and those I’ve helped – I’ve gained the experience, perspective and most of all the courage to accept and make a little change in my life today.

No I’m not leaving my current gig – anyone who knows me knows I love it. But that’s something I do for myself. My obsession and personal challenge.

I have accepted a faculty position, a part time teaching job at Georgian College.

I’ve had a chance to speak and teach on the subject – more recently thanks to the Humber Fundraising program, the Association of Fundraising Professionals and less recently the Canadian Association of Gift Planners who has had a huge impact on my career and life.

Thanks to all of the above and below this has become more of a love affair than just a career.

This teaching gig will allow me to empower others.
It will give me a chance to accelerate the missions of many charities.
In a small way it will allow me to give back and maybe shape the profession I deeply love.

And hey, no one turns down a soap box right?

I have strong beliefs on this sector.
This profession. Our shared future.

To pass on the many gifts of people I’ve studied under and watched, leaders in my community:

– The analytical power of Linda Pearson
– The process driven mind of Jill Nelson
– The magical positive productive world of Ann Rosenfield
– The Jerry McGuire of Planned Giving – Fraser Green
– Our mad scientist – David Love
– Our Captain Jack Sparrow – Ken Ramsay
– Our guardian angel, Dr. Pearce
– Mr. Hilborn, Hochstadt and Charters – Men of the printed word
– The many advisors in law ( Sweatman, Blumenfeld, Blumberg, Ponesse )
advised funds ( Ryan, Thorne, Burrows )
finance ( Two words – Ralph Smith! )
accounting ( Mr. Osborne, I do respect math )
and so many more who educated me in what they do so I can do what I do better…

And of course, our original Master and Commander
– Frank Minton and Lorna Somers….who gave me the time of day in my early years.

I once cornered well known financier Don Johnson in the washroom of a book launch to tell him that he was a rock star in my mind for his role in securities tax change…I should be thankful he doesn’t carry mace..
So many of you gave of your experience and knowledge – I’m finally paying dividends on your investment. Thank you for making it.

Today, just like the person at the top of this tower.
I realize I’m standing on the shoulders of many.

Thank you.
You have my humble gratitude. This is a pretty damn cool opportunity.

Most of all, thank you Georgian College!

I’m joining another great team.
And look forward to the days ahead.

As Cheryl Crow would say. Every day is a winding road.

Ps. My wife isn’t going to kill me. Yet.
We’ve had to adjust my weekly networking time allotment.

Sorry network, no more meetings after 5pm.

7am – 8:45am only.