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Show Your Boss Why They Can’t Skimp on Your Growth and Training

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When it comes to professional growth, if you aren’t moving forward, you are in effect floating backward. 

That’s an intimidating thought, but sometimes it lights a fire under people to keep learning. The fact you are reading this blog post tells me you don’t intend to float backward. 

But the sense of urgency about learning should also burn within your employer and your board. Because your progress is just as important to them as it is to you.

Some nonprofit leaders and boards don’t grasp this. They let a poverty mentality keep them from spending little (if any) on employee training. If you are in this situation, it’s frustrating. It can slow down your career. 

For you, it’s something like a speed bump that slows you down. You have ways of getting around it.

But for your employer, it’s much worse. It’s a slow-moving catastrophe that will eventually do deep and perhaps unrecoverable damage to the organization and its people. Whether you are a decision-maker for spending money on employee learning or an employee hoping to shake loose some funding for your own training, I’m going to make the case for nonprofits spending money on training their employees – from their point of view. 

Training is not just a nice-to-have perk for employees. It’s also not about helping employees keep up with a changing world. That’s important, but there’s a lot more to it. Helping employees stay currently trained is absolutely critical for an organization to survive.

Here are some of the key reasons it’s worth paying for training:

Training increases employee retention. During the Great Resignation, the top reason people gave for leaving a job was a lack of career development. More than money, benefits, or work environment. People want to grow. They will go where they can find growth.

Training people costs far less than replacing them. The cost to replace a departed employee is as much as twice the employee’s annual salary. A couple thousand spent on training is an absolute bargain compared to replacing someone who leaves for lack of training.

Workplaces with little or no training often find themselves in a vicious cycle of losing people, with hiring growing ever more difficult. High turnover crushes morale, leading to even more attrition. And word gets around. Would you choose to work at a place with high turnover?

Training improves productivity. Not only by improving specific skills, but by bolstering employees’ sense of empowerment and control in a broader way. They grow more efficient, effective, creative, able to perform their job better, and be positioned to take on new roles. Training also improves cooperation between departments, and breaks down silos. It helps people rise as thought leaders, confident in their ability to face the future. 

Training increases innovation and creativity. Employees who are exposed to new ideas and information grow more creative and more likely to apply what they’ve learned in new situations. They also develop broader perspectives.

Training is easier and less expensive than ever. Online training costs far less than in-person training, and can be just as effective. It also takes far less time.

There’s no good reason to skimp on training of nonprofit employees.

It’s probably the smartest investment an organization can make.

Looking for a high-impact, affordable, career-transforming source of fundraising training? Join The Fundraisingology Lab by Moceanic. You’ll get the tools, the information, and the supporting community that will take you to new places in your fundraising career. Join the waiting list now and you’ll be the first to hear when the doors open again!

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  • Jeff Brooks

    Jeff Brooks is a Fundraisingologist at Moceanic. He has more than 30 years of experience in fundraising, and has worked as a writer and creative director on behalf of top nonprofits around the world, including CARE, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Feeding America, and many others.

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