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Report To Support

01161343bf91f9c438780daf80eba53c-huge-meSummer is the season for a lot of home improvement projects at my house. As I’ve been hanging shelves, cabinets, and other heavy objects from the walls, I’ve become increasingly appreciative of the studs behind the drywall that are reliably there to support my Pinterest-fueled home improvement dreams by keeping the many things I’m attaching to the wall from falling down.

Your finance team provides those same support beams for your organization, working behind the scenes to track the metrics and produce the reports that support your organization’s efforts, from planning a successful fundraising gala to increasing your number of sustaining donors to targeting the right donors for communications.

In order for your finance team to be fully supportive, though, there needs to be a culture of communication, collaboration, and connectivity at your organization. Finance needs to be in regular communication with every other team, from executive leadership to programs to marketing, so that everyone knows what types of reporting will best support these efforts.

At Blackbaud, we have identified four key pillars of a collaborative organization:
  • Trust: Teams must have the mutual respect, commitment, and understanding to trust each other.
  • Time: Make the time for teams to get to know one another so that they can develop trust and build personal and professional relationships.
  • Transparency: Supporters aren’t the only ones who need transparency. It’s just as important that teams are aware of each other’s goals, day-to-day operations, and deadlines.
  • Communication: Successful collaboration comes from regular, clear communication between teams. Share your challenges and successes across teams to build trust, improve understanding, and value one another.

You can find out more about the importance of trust, time, transparency, and communication in the Blackbaud Institute’s free eBook, The Connected Office. For tips and tricks on how finance and development teams can better support each other, check out this post on npENGAGE.

If you’re ready to dive into strategies for improving collaboration between finance and other teams at your organization, sign up for our Organizational Best Practices workshop, OBP: Finance—Organizational Collaboration, which is specifically designed to help finance professionals develop a plan to break down silos and collaborate more efficiently and effectively.

Do you have a story about how improving collaboration between teams has helped your organization? Share it in the comments below!
Posted by Jocelyn Wright on Jul 2, 2019 9:00 AM America/New_York

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Great post! Open and cross communication is critical. While we're a very small team, it's still possible to break the communication chain. We've recently started a weekly standing meeting that lasts no longer than 15 minutes to share happenings across teams - It's helped!
  • Posted Wed 17 Jul 2019 10:29 AM EDT
  • Posted Wed 17 Jul 2019 02:21 PM EDT
I liked this post and am downloading the eBook. Thank you for this resource.
  • Posted Fri 26 Jul 2019 09:47 AM EDT
Thank you so much for this resource! I feel like silo-ing of information is actually more of an issue in a small org where there is less intentional transparency between "teams" I am hoping to help resolve that issue with ideas from the e-book.
  • Posted Mon 29 Jul 2019 03:07 PM EDT
So happy to hear this was helpful, Jonathan and Susan!
  • Posted Thu 01 Aug 2019 02:33 PM EDT