Conferences & Training
Leadership in Development

Day 1 Day 2 Day 3
Day 1, Wednesday, Dec. 12

NOON-1:00 PM

Welcome, Faculty Introductions and Conference Overview
Join chair Dondi Cupp to meet the faculty and learn how to get the most out of your time at the conference.

Assessing Your Leadership Skills and Building Your Personal Leadership Brand
Strong and effective Development leadership requires self-awareness and constant attention to assess and build skill-based competencies that will contribute to long-term success. At the same time we are building a broad range of skills, we must also remember to create a clear personal leadership brand. Dondi will lead you through the self-assessment and brand building process to help identify steps to strengthen your overall leadership platform.

Elective Sessions (select one):

  • Building Culture & Ensuring Employee Engagement in Your Organization
    Management tenants say the most important thing a leader can do is establish a common culture that engages staff in a greater good. Our two presenters will discuss how this can be applied by leaders to their advancement shops. From “why does it matter” to “what impact can it have on results” our presenters will discuss strategies to think about culture in different environments that allow for greater success in leadership and fundraising.
  • Survival Skills in Your New Leadership Role
    You’ve got the job, but you realize that it doesn’t come with a survival manual. You need to survey the political landscape, build credibility and establish rapport with your boss, colleagues, and your team in fairly short order. This session will provide guidance and insights to help you acclimate to your organization’s ecosystem and not only survive, but thrive.

A Conversation with Dr. Walter M. Kimbrough
Hear from Dillard University President Dr. Walter Kimbrough as he shares his pathway to leadership, lessons learned along the way, and his thoughts on what it means to be a leader in turbulent times. Opportunities for Q&A will be provided so please bring your questions.

Networking Reception
Join conference faculty and your colleagues to network and unwind after Day 1. Complimentary hors d'oeuvres and drink tickets will be provided. Don't forget your business cards!

Conference Adjourns for the Day
Dinner on your own

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Day 2, Thursday, Dec. 13

8:00-9:00 AM

The Essentials of Leading High Preforming Teams
An essential competency for leaders of any size Advancement program is the ability to form and lead high performing teams. From making the right hires to creating a clear understanding of what success looks like, today’s Advancement leaders must master the ability to get people wearing many different hats to work seamlessly across the organization. If it’s true that Advancement is the ultimate team sport, taking a coaching approach will be key to ensuring that your team is successful, engaged, empowered, and having fun too.

Elective Sessions (select one):

  • Proven Approaches to Problem Solving and Decision Making
    Over time, the quality of decision making plays a major role in defining the success of Development leaders. Just as they are in life, problem solving and decision making skill are important for managers and leaders to develop and refine, often through trial and error. In this session the presenters will share a framework for decision making for both complex and simple decisions that will help improve the quality of your approach to solving problems.
  • Managing Up, Down and Sideways
    To be successful in your new role you have to manage in every direction almost simultaneously. In this session, the presenters will pose the questions that one must be able to answer in order to do this effectively and also share real world examples from their own experiences – both of what and what not to do.

11:45 AM-1:15 PM
Lunch on your own

Using Metrics to Manage and Drive Stronger Performance
As the expectation for better and more effective managers in the Development profession continues to grow, managers must embrace a robust set of tools that can actually make their jobs simpler. With customized performance metrics and improved portfolio management systems, fundraising managers have access to data that can help them manage better and drive stronger results. But what are the data telling you, anyway? Join David Lively and Dondi Cupp as they share lessons learned from a decade-plus journey of partnering on metrics to challenge the status quo in major gift fundraising.

Elective Sessions (select one):

  • Complex Challenges of Leading in a Complex Environment
    Development leadership positions in Universities and academic medical centers are complex. Although we might believe our jobs are primarily about delivering fundraising results and fundraising leadership, we often have formal and informal reporting relationships with deans, department chairs, and directors of centers and institutes that make our jobs challenging. Balancing our responsibilities with internal and external stakeholders is an important component to achieve success. This session will focus on the obstacles development leaders and staff often face and solutions for leading teams in complex environments and organizations.
  • Diversity & Inclusion - Driving Success for Today's Leaders
    Demographics in the US are rapidly changing with data indicating by 2055 we will be a minority-majority population. Strategies to promote diversity and inclusion – in hiring and talent management, alumni engagement and fundraising – are fundamental requirements in toolkits of advancement leaders. In this session, we will explore how advancement leaders effectively engage shifting student and donor populations as well as promote inclusive recruitment, retention, and leadership development practices that produce and develop the best workforces.

Case Studies in Ethical Leadership
In their dual roles as fundraisers and managers, advancement leaders must regularly confront ethical dilemmas as they navigate the complex culture of higher education. In this session the faculty will discuss real-world challenges and engage in a lively conversation replete with interactive Q&A.

Conference Adjourns for the Day
Dinner on your own

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Day 3, Friday, Dec. 14

8:00 - 9:00 AM

9:00 - 10:15
All I Have Are Carrots: Leading without Direct Authority
Many advancement professionals are called upon to provide leadership when they have no formal authority over the people they wish to influence. In this session, we will discuss this particular challenge and the behaviors and skills that help us overcome it. Perhaps together, we can prepare to lead so others will follow. Otherwise, as the saying goes, we are just taking a walk.

10:30 - 11:45
Closing Faculty Panel
Participate in an interactive, moderated panel, which will cover details to consider as you plan your next steps. The conference faculty will share advice and tips to help guide you to your goal. Plenty of opportunity for Q&A will be provided.

Conference Adjourns

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