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Tips for the fundraising professional’s job search

A quick personal note (which I try to stay away from on my fundraising blog): We moved here after years of wanting to be in southern California for the warmer climate, the culture, the food and of course to be able to surf more often!

Being a fundraising professional on a job search in a city where nobody has ever heard of you isn’t an easy task. Yet for some amazing reason I have had the chance to interview for some pretty incredible non-profits doing life-changing work in the Los Angeles area.

I wanted to pass along a few tips I do during the job process here. Some of these I realize are just :

Do not be in a hurry.

Get very comfortable with working with recruiting firms, especially ones who don’t necessarily show that much respect for fundraising professionals or non-profit professionals as a whole.

Focus on getting in front of those who would actually hire you. This means rocking it through the recruiters.

As with any job, write an eye-opening cover letter specific to the position. Remember that you want to get in front of the person who will actually decide to hire you.

Be early to your interview.

Study the budget before the interview. For fundraisers this is crucial.

Don’t promise the world. Focus on your past experiences and successes.

Dress for success.

Have a list of seven professional references that includes folks who you have reported to, who have reported to you, board members and professional contacts.

I think that’s a good start!

Thanks for reading!

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