A Day in the Life of a Nonprofit Communicator – Rebecca Powell
Here’s another in our new series, profiling the days of nonprofit communications professionals . . .
Rebecca Powell is with the Gluten Intolerance Group, which has about 95 branches across the US. Rebecca is in charge of coordinating these branches, which are all run by volunteers. She has always enjoyed writing and research and this job allows her to do both, as well as giving her a chance to interact with people on a daily basis. She believes it is the best of both worlds.
Here is her typical day:
Wednesday, August 21st
Before 8:00 am: The cat woke me up at 6, so I got up at 6:15 and played a game on my phone until it was time to get ready for work. I started thinking about my to-do list as I drove into the office.
8:00 am – 10:00 am: The first thing I did was check out my email. After I deleted the unwanteds, I checked for anything urgent from the boss, then anything quick. Most of the rest of my emails go on hold until after I read any newsletters that came in overnight. Then, I finished my emails and start working up a completely revised to-do list for the day. I have usually been interrupted 5-6 times by then with requests and phone calls, so my to-do list is always left incomplete and growing.
10:00 am – 12:00 pm: This is when I get a lot of my work done. I created business cards and sent out welcome emails to all of the new branch leaders. I created branch webpages for each of them and added them to the website.
10:30 am: I had a meeting with the executive director about the branch visits that I have scheduled her for. This resulted in my revamping three different presentations, and I was charged with putting together the handouts and welcome packets for the next meeting.
11:30 am: I created a letter to go out with the next Kids Club magazine and put the next magazine into a completed pdf, ready for printing.
12:00 pm: I pulled out my Kindle and had lunch, while I read my current book.
12:30 pm: I went back to work. I updated the website for the upcoming conference and made sales calls to try to get more exhibitors lined up.
1:30 pm: I worked on finishing up my mass communication with our branch leaders (we send it out to 300). It is basically a newsletter, with articles written by me. I sent it to our reviewer and she gave me some edits to make.
2:00 pm: I started creating content for our monthly newsletter, which goes out to 9900 people every month. We usually provide two recipes, a research article, something about health living, and anything in the news in the gluten-free community. Today was mostly deciding on a theme and starting to come up with content to match.
3:00 pm: I ran credit cards and updated our database.
3:30 pm: I finished putting together the materials for the boss’s meeting tomorrow.
After 4:00 pm: I work until 4:30 at the office and this is the best time to talk to some of our east coast volunteers. So, this when I make those phone calls and finish up anything outstanding. I almost never have the time to prepare for tomorrow. I barely remember to fill out my time card.
I have been told repeatedly, and with emphasis, that I should not do any work at home. Therefore, when I get home I do a little bit of strategic planning and idea gathering, but no actual “work.”
How about you? What’s your day like? Feel free to leave comments on this and other “day in the life” posts, and to fill out the survey yourself.