Here’s the latest installment in our series on the “Day in the Life” of nonprofit communicators, where we ask you to describe your day in your own words.
We need more stories! Don’t be shy – tell us what you do in a typical day as a nonprofit communications pro.
Lisa Sherrill is the Communications Director of the Food Bank of Contra Costa & Solano. Since coming to the Food Bank in November 2006, Lisa Sherrill has strengthened the organization’s visibility and brand awareness to advance the Food Bank’s mission through strategic communications and creating innovative marketing strategies. She also directs education and advocacy efforts on the issue of hunger, and where the public can help. Her team inspires the community to take action to help nourish our most vulnerable neighbors.
She has served on the national Hunger Action Month committee for Feeding America and been a long-standing member of PRSA (Public Relations Society of America). Lisa is a graduate of San Francisco State University with a degree in International Relations.
And this is her typical day:
Before 8:00 a.m. – I wake up around 5:30 and try to get myself as ready as possible before my ten-month-old wakes up. Once he’s up, it’s a combo of trying to finish getting ready, getting him ready and entertaining him. I usually play a “good morning” playlist I have on Amazon Prime and that gets us both moving.
I also try to have lunches and bags packed the night before to help us get out the door a little easier.
I try NOT to check email before getting to the office. Instead, I check my First 5 app and maybe Instagram. 🙂
After I take my son to daycare (and play with the kiddos for a few minutes), I start my 45-60 minute commute. I listen to a book on Audible or my favorite podcasts via Stitcher and drink coffee.
8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m – Once at work, around 9:00 am, I open my Google calendar which I share with my team and check what is going on for the day.
I pull out my to-do list which I prepare at the end of the previous day.
My first task is glancing at my inbox for urgent emails and then moving to check and take action on emails in my “yesterbox” (google it – life changing).
10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. – Lunch is usually at my desk and is either brought from home (I try!) or from a local cafe.
While eating lunch I glance at my inbox again for urgent messages and also check social media. Then I move onto “Dire 1” (the first real to-do task on my list) and today that happens to be approving content for direct mail appeals.
12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. – At 1:00 on Mondays, I have a standing editorial meeting with two rock-star content developers on my team. We discuss whatever content we are currently writing and what we need help with. We all write, and we all edit each others’ work.
These meetings should take no more than 30 minutes so I can then move onto “Dire 2.”
2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. – I work on prepping for a board meeting and then move on to my final to-do list task for the day “Dire 3” – finish the monthly all-staff email.
After 4:00 p.m. – I end my day by checking my inbox if there is time and moving those emails to my “yesterbox” for tomorrow.
I then take any notes I’ve made on my to-do list and create three “Dires” for the next day.
I note any meetings or webinars on my daily draft before heading out the door by 5:00 pm. I *try* to end my workday then so I can be present with my family at home.
Thanks for sharing your day, Lisa!
Want to be featured in this series? Tell us what you do in a typical day as a nonprofit communications pro.