In a field that is constantly changing and evolving, like nonprofit communications and marketing, it can be hard to create a professional development plan.
Sure, there are bedrock concepts and skills that don’t change much, like the importance of target audiences and clear calls to action and evergreen skills like good copywriting and storytelling. With so many people learning nonprofit communications on the job, filling in those foundational gaps is important.
But there’s so much that you can’t predict or plan for because the communications landscape is changing so fast.
For example, it’s been barely a year since Facebook allowed Pages to go live from a desktop computer, which opens up huge opportunities for TV-quality production values that you can’t do when going live from a phone. (You can see what I mean by watching some of our recent Facebook Lives. Not that we are TV quality yet, but you’ll see things like lower thirds.)
At some point, you simply have to be willing to go exploring and see where it takes you. Get lost on purpose. I feel like I do that all the time. In fact, we do it so often that we have a section in every one of our weekly e-newsletters titled “What We Are Exploring.” I share whatever it is that I am learning about that week.
On March 8, I’m teaching a brand-new webinar, For Nonprofit Communications Staff Only: How to Create Your Professional Development Plan. I’ll share what I think those fundamentals are that everyone should study up on and get experience with, but I’ll also share some ideas for how you might want to get lost on purpose in the coming months.
I’d love to hear your stories about getting lost on purpose! Share in the comments on this post.