Welcome to our latest installment in our series on the “Day in the Life” of nonprofit communicators! This series lets you describe your workday in your own words.
We’d love to feature YOU in this series! Don’t be shy – tell us what you do in a typical day as a nonprofit communications pro.
As the Director of Marketing, Scarlett is responsible for marketing and public relations for the Air Force Enlisted Village, Inc., a 501c3 nonprofit organization that provides a home for surviving spouses of retired enlisted U.S. Air Force personnel. She is also responsible for marketing Bob Hope Village, a 55+ independent living community, and Hawthorn House, an assisted living and memory support residence on the Bob Hope Village campus, to prospective residents. Scarlett has 20+ years of experience in public relations, marketing, sales, communications, event planning, and fundraising. Scarlett “geeks out” over marketing, writing, communications, social media, graphic design, video, photography, public relations, digital technology, and AP Style.
And this is her typical day:
Before 8:00 a.m. – I am all about checking email, social media, and news headlines of the day. I check my email every morning before work and respond to messages, if needed.
I am always looking for any Talkwalker Alerts with media mentions about the Air Force Enlisted Village, Bob Hope Village (our independent living community), Hawthorn House (our assisted living and memory support residence), or our events. (Talkwalker Alerts is a free alternative to Google Alerts.)
I also read through headlines and articles on the news app on my phone. I then scan AFEV’s social media sites and monitor engagement and messages. I liked messages and responded to a few. Today I hid a random off-topic message from a Facebook follower so only he could see his comment on one of our posts.
I also review the social media sites for the Emerald Coast Public Relations Organization (I currently serve as president), Emerald Coast Gives Back (our community’s #GivingTuesday campaign) and my personal social media sites. I often receive work related messages through my personal Facebook page or Messenger.
8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m – I call my mom and chat with her on my drive in to work. Once I arrive at the office, I make a cup of hot water with honey and lemon and then get settled at my desk.
My priority project for today (and tomorrow) is completing our 2016-2017FY annual report. Our CEO requested I move it to the top of my “to-do” list. A donor asked him for a copy of our recent financials. Our 990 and our audited financials are posted on our website, however our CEO prefers we have a hard copy annual report to give out when requested.
I told him my plan for this year was to create a 4 page annual report that included a “listicle” from him titled “5 Things I’m Proud of This Year”, list of our board of directors, short stories with photos of our residents, impact data, and a financial snapshot that our CFO gave me. The CEO liked the idea but still prefers to have the complete audited financials included in the annual report.
I then provided him with an outline and a cover concept for the annual report which he immediately approved. I began gathering my content into one folder on my desktop and started the rough layout and design of the annual report.
10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. – Today was staff meeting day. Typically we have our meetings in our headquarters’ (the building in which I work) conference room, but today we held the meeting at Bob Hope Village community center.
I caught a ride there via a golf cart with the administrator of our assisted living residence and the director of health services. We’re located in the Florida panhandle and it was 38 degrees this morning. It was a brisk ride but we made the best of it by singing “Jingle Bells” on the way to the meeting.
We recognized our employee of the year at the meeting so I took some photos of her. Once I returned to my desk, I forwarded the photos to our human resource director and posted one on our intranet.
12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. – I had two back to back webinars today so I had no choice but to eat my leftover salad from last night’s dinner at my desk during the webinars.
The first webinar was a quarterly update from our email marketing software about all the new features that will be rolling out in the next year.
The second webinar was an internal communications webinar about using O365 Sharepoint.
2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. – There was a knock at my door just as my last webinar ended.
Scarlett with resident
It was one of our residents that I haven’t seen in a while. She stopped by to wish me a Merry Christmas.
One of the things I love about my work is that we are encouraged to “visit” with residents.
We have what we call “The Mom Rule” here and all employees agree to it. Essentially, it means that we treat our residents like they are our own moms.
After the visit, I went back to work on the annual report.
It was getting close to the end of the day, so I jotted down my “to-do” list for the next day.
After 4:00 p.m. – I try not to work from home unless I have a deadline.
I do take some time to review emails and social media again in the evening and respond if needed. I schedule all the posts in advance but l check to make sure anything needs edited.
Thanks for sharing your day, Scarlett!
Want to be featured in this series? Tell us what you do in a typical day as a nonprofit communications pro.