Thursday, December 24, 2015

Christmas Road

ecard  from

    Wisner Family -December 2015
Coming to a Crossroads  this year, the Wisners  faced many challenges (family, financial, faith and fun.       What road to take?  How about Highway ONE!
Jenna (Rogue) - Darkness turned to light as she turned into a Daisy.  Career gambits and academic choices created confusion.  Still a Nurse at Christ Hospital, she took a  detour from Xavier to follow real world CNO's, COO's and CRO's (Chief Real Estate Officer).  Learning leverage, she traded her freestyle into rogue paper trading.
Ellen (Freestyle) - With a license of independence, Ellen branched out into Big Sister lands (Oakley).  Was it the corral at JH Ranch, Mid-Ohio defensive driving certificate, or one on one coaching that navigated her into the National Honor Society, Captain of JV Tennis, and GPA excellence? A first official pay stub prepared her for future financial competition.  So where is she going to college?  She ACT's like it's a mystery.
Garen (Lincoln MKX)  - At JH Ranch, "the feeling stayed with him" and the stubble remained on his face.   Crown him with new cooking skills - soups, smokers, and sauces.  His loyalty to Miami U. continues - or is it the hockey tickets.  Now a turnaround real estate star, it was a war to get 100% occupancy.  "Take the long way... huh"
Susan (Like a Rock) - New detailing transformed Susan into the family's financial friend.  Her back office shines 24 by 7.  Now preaching, praying and pausing, she recites Dave Ramsey's advice during her coup d' etat on the family's active trading.  But her capital gain is in giving to others (Emmaus, Nuptials, Stewardship, and Sunday Attendees).  
From Gulf to Coast, the Wisner's added San Fran and New Orleans to their family vacation map.  Other trips included KS, TX, NY, and AZ.  New car expenditures put a dent in the finances.  However modest spending at home allowed everything to "go on the table".   
Flora celebrates this Christmas in Heaven taking the high road in life.  The journey for the rest of us is still ahead - Dad's 90th proves that! So this Christmas season, understand that every day we face a new crossroad - a decision of what path to follow.
We are blessed that our roads intersect and that we continue to travel together in this spiritual journey,     with you, toward God.
 Merry Christmas and Happy New Year
    "When you come to a fork in the road.....  take it"   Yogi Berra (1925-2015)

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Statistics Tell; Stories Sell

I met with A.S. yesterday and our conversation immediately went to the topic of fundraising.  It's on my mind after Crossroads just finished their "All In" campaign and raised over $85 Million (yes that is million). 

A.S. sent me an article by Jerold Panas : "The 60 smartest things you'll ever hear about fundraising".  It was #28 - Statistics tell; Stories Sell that spoke so clearly to me.  Crossroads definitely can show the numbers -  food pounds delivered, Go Cincinnati hours, mission trips, women saved from sex slavery, sponsored Nicaraguan children, baptisms, man camp participants, etc.-  all just statistics.

Yet it was the stories and testimonials of change that created a visceral giving feeling in others.   In corporate terms - the Stories Sell. I naturally passed on this article to the SVP Cincinnati Full Throttle membership drive team members.  We are educating our partnership on the skill (and privilege)  of being an "Artful Asker".  I was moved by Douglas Lawson's article titled the same which defines "Philanthropy as the mystical mingling of a joyful giver, and artful asker and a grateful recipient'.

So -  tell your stories first.... but have your statistics to back them up