Organizational Underwear

Yippie Skippy! My nonprofit marketing and fundraising hero Katya Andresen features this blog post in her 4/30/2013 Advice Carnival. Please visit and share the link. For related posts, filter for the category “On-the-Job Lessons.” Blessings! Sue

When asked to create a unit brochure or report on the latest reorganization or when expected to communicate the inner workings of the central office, I find it helpful to note that the organization of an organization–its unit structure, its regional geography, its reporting hierarchy, its carefully crafted strategic plan–provides the foundation for getting things done. Another word for foundation is underwear, and while the support and structure of underwear is important, it’s best not to show your underwear in public.

Communicating about the organization of the organization to insiders answers their who-what-when-where-how questions. Communicating about the organization of the organization to outsiders–AKA constituents, clients, volunteers, donors–does little to answer their questions: So what? Why should I care? How do I get what I need? What difference do you make?

Organization = Foundation = Underwear. Keep it on the inside.

Sue Edison-Swift  9/29/2011

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4 Responses to Organizational Underwear

  1. Terri Speirs says:

    Excellent, Sue. Keep it coming.

  2. Kathleen West says:

    Organizational Underwear–great posting! I sure do miss you here; so many new systems–ECIS, etc. Thank God, Paul is in charge of the organizational underwear for the ELCA Resource Catalog or we’d ALL be up the creek…………………Kathleen

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