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Leading change: Building a resilient development office through succession planning
When high rates of employee turnover resist mitigation efforts, a new strategy is needed for overcoming the ill effects of poor employee retention. This paper aims to describe the efforts undertaken by Cambridge University Office of Development and Alumni Relations (Cambridge) to develop a succession plan for key positions. The steps they implemented form a framework that can help development offices increase their resilience and maintain equilibrium amidst the uncertainty and inconsistency of turnover. It provides insights into advancement offices' need for strategy, transparency and flexibility to thrive in an increasingly volatile job market.
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Alison Traub is Executive Director of Development and Alumni Relations at the University of Cambridge. She successfully led Collegiate Cambridge's fundraising campaign that concluded July 2022, raising £2.2bn. She joined Cambridge in 2013 from the University of Virginia, where she led its US$3bn campaign as Campaign Director and Associate Vice-President for Development. Prior to this, Alison was Director of Development for the Brady Urological Institute at Johns Hopkins University, where she oversaw an increase in giving from US$1m to US$11m annually and managed a US$25m six-year campaign that was completed two years ahead of schedule.
Ben Golding consults with many leading healthcare organisations, academic institutions and non-profit organisations on donor-centric development practices that drive transformational philanthropy. He passionately elevates organisations' mindsets toward philanthropy utilising his experience and the extensive research that Advancement Resources conducts. Ben enjoys sharing his insights with his peers and has been honoured to introduce Advancement Resources' breakthrough concepts at a number of conferences and events.
Lauren Laur is Vice President of Design at Advancement Resources, and she leverages broad experience in instructional design, writing and editing, project management and research to coordinate outcome-driven instructional materials for non-profit organisations across the US, UK, Canada and Australia. She enjoys applying her background in literary and textual analysis to identify common themes and industry best practices that can be learned and replicated to elevate philanthropy worldwide.