Philly Phundraising Phollies
I didn't hear back from him for a couple of days, so I called. "Did you get the stuff?" I asked.
"I did, and I passed it around to my staff."
"They asked if any of these mailing worked, and I told them that they did."
"'Well they don't work for us,' they told me."
That was June 2004.
I never heard from them again. They still have my samples and my books.
The Academy of Natural Sciences may be "old Philadelphia," but it sure ain't a class operation.
This past Dec. 4, 2005, Patricia Horn of The Philadelphia Inquirer wrote a long article detailing what has befallen the Academy of Natural Sciences since our meeting at the Union League:
- The development director I met with was fired after seven months on the job.
- His telling me that the museum sometimes broke even was B.S. From 1993 to the present, the institution has been running a $700,000 per annum deficit on its $15 million a year operating budget.
- So many staff people have been fired that the collection of 25 million specimens of dinosaur bones, fish, birds, plants and animals is in serious jeopardy.
- A distinct possibility exists that one of the world's greatest repositories of scientific books, specimens and artifacts will go down the tubes through neglect and mismanagement by elitists with advanced scientific degrees who haven't a clue how to run a business.
Takeaway Points to Consider
- Community service is a good thing to do.
- What is probably NOT a good thing to do is give away for free what people pay you to do.
- It is hard enough persuading paying clients that you are not a threat and that your only interest is to do a good job and help them look good in the process.