Week Eight: Hut, Hut, Pike!

It was back to Seattle this week for another two day visit. This time, it was colder and darker, but I did have the chance to venture to Pike Place Market, albeit at night. Look!

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My colleague Alison joined me for this trip, so we ventured out together in the evenings. We enjoyed a glass of wine at a great little wine and coffee bar (they put those two together in Seattle, I guess) called Café Fonte. I’m not a wine expert, but our sommelier told us that the Pacific Northwest is basically a cooler and wetter version of the Mediterranean, which means amazing grapes and therefore amazing wines. We tried a Pinot Noir called Trisaetum. If you see it in your local wine store, I’d encourage you to buy a bottle. It was really good!

Aside from another trip to Seattle in the dark, this week was all about catching up. Catching up is my nice way of referring to all the unsexy aspects of consulting. This is what we do when we’re in the office, or on a plane, or any other time we’re awake when we aren’t onsite with a client. This is also the post I’ll point any of my family members to the next time they ask me what a typical week looks like for me. I’ve organized the list by subject area to make it a bit more understandable.

A week in the life of Bond:

Analytics:
One of the fun and complicated parts of my job is that it involves all parts of prospect development, which includes analytics. At BWF, we have a whole arm of our practice devoted to analytics called DonorCast (click here to learn more). The great thing about analytics is that it does a lot of the base prospecting work for an organization. Without getting into too much detail, analytics helps guide you towards the people in your database who are more likely to support your organization. Along those lines, this week I:
-Created a survey regarding the build-out of an analytics function at one client organization
-Read files related to an upcoming client visit and ran through a presentation of their predictive modeling results

I didn’t exactly do a great job of explaining what analytics is, but if you want to learn more, check out the DonorCast site or head over to Wikipedia for a general overview.

Nonprospect Research:
I read lots of files so I can get up to speed on what is currently happening with a particular client- what did the proposal look like, what materials have they sent us, what have we sent them, etc. Once I review all the files I can do fun things like:
-Compile benchmarking metrics so an organization can demonstrate improvement from FY14 over FY13
-Remote desktop into the test environment of an organization’s database to grab screenshots that might make their way into an updated policy/procedure manual

Okay, so that second one will only be fun for a couple of you, and I commend you both. For most of the rest of us, it’s a laborious task, which is probably why clients ask us to help out. 🙂

Conference Planning:
As I mentioned in a previous blog, it looks like a busy year of presentations for me! Related to that, this week I:
-Put together slides for my upcoming CASE V session. My colleague, Kimberly Priebe, and I are deep in the planning phase for this session and I’m very excited!
-Confirmed my participation as faculty at the CASE Development Researchers conference in Baltimore in March. This conference is in the early stages of preparation, but you can continue to find out more information here or check on twitter under #casedevr. I am so excited about this- this exact conference was the first one I ever attended years ago as a new researcher, so it is near and dear to my heart.

That’s it for this week- Have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday!

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