What’s “free” isn’t really “free”

Many professional associations and some fundraising consultancies have been offering free professional development during the current public health crisis. For that, we should all be grateful. There’s been a lot to learn about how to shape-shift to address this pandemic with ourndonors and funders. The community dialogue has been really useful to me.

But it’s not sustainable to offer free content in perpetuity. Which means we all have to face the music; associations and consultancies have to start charging for it, and we have to start paying for it, even though it’s virtual. It was a lost income stream, and it’s necessary for their long-term viability. We need to support them if we want them to survive this crazy time.

My AFP chapter, my GPA chapter, eventually have to look at their books – look hard – and make some difficult decisions. Maybe there will be cuts, some services will have to be dropped, and even then the financial picture will look much different at the end of the year than it started out the year.

But the year has played out quite differently for all of us, hasn’t it?

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