Office of Advancement
Office of Advancement

ALTogether Now

Vol. 7 - July 15, 2019

Members of the Office of Advancement Leadership Team

Deceptively Quiet

Karen Bertrand, VP (Advancement)

Summer is arguably one of the quieter times of our fiscal year. Don’t be fooled by the change of pace, however. There is a lot happening throughout the summer that will shape our future.

This edition of ALTogether Now includes information on possibilities for the future of our sector in Canada, activities to help shape the next five-year Strategic Plan for Queen’s Advancement, and requests for your time and attention in September. Teams are finalizing their annual plans for 2019-20, our budget submission for 2020-21 – 2022-23 is due at the end of July, and tasks teams are working throughout the summer to develop the culture of philanthropy with the Queen’s Board of Trustees and consider the future of University Council. So lots to do, but as they say, the future is bright!

I hope that everyone has an opportunity to take advantage of the change of pace this summer for some much deserved time away from the office. For those who remain at work, ALT members have coordinated vacation time so there are at least two ALT members available throughout July and August to assist if needed. Please don’t hesitate to call upon us, and take full advantage of your time off when you are away. Fall will be here soon enough.

Strengthening Our Sector

The Canadian Senate established the Special Senate Committee on the Charitable Sector in January 2018. Its purpose was to examine the impact of federal and provincial laws and policies governing charities, nonprofit organizations, foundations, and other similar groups, and to examine the impact of the voluntary sector in Canada. If you have not done so already, consider reviewing the committee report just released in June — or at least the Executive Summary.

For your convenience the report is available at

Strategic Planning Update

Efforts to develop the next strategic plan for the Office of Advancement have now begun in earnest. As you may recall, Nicholas Offord and Avon MacFarlane from Offord Group have been hired as the independent consultants tasked with oversight of the Strategic Planning process. Nicholas and Avon were on campus for initial project meetings with ALT on June 18.

We will now move to broader consultations. Beginning at the end of July, approximately 60 interviews will be held with a variety of both internal and external stakeholders. Thank you to everyone who provided input into who should be included in those interviews. As you would expect, we had more nominations for interviews than time available, so the task of confirming who would be included was not easy. I am nevertheless pleased to report that we have invited 26 Queen’s employees representing all units within the Office of Advancement, as well as campus partners to participate in these interviews. We have also finalized a list of 40+ distinct meetings with external stakeholders that include graduates from all faculties, 27 females and 30 males, alumni leaders, donors (including bequest donors) and prospects, with representation from different ages and backgrounds.

Planning is underway for an external online constituency survey as well. Beginning later this summer we will survey up to 5,000 additional individuals to test perceptions of Queen’s, inclination to give, capacity, priority interests, and issues and concerns.

A capacity analysis of our pipeline, and benchmarking and trends research, will also be completed in the coming months.

We look forward to sharing more information with the full team at our all-staff meeting Sept. 26 .

Planning for September

Fall is always busy for advancement professionals. So you may have noticed several all-staff meetings already in your schedule for September. Allow us to take this opportunity to explain the purpose of these meetings.

Sept. 4 is a regular quarterly all-staff meeting. Building on the 4+2 strategic objectives for 2019-20 that were unveiled at our March staff meeting, ALT members will present the plans in their portfolios for this fiscal year. You will also have an opportunity to learn more about equity, diversity, and inclusion efforts in the Office of Advancement. Please review the Meeting Agenda already posted on Outlook in the Sept. 4 meeting for more details.

The 2019 EAB onsite training will be held Sept. 24 as part of our continuing commitment to professional development. This onsite will focus on digital strategy, as per the results of an all-staff survey in June.

Offord Group will host an all-staff meeting on our Strategic Planning process Sept. 26. More information will follow about the agenda for this meeting in the coming weeks.

ALT respects the time commitment being requested. We nevertheless hope you agree the subject matter of each of these meetings is important for all staff to attend, and that you will be able to plan your September schedule accordingly with this advance notice.