President's Perspective Blog

Mike’s Monday Message: Leadership For All Career Levels

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What does it mean to be a great leader? Being in a senior position doesn’t automatically make you a great leader, just like being new to the profession doesn’t disqualify you from having leadership abilities. Leadership is a skill that must be learned, practiced, and applied to your work and your relationships, whatever your current role. 

Cultivating your leadership abilities is just as important as developing your fundraising skills, which is why AFP is expanding our leadership education this year, to provide valuable training for all career levels. 

Early Career: The Leadership Institute 

Earlier this year, AFP launched a new program, the AFP Leadership Institute, designed specifically for those with 5-15 years of experience in the fundraising field. Applications are now open for the next cohort of this immersive learning experience, which will be meeting Sunday, November 5 to Friday, November 10, 2023, in Arlington, VA. Because of the small group setting, and 1-on-1 coaching sessions, this is a great opportunity for emerging leaders interested in developing specific leadership skills. The deadline to apply is July 31. 

Early to Mid-Career: AFP LEAD

Last October over 500 fundraisers gathered in Houston for the largest AFP LEAD to date. I can only imagine this year will be bigger and better than ever… Our annual leadership conference AFP LEAD 2023 is back, October 19-21 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania! 

LEAD consists of two full days of CFRE credit-eligible sessions, covering topics such as strategic planning, becoming an authentic leader, maximizing employee engagement, and applying IDEA to your leadership work. 

Whether you're an emerging leader or an established professional looking to brush up on the latest trends in nonprofit leadership, AFP LEAD is a must-attend event.

You can save $200 when you register by July 14, so make sure you register this week!

Executive-Level Career: AFP CATALYST

In the days immediately following AFP LEAD, October 22-23, AFP CATALYST: The Sector Leadership Forum, will gather a small group of executive-level nonprofit fundraising leaders interested in influencing the future of the profession. AFP LEAD will end on October 21 and AFP CATALYST will commence - all in Philadelphia. We’ll spend this time having meaningful discussions on the best way to tackle sector-wide issues. Register and learn more here! 

I look forward to hopefully seeing you at one of these events! 

As always, please feel free to reach out to me with any questions or concerns. You can reach me via email at or on Twitter at @AFPMikeGeiger

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Mike Geiger, MBA, CPA

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