Pre-Conference ISM Workshop 2017


Wednesday, November 1
Session I: 9:00AM-12:00PM | Session II: 1:00-4:00PM

Session I: Performance Characteristics of Advancement Professionals

By ISM’s definition, advancement refers to the strategic process by which a school advances its mission through the integration of its admission, development, and marketing communications programs. Each of the three areas has particular performance characteristics your advancement professionals need to carry out the function with great effectiveness.

This workshop will identify the characteristics pertinent to each role, positioning your school to hire outstanding professionals; create a professional growth-focused culture; coach and mentor; and support your current staff in achieving their greatest effectiveness and impact.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Understand how to use essential expectations, duties, and responsibilities to hire and evaluate staff
  2. Understand how to use characteristics of professional excellence as a basis for professional growth and renewal
  3. Be able to coach and mentor to effectively evaluate and lead professional growth
  4. Gain the tools to create effective and accurate job descriptions that attract excellent, mission-appropriate candidates and build the capacity of your staff

Format: Interactive session, including case studies and role plays

Session II: A Real-Time Assessment of Your Development Operations

The success of your development efforts requires the capacity to establish data-informed objectives, measure your progress, and perform as a unified team. This session provides a teaching framework and assessment tool to evaluate your operations and develop a plan to build on strengths, address challenges, and take advantage of opportunities.

The ISM Development Assessment Tool is organized around two primary success predictors— consistent donor engagement and effective Development Office management.

We guide you in the real-time use of this tool to analyze the state of your operations, establish your baseline, and focus your priorities around the true difference-makers for your school. This comprehensive assessment serves both as a teaching document and as a set of metrics by which to examine your team’s performance on identifying, engaging, evaluating, soliciting, recognizing, and stewarding your donors in order to foster and sustain a strong culture of philanthropy. It also examines specific office management practices that are critical to high- performing operations, including database management, gift accounting, analysis and reporting, planning and goal-setting, budgeting, and professional growth and evaluation of your team members.

Use of this framework results in data-informed planning and unified operations that strengthen your team’s capacity and guide you in reporting to your School Head, Board of Trustees, and school community on your operations and the way you market your development efforts.

Learning Objectives:

1. Understand the characteristics most closely correlated with successful development efforts
2. Assess in real time all aspects of your operations, using a clear set of metrics to identify strengths and challenges
3. Set your priorities and develop a plan of action

Format: Interactive session, including case studies

*Please note that attending both will result in unique content/experiences in each session.

This workshop is open to: Heads of School, Trustees, Business Officers, Advancement/Development Directors, and Marketing and Communications Directors.

Workshop Cost: $225 (Members) | $325 (Non-Members)
Bundle the Pre-Conference ISM Workshop, Session I, with the Business Officers' Pre-Conference Workshop: $325 (Members) | $425 (Non-Members)

To register for one or both of the Pre-Conference Workshops ONLY, click here:

Register Here

If you plan to attend the Convention, you should register for one or both Pre-Conference Workshops as part of the Convention registration. Click here to go to Convention registration.


Paula A. Schwartz, EdD, IAP-L, ISM Senior Consultant
Dr. Paula Schwartz joined ISM in 2002 after nearly 20 years working with various education institutions to plan and execute their development, communications, and research programs. She leads the ISM Advancement Team, providing services in the areas of annual, capital, endowment, and major gift fundraising. She has earned the Leader (IAP-L) designation through ISM’s International Advancement Certification Program. Read more

Barbara Beachley, ISM Director of Advisory Services
Barbara joined ISM in 2011 after working in the field of education since 1996. She served as an ESL and adult literacy teacher at Boston University, MA; an upper school modern language teacher at the MacDuffie School, MA; and a language teacher and lead advisor at Collegiate School, VA. She also served as Academic Dean at Cape Henry Collegiate School, VA, where she oversaw curriculum and professional growth in grades PreK–12. Read more