Unreasonable Intentionality

May 24, 2023

I read a book a long time ago by Andy Stanley called Visioneering.  I’ve purchased many copies of it through the years and kept giving them away.  I don’t even think I still have a copy of my own. It’s fine though, the message still resonates deep within me. It’s an instruction guide on how to fully execute a vision. Sounds easy enough.  It’s not.

Andy Stanley Quote: “Dreamers dream about things being different ...

That’s why Left Brain Marketing Methods and Right Brain Marketing Moxie are vital.  You need both. As Steinbeck wrote “The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.” This is why strategic plans gather dust in binders on shelves across the nation, the world even. It’s also why Covey wrote The Four Disciplines of Execution. Even the best leaders realize that ideas are a dime a dozen. Trust me, I’ve got file folders filled with ideas I’ve had over the years that simply weren’t ready to be born. Some of them are bad. Some of them were implemented by other people because I’d abandoned them for far too long, ala Big Magic. Some of them I gave away because someone else needed one and I had plenty to spare. And some of them I enjoyed executing myself.

But what I know for sure is that without a solid left brain plan on how to execute any genius idea, it likely won’t happen. Remember that scene in Alice in Wonderland when Alice asks the Cheshire Cat which road to take. Slyly he says, “Well, where are you going?” It was there that Lewis Carroll gave the Cheshire Cat a beautiful brush in which to paint this picture about visioneering when he said, “If you don't know where you want to go, then it doesn't matter which path you take.”

Will Guidara’s book Unreasonable Hospitality speaks to this concept when he mentions a quote many of us have heard before, “People will forget what you do; they’ll forget what you said. But they’ll never forget how you made them feel.”  You’ve experienced this yourself, I’m sure. You know the people and the places that made you feel all the feelings. Maybe you’ve even been the person who made someone feel oh-so special and that’s meaningful, too. Hospitality is like generosity; they are both inspiring whether offer it or receive it.

That’s what unreasonable hospitality is all about—getting people, your donors and your recipients, to remember how you made them feel. So much so, that they'll want to tell others. Guidara would say that it’s not just an opportunity, but our responsibility, to put more of that kind of magic into the world.

It was magic...quote from Sleepless in Seattle by @teelduo | Sleepless ...

So, how in the heck to you do that? How about with some unreasonable intentionality?  It’s not enough to say you want you donors to feel so good about your mission that they become relentless fundraisers for you.  Sure, I love that idea!  It’s filled with right brain moxie. But right brain moxie is worth zilch without an intentional left brain plan of execution.

Literally, every minute of your day and every dollar in your budget should be spent getting you toward your desired result. That’s intentionality. If the Cheshire Cat asks where you’re going, you should know. In fact, your entire team should know. That means staff and Board—everyone in the same boat, rowing in the same direction.

New Zealand Sisters GIF by Olympic Channel

Guidara suggests doing this through what he calls Enlighted Hospitality.  Now this concept might surprise you because most organizations, for-profit or non-profit,
simply aren’t doing it.

Enlighted Hospitality means putting the people who work for you first. Boom!  That’s a mic drop moment right there! This means your donors aren’t first. This means your clients or grant recipients aren’t first. This means your Board isn’t even first. Crazy, I know. It seems backwards, doesn’t it. At first blush, you’d think that putting your staff first means the rest of the people you serve will suffer. But that math doesn’t math.

Calculating Figure It Out GIF

In fact, wildly investing in your people, significantly pouring into their personal and professional development, has a boomerang effect on those you serve. Every ounce of what you put into your people will ricochet right back to your customers. Every. Single. Ounce.

Your right brain lesson today, friend, is that you must have some clever marketing moxie in order for those you serve to remember how you made them feel. It’s a bit of marketing magic and you know it when you see it or feel it.

And your left brain lesson today is where you find that magic. It can be found in the hearts and minds of the people who work for and with your organization. Pour into them and they will pour into your mission. That’s how the glass remains half full—it’s all that pouring.

Aligned Design Studio happy happiness positive glass GIF

It’s the super-sized combo of marketing magic created by the very people you intentionally invest in the most. That’s how you engineer a vision. That’s visioneering.

 All My Best,

[email protected]
dawn brown creative, llc. 


P.S. Fundraising is hard, even though you make it look
oh-so easy! ♥

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