“How do we compare to other institutions like us?”
“How are other institutions responding to this situation?”
“Have you tried ChatGPT to create the letter?”
Regardless of the work or metrics, it seems we are being encouraged from all sides to become more identical, more indistinct, less original, and less inspired.
And, in an increasingly noisy and distraction-filled world, that doesn’t seem like the smartest strategy if our goal is to engage and delight more donors and friends.
Instead of comparing our results to those of other institutions, we become better when we focus on comparing our results to our own history and trends.
Instead of asking how other institutions are responding, we communicate more effectively when we ask how our values should drive our response.
Instead of looking at artificial intelligence as a creative short-cut, we become more compelling when we ask ChatGPT to analyze our work and suggest ways to make it more succinct, more fascinating, or more inviting.
Looking outside of ourselves for comparison or help can be a strategy that makes us better.
But, if we aren’t, first, comparing ourselves against our own history and if we aren’t using our own values and aspirations as the muse for our content and strategies, we are betraying the distinctive, personalized magic that allows for deep human bonding.
We can either be like everyone else. Or we can be the very best version of ourselves.
Each day it’s our choice.