Posts tagged ‘Assets’

Fraud is often associated with loss of assets, but the non-financial impact can be far more damaging particularly in the 3rd sector where trust is paramount.

In a previous post I wrote about indicators of fraud, in this post I would like to address the impact it can have on an organisation, with particular emphasis on the not-for-profit sector.

Breach of Trust

Morale and trust can be severly altered by the discovery of fraud.  In a charity environment where income and assets are donated rather than earned through commercial activity, reputation and trust in paramount to survival. 

Vulnerability

Charities are often considered to be more vulnerable, but are they?  In fact the incidence of fraud amoung the 3rd sector remains very low in comparison to commercial sectors.  In a survey conducted by The Fraud Advisory Panel, just 7% of respondents reported that their charitable organisations have been the victim of fraud within the previous two years.  In my opinion this incredibly low figure could be as a result of less fraud being detected or a culture that discourages whistleblowing, but never-the-less, 7% is remarkably low.

So why the perception?

  • Reliance on goodwill, generally being too trusting allows less ethical individuals to take advantage
  • Lack of supervision, particularly where the public are involved, for example during small fundraising events
  • Lower levels of management expertise or financial control
  • Less frequent or indepth training of staff and volunteers
  • Lower levels of remuneration

In my experience, many of these views are unfounded in most organisations, as the survey results confirm.

Financial Impact

Obviously the loss of assets is the easiest way to measure fraud, but have you considered the following?

  • The cost of management time dealing with the event and the resulting communications
  • The possible increase in insurance premiums, warranties etcetera
  • The cost of replacing the assets/cash
  • The loss of donations/sales resulting from the damage to goodwill
  • The cost of recruiting and training the staff/volunteers to replace those that have been removed due to their association with the event and those who have chosen to leave because of the emotional impact of the event.

Non-Financial Impact

Clearly the impact is difficult to quantify but should not be underestimated

  • Increased stress and negative affect on morale of internal and external stakeholders
  • Less favourable and/or negative messages in the Media
  • Loss of public trust, inherent goodwill and general interest in supporting the organisation
  • Lack of committment by volunteers and/or decline in numbers willing to volunteer
  • Exposure to further incidences of fraud as the organisation may be seen as vulnerable –  ‘an easy target’

I hope this information has provoked thought, in the next of this ‘fraud’ series, I intend to look at ways to reduce the risk of fraud occuring.

The information provided in this blog illustrates my opinions and experiences, it does not constitute advice and I do not accept responsibility for any actions taken or refrained from as a result of reading this post.

This is a guest post from Gary Johannes, an amazing networking colleague of mine, 4Networking Regional Leader for the Eastern Region, Bartercard representative, and the man leading the inspiring BRAVE challenge for children with spinal injuries.  Follow his training, fundraising and charismatic view of life www.twitter.com/garyjohannes


Because of the work I do, and the number of people I meet, one of the questions put to me on an almost weekly basis is this: “Networking doesn’t work, does it?”

biz cardAnd the simple answer? “Yes, actually, it does.” In fact, it also works for the majority of the hundreds of people I meet every month.

But, of course, some of the people I come across would give a resolutely negative answer to the same question.

When I find myself chatting someone who is disillusioned by networking, and firmly believes it simply doesn’t work for them and never will, I generally come to the same conclusion: they don’t ‘get’ networking. They’ve got a skewed view of how it works and what it’s for, and that’s letting them down.


Rule no. 1 – Be likeable. People relate to humans, not walking sales brochures

For me, making networking work for you starts with some basics that are applicable to any area of your life. So, I treat people with respect and I talk to them as people, not prospects. No one likes to find themselves cornered at a social event, being sold to as if they were in a car showroom. It’s a turn off. Instead, I’m friendly and I take an interest in the other person – sometimes what I do barely comes up.

Why? Because having a person like you is far more valuable than winning a business lead there and then.

Rule no. 2 – People are valuable. Nurture and protect your assets

If you’re an astute business person, you’ll realise that having lots of contacts in lots of industries doesn’t just give you more chance of winning referrals, it also makes you more valuable to your clients.

How? Well from time to time, your clients will ask you if you know a good wed developer / plumber / financial adviser. The more tuned in you are to the range of providers out here and the quality of their offerings, the more valuable you are to your client as a resource.

Rule no. 3 – Trust is everything. Stay honest

In networking circles, people applaud great work, they offer testimonials and they recommend great providers – it’s all part of the process. But keep letting customers down, and recommendations will quickly dry up.

Don’t promise what you can’t deliver on, don’t go into a meeting trying to be something you’re not, and never, ever lie to win a recommendation, because it will come back to haunt you, and you’ll miss out on more than you ever gained. Networking, after all, is all about trust.

Rule no. 4 – Commit to networking regularly to see the real benefits

You are very unlikely to start winning work at your first, second or even third meeting. People need to meet, know, like and trust you (to steal a 4Networking phrase). Turn up once a year, and how can you possibly expect to build relationships? Turn up once a fortnight, and people will recognise you and, more importantly, remember your name when it counts.

And finally…Quick tips for networking

So to close, a round up of some of the key things to remember as you walk into a your first networking event.

  • Never go looking for sales.
  • Get to know people, not just what they sell.
  • Don’t discount people if they cant buy from you (they may be best mates with someone who can).
  • Sell yourself, not your business. Be likeable, warm and approachable.
  • The more you give the more you receive, so offer advice and support wherever you can.
  • Support others. If a fellow networker does a great job for you, let others know.
  • Enjoy yourself. Approach it like a chore and you won’t stick it out for long enough to reap the benefits.


With sincere thanks to Emily Cagle Communications for allowing me to reproduce Gary’s post.

Simon Jordan says “social media and offline networking is an incredible way to grow your business

The information provided in this blog illustrates my opinions and experiences, it does not constitute advice and I do not accept responsibility for any actions taken or refrained from as a result of reading this post