Category Archive: New Blog

  1. Top Tips For Communications On A Budget

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    It can be difficult making budgets stretch no matter what kind of business you run, but charities in particular are often stretched incredibly thin and more often than not, it’s the marketing and PR departments that find themselves running on fumes.


  2. Fundraising In The Digital Age: 7 Top Tip

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    Charity fundraising has been done for years, but the way in which it is carried out has certainly evolved over the years – and now, thanks to digital innovation, it’s essential that charities of all shapes and sizes are making the most of the technology available to them.


  3. “There’s no point advertising yet – no one’s looking for jobs in the run up to Christmas”

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    That’s true, but don’t start the great seasonal tidy up just yet. Candidates do have other things on their minds but they aren’t looking because they think you aren’t recruiting!

    However, it’s the most wonderful time of the year to work with The Right Ethos. He would say that wouldn’t he, I hear you say.  But let me explain why. Advertising doesn’t work at this time of the year (although you’ve probably also heard recruitment advertising doesn’t work anymore either and there’s also an argument for that)

    But, candidates are keen to hear about jobs and we contact them right up to a few days before Christmas. They pick up their phones or meet with us because they’re keen to advance their career. If you think about it, you would too if you were about to find out about a great job from an agency which always gets it right for you.

    Sourcing candidates is particularly good for us at this time of year as we cream off the best candidates before the mad rush of adverts which inevitably hit the job boards in January.

    We have the largest database in the UK of external affairs, communications and campaigns staff. That, together with our extensive networks built through my 24 years employed in External Affairs for organisations including Shelter, Amnesty International and Save the Children allows us to identify and contact candidates quickly and efficiently, whether they’re actively looking at job adverts or not.

    We have a range of successful recruitment methods and prices, including a reduced service at only 7.5% of salary, and collaborative working which comes with a 12 month guarantee on our candidates.

    If you want to talk about how we can help, please give me a call 07726 562716 or drop me an email –

  4. Senegal 15

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    I recently helped to run an advocacy workshop on migration in Dakar, Senegal. It was a great event with representatives from African, European and Middle Eastern countries.

    Unlike many events that I’ve been involved in running advocacy training this event seemed really special because the vast majority had little or no prior experience of advocacy. So therefore the initial focus was a lot about de-mystifying the concept of advocacy.

    This involved trying simply to define advocacy in terms of problem, solution, target and then seeking to influence that target. We then introduced some basic advocacy tools such as the influence tree and the theory of change, and then we supported delegates to begin to develop their own country specific advocacy strategy.

    I was really struck by a woman from one North African country, who said to me that all of these ideas had been in her head and that she had wanted to do things in the past, but a framework approach to advocacy had helped structure her thinking to move things forward.

    As these advocacy strategies began to develop, a colleague came up to me concerned about the development of one particular country specific advocacy strategy. This country’s representatives were focusing on the need to develop a migrant reception centre, and my colleague was concerned that this was not an appropriate response to the advocacy question.

    I was interested nonetheless that this was their initial humanitarian concern and their preferred response to this particular crisis. I suggested that this was an appropriate response, but having developed a reception centre and having begun to provide support in the reception centre that such an operational service could then provide the essential ingredients and evidence for advocacy on this issue.

    So that a theory of change could initially include their aspirations to get support for a reception centre and then to begin to run a reception centre, but I would then like to think that the theory of change would include the opportunities for advocacy based on the operational experience of running that reception centre.

    I am continually interested at the overlap and interplay between delivering direct operational services and the need for advocacy. I often talk about them being two sides of the same coin. This is hardly a unique insight, but it is really important to see them as being and having a very close relationship. At the Red Cross we talk about our preferred instinct to respond to an operational crisis is to get directly involved and to deliver direct humanitarian support; however when those services alone are not enough to deal with the problem that is when we will advocate and push for policy and practice change.

    I was really interested to see at such an advocacy workshop on migration how many people’s understandable first preference was to deliver direct services to help people in crisis; however the challenge has to be that very often direct services are not enough to deal with the problem, certainly when they are as big as the current global migration issue, and that is why advocacy campaigning is so, so important.

  5. Great question

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    I was asked a great question the other day: who needs to know about the impact of your advocacy campaigns?

    It stopped me in my tracks, and did give me food for thought. When I started my campaigning work at Oxfam, I remember being keen for public recognition of the role that Oxfam was playing in any campaign. I was involved in the campaign to abolish supermarket vouchers for asylum seekers almost 15 years ago now, and while it was a successful campaign involving many organisations, I still wanted some public recognition along side others of the role that Oxfam was playing.

    I wasn’t that obsessed by the need for profile, but I did want some degree of external recognition for Oxfam. Although I remember some of my colleagues wanting more profile for the organisation. I will never forget the degree of concern there was when I arranged a press conference on the issue, which included the British Medical Association and the Transport and General Workers’ Union – but without Oxfam. I do think that there will be stages of a campaign where you will make judgments that your organisation is not needed. But not withstanding that point, I still wanted recognition for Oxfam.

    Now at the Red Cross, I am interested to observe how, with the benefit of age perhaps, I have changed my thinking. We are seeking to influence government policy on the section 4 azure payment card for asylum seekers – a sad carry-over from the former vouchers scheme.

    I now find myself less concerned about public recognition of the role played by my organisation. My increasing focus is on the humanitarian suffering caused by this payment card and pushing for a return to cash payments for this group of people.

    Yet I do realise that there are important audiences from whom I do still want some recognition for the role of the Red Cross. Chief amongst that audience are our staff and volunteers – and indeed our wider supporter base. I would also be keen for the key Parliamentarians to know about our work to help us build credibility for future engagement.

    The information that I would like to convey is less about our impact but more about our progress with our theory of change. By this piece of jargon I basically mean telling the story of the campaign. The more I do this work the more I see successful campaigning is about being able to tell the story of your campaign. Such a story will include both the past and the future.

    So I hope to convey to my key audience the journey that we have covered to date and then the future direction we plan for our campaign. And with any such story there will be breakthroughs and set-backs – the campaign story needs to include both but always with a focus on the new future direction.

    For me now in my campaigning, recognition is less important, but the significance of telling the campaign story is even more needed that ever. Do you involve story telling in your campaigning?