So far -- dollars keep rolling in -- we will hit our million dollar goal within the time frame we set for ourselves -- if not sooner. Our front office staff has had to increase by having not one, but two people manning the phones from 7am til late at night on the weekdays. Weekends run into weekends -- you barely remember that it is Friday -- if it was not for the calendar that reminds you of the coming NH primary.
It is funny -- when I first came here -- the organization was relatively small -- there was the Cyber Organizer, an Online Media/Email person, a Web Content Manager and a person handling a deluge of emails with an Outlook client. The team had just launched a new version of the website (personally opinion, I was not a big fan of it) and we were dealing with end of quarter email campaign trying to raise money with a gimmick of Hammer Bush with a cute Flash piece. Emails and database integration was an interesting hiodge-podge, and the website management consisted of handling emergency requests and making sure we were abreast of content that was never purposed for the web.
What a different a few months makes. The team has grown to handle technology issues, a person who was a fan of Kerry happened to be *very interested* in revising our site -- and created a mock-up when he was sick over the course of six days which we then spent the time implementing it, we expanded our customer service team with a kick-a** eCRM solution that has made responding to emails a breeze, we expanded our community efforts with a blog update to handle the trolls, installed a forum (all volunteer driven) and even expanded our MeetUp connections with another "group communication platform" tool. (G-d, always wanted to find a sentence to use that in...). The fundraising system/engine has been upgraded, giving individual supporters ways to show their support and to get donors to donate on their behalf has been amazing, and we have triple redundancies when things get really heavy. Our email communications have been upgraded -- and we coordinate with the other communication channels much more effectively, by improving our processes and communications.
Funny thing -- it was JK's decision to shake up the campaign that had the biggest impact on the overall organization -- things have improved with Mary Beth at the helm -- she deserves a lot of credit for the energy and team-building she brought. One of the hidden team members is David Morehouse, a plumber in a former life, David and his team have done wonders for the campaign in ways I would never expect. Not to discount our former team, but this group has been exceptional.
And, with JK on message, the site providing ease of use, and the systems percolating -- the challenge is the growth and how to push the true vision -- connecting with the the people outside the beltway. Be part of the great change that is occurring in the cyberspace community and provide the connection that needs to be there. The Dean Team and Joe Trippi have done a fabulous job in connecting with the world -- giving distributed power to the rest of the world -- whether a volunteer coordinator in Wichita, Kansas or a blogger in the blogosphere -- people are connected and are involved. This needs to be directed and retained -- something that, if we are successful, I will work to have happen as much as possible.
But, with all good things -- life can intrude upon the dream. I look forward to see what happens next.