Reflections on Smart Hire Webinar

Thoughts from our webinar on how to hire + retain strong staff

Last Wednesday, I had the honor of teaching AFP Golden Gate members how to make a smart hire and how to retain a strong team. I founded Monsoon Leadership after years of my fundraising peers encouraging me to teach my management super skills. 

Even when our field has been experiencing historic turnover, my teams remained sticky. And, when my orgs were going through tumultuous change, I sheltered my team from the fallout and kept us focused on our goals. Now, I’m spilling all of my secrets through webinars like the one I did last week.

I appreciated the enthusiasm in the room and the many thoughtful questions on the intricacies of hiring processes. There is a real hunger for learning how to become an expert hiring manager!

Thoughts on how to make a smart hire…

Interesting takeaways from participants’ responses during the webinar:

  • The hardest part about hiring new staff: finding qualified candidates, making the right offer, and having clear expectations. 
  • What makes someone an expert hiring manager? Top two answers were communication and transparency (couldn’t agree more!)
  • Participants are ready to put into action: supporting new hires for first 90 days with on-boarding and coaching.
  • The hardest part about staff retention: #1 answer was workload, and #2 was time (yup!)
  • The retention tips that surprised people the most: 99% of tasks are not urgent and pull back on edits.
  • Making a smart hire is a learned skill! 
  • There are lots of caring managers out there who want to do a better job hiring and support their staff (yay!)

I love connecting with other managers who are committed to creating healthy workplaces. Your team culture starts with transparent and honest hiring practices, and staff retention begins with having a clear and compelling job description. Each step along the way builds trust with your new staff members.

One participant mentioned that she was going to incorporate these tips into her current active hiring process! I’m thrilled that these hiring and retention skills are being put into action. 

Thank you to the participant who dropped this thoughtful comment about the webinar, “Very practical recommendations! Also really appreciated the white supremacy culture call outs.”

Interested in this webinar? Contact me to schedule a webinar or in-person training for your AFP Chapter or individual nonprofit. I’m so excited to bring this knowledge to more nonprofit managers. 

Together, we can revolutionize how we work.


Shannon Bowen, Founder + CEO of Monsoon Leadership is a career advancement coach, job search expert, salary whisperer, nonprofit executive, and a lifelong straight-talker. She's dedicated to helping nonprofit professionals land their dream job and dream salary!


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