Asking the right questions…

Our South Copeland Development Officer, Beresford Moyle Rosser, gives us an update on what’s he’s been up to recently, and why it’s important to ask the right questions to understand how to best help the organisations he supports:

I am a huge fan of Podcasts.

Listening to the views of others as I am driving from one appointment to the other in this beautiful part of Cumberland is always a delight. I recently stumbled on Travel Diaries by Holly Rubenstein which has been a joy to hear. She has divided each episode into different chapters and takes the person being interviewed from their earliest travel memories through various stages of life until finally their upmost best travel destination of all time is reached. Absolutely fascinating. And you can learn a lot about life, culture, different perspectives and even food!

It got me thinking about the work I am involved in and the importance of asking the right questions to ascertain what is needed for a particular project. I like to delve into the background of an issue with my customers to fully understand WHY volunteers are needed or a grant or perhaps more Trustees to join the team. WHAT impact will that have on the Project and WHERE can the Project be taken as a result.

But, as we all know, it is not just about asking open questions but also listening which is vital and that is an art in itself. To ACTIVELY listen to someone, taking note of their expression, how they articulate their answers and looking at them as they speak can be very revealing as they convey their truth.

We recently gave an opportunity for different organisations to get together at Millom’s Network Centre to share their experiences and learn from each other over a cup of coffee and it was fascinating to listen to the participants share their experiences and trials and how they overcome their problems. Another social network event is being planned for after the summer break in the Autumn so look out for a date and venue!

Common issues were finding and recruiting trustees, retaining volunteers and becoming more financially sustainable. These important issues will feature prominently in my work as my Project here in South Copeland comes to the end of its first year and begins its second year in the community it serves.

And for those who are escaping to warmer climates this Summer, write your own travel diaries colourfully!

Have a wonderful Summer!