Phone calls from charities after you've donated by text message

(145 Posts)
CruCru Wed 08-May-13 21:52:41

I have recently donated to some charities by text message (super convenient and I don't have to talk to a person). However, the salespeople charity donation people keep ringing me to try to get me to donate more. It puts me off donating. AIBU? Today I had four missed calls on my mobile and when I called them back, it was a recorded message from a charity.

RussiansOnTheSpree Thu 09-May-13 10:38:10

Eccentrica - they really aren't overpaid. You may be underpaid (or maybe not, you didn't say what your Phd is in or what you do) but the sort of jobs you linked to were not offering even the going rate for that sort of job.

I think that many people have no idea what running a large multi-million pound organisation involves. Fair enough, that's not surprising - but if you think about it for a moment, surely you should appreciate that, if you were a donator to a charity, you'd want them to make the best possible use of your money to further the aims of the charity. Part of that is having really good people to run the thing.

Binkybix Thu 09-May-13 10:53:44

When I worked in a charity there seemed to be some jobs that had a 'fair' amount of remuneration for the level of responsibility and some quite senior ones that did seem overpaid. Like most places really!

it seemed in general that people in the charity were paid a bit more highly than, say, the public sector in the 'medium' range and were of slightly lower calibre. Just my experience from one part of one charity obviously.

eccentrica Thu 09-May-13 11:47:42

Russians "I think that many people have no idea what running a large multi-million pound organisation involves. Fair enough, that's not surprising - but if you think about it for a moment, surely you should appreciate that, if you were a donator to a charity, you'd want them to make the best possible use of your money to further the aims of the charity. Part of that is having really good people to run the thing."

I have a pretty good idea of what it involves, having worked with several large organisations. There is an awful lot of gravy train along with the responsibilities. Conferences, dinners, free travel, health insurance, etc. etc. etc. I find it quite patronising for you to say that by criticising this set-up, I must "have no idea what running a large organisation involves" and that (by implication) I haven't "thought about it for a moment".

"if you were a donator to a charity" er, I AM a donator to charities. And I don't believe that the salaries & benefits paid to their executives is making the best possible use of money. That's what I, and several other people on here, are saying. There's no "if" about it. We aren't too naive, or stupid, or idealistic, to think that it's essential for people to be paid in the top 1% of earners in the country off the back of donations made in good faith by people getting by on far, far less.

eccentrica Thu 09-May-13 11:49:12

Also, in what conceivable universe is "Up to £120k plus benefits" below "the going rate" for any job?

Sunnywithshowers Thu 09-May-13 11:53:15

Charities have overheads because they need good admin systems in order to do their charitable work effectively. If their back office systems are shit, they'll balls up gift aid and they won't be able to make sure that the money is being used effectively. They have to invest in fundraising to get money in - it works. And gives them more money to spend on the cause.

I'm not defending the NSPCC, they're big enough to look after themselves. But it's simplistic to imagine that charities which do make a difference to peoples' lives can run on volunteers only, or pay their staff fuck all. Like businesses (with which they compete, whether we like it or not) they need the best people for the job.

I was well paid as a fundraiser. That's because I'm good at what I did and take my job seriously.

eccentrica Thu 09-May-13 11:56:10

sunnywithshowers Nurses are on the whole good at what they do and take their job seriously. They however get paid fuck all, because there isn't enough money in the health sector to go round (apparently, though the people at the top seem to do OK again - funny that). They are meant to do it for the love of it, and accept very low wages for an extremely hard and thoroughly altruistic job. Funny how the same doesn't apply to people working for charities.

eccentrica Thu 09-May-13 12:01:22

Russians Nothing to do with me being underpaid or not, I'm doing OK if you look at the country as a whole. Anyone who talks about 80k+ jobs as being the only alternative to 'peanuts' clearly lives in a different world from the rest of us. We are the ones giving away our hard-earned cash and then being harassed by charities to give more, while the people at the top somehow get a six-figure salary out of it.

RussiansOnTheSpree Thu 09-May-13 12:08:28

The job you linked to was 60K-80K. Or at least, that was the top of the list when I followed the link, I think they rotate them round on some of these job sites. £120 would not be overpaid for a chief exec, it would be good money for many exec jobs though so I can see why you would baulk at that. But for a chief exec? £120K is not top dollar, nowhere close. If chief execs of multi million pound charities using OUR money to do things we believe should be done aren't in the top 1% of important jobs then really, who is?

And I'm sorry but if you don't see that some (not all, not even most) charities really are essentially Very Big Businesses, just devoted to doing good stuff rather than making money, then you haven't stopped to think about it. Very Big Businesses need particular types of people to run them. If you had worked with businesses on the scale of the largest charities you would appreciate this. Not all charities pay their chief execs £120K (the vast vast majority of them don't) but those that do, need to, in order to get the right leadership. Otherwise the people giving the donations might be wasting their money. This article might provide some interesting reading:

http://www.jobsite.co.uk/worklife/pay-survey-throws-spotlight-charity-ceo-salaries-11237/

eccentrica Thu 09-May-13 12:17:43

"If chief execs of multi million pound charities using OUR money to do things we believe should be done aren't in the top 1% of important jobs then really, who is?"

Bus drivers. Train drivers. Nurses. Teachers. Doctors. Surgeons. Social workers. Duty solicitors. Police officers. Teaching assistants. Engineers. Plumbers. Electricians. Firefighters. Paramedics. Ultrasound engineers. Radiologists. Cooks. Pharmacists. Security guards. Lifeguards. Coastguards. Seamstresses. Farmers. Fishermen. Butchers. And so on. People who actually do stuff that matters, without which our society would fall apart. People who don't cream off massive profits for them to live the high life.

I am not going to break professional confidentiality, but suffice to say I have worked with two or three of the largest charities in the UK so your "oh you just don't understand how terribly clever and unique these people are so we must pay them a lot of money" argument really doesn't work, no matter how many times you repeat it.

I linked to a whole category of jobs, not a single one. Sorry you didn't look past the first one. Here is the one for 120k plus excellent benefits.

jobs.guardian.co.uk/job/4634145/director-general/

Please could you explain why if the person who gets that job is motivated by wanting to help the good cause, rather than by becoming massively rich, they won't immediately ask for a 50% cut in salary?

RussiansOnTheSpree Thu 09-May-13 12:34:50

I happen to think many charities do 'stuff that matters, without which our society would fall apart' (except of course some of our charities are doing stuff without which the world would fall apart). You clearly feel differently.

And FWIW I think your list of people who do 'stuff that matters' is in many cases laughable. Butchers? Really?

The job you linked to isn't a charity job, it's a trade association job. Sorry you couldn't understand the job spec. It may or may not be worth the package on offer but that's irrelevant to this thread.

RussiansOnTheSpree Thu 09-May-13 12:37:41

Anyway, Eccentrica, I've got a solution for you. Tell the headhunter you'll do the trade association job, or one of the lesser paid charity jobs, for 25% of the package. See if they snap you up. If they do, and you succeed in the job, then you will be proved right and it will be clear that anyone can run a multi million pound global organisation. And you will have done the world a huge service.

miemohrs Thu 09-May-13 12:40:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

samandi Thu 09-May-13 12:41:22

I'd answer the next call and tell them in no uncertain terms that I won't be donating to them ever again. But then I have a very low tolerance for being harassed by telephone.

samandi Thu 09-May-13 12:42:28

miemohrs - that's appalling. Good on you for cancelling your dd.

ShadeofViolet Thu 09-May-13 12:43:50

I find also that once you donate to one charity, they can all smell blood and start ringing. I get calls from Breast cancer charities, NSPCC, Save the Children and RNIB.

A few years ago a charity used to send me pennies in the post. That put me off donating to them.

specialsubject Thu 09-May-13 12:45:29

if you want to donate to charity, set up a direct debit, put money in a collecting tin or send a cheque in an envelope with no return address.

any other way is inefficient or will result in a load of hassle.

ShadeofViolet Thu 09-May-13 12:50:16

But then you set up a direct debit and they call you asking for more. NSPCC did this to me so I too cancelled the direct debit.

Our local children's hospice runs a lottery for £1 a week, so I do that by direct debit every month.

lljkk Thu 09-May-13 14:13:01

I would love a list of charities that do & don't bother you after donation.

Water Aid is terrible for repeat marketing efforts; great cause, but I refuse to increase my monthly DD to them because they are Pests.

Medecins Sans Frontieres are brilliant; one good newsletter about their actual work and only that, every quarter, full of fascinating insights. Nothing else. I started with £5/month 12 yrs ago & now give them £20/month.

Sunnywithshowers Thu 09-May-13 14:53:07

eccentrica a shitload of people are worse paid than fundraisers, many of whom, like nurses, have valuable and essential jobs. I don't think it's fair either.

I've raised millions for charity, hence am 'valuable' to charities. I can generate my salary many times over. It sucks, but there it is.

Sunnywithshowers Thu 09-May-13 14:57:33

specialsubject collecting tins aren't the most effective way to give to charity because of the admin (counting coins and banking them).

A direct debit is fantastic, with gift aid (if you're a taxpayer) is even better. In some cases payroll giving is best as some lovely employers match donations.

Any charity worth it's salt will stop contacting you for donations if you ask them. And if they don't they are breaking data protection rules.

DevonLodger Thu 09-May-13 15:27:31

One of my charities is SmileTrain (direct debit plus gift aid monthly). They are brilliant. Newsletters and a bit of direct marketing but always carefully judged. Really moving letters from the children whose lives have been changed by the cleft surgery. No cold calls or pressure at all.

I'm a sucker for the text giving. Every time I see the adverts in the breaks on Sky News I'm reaching for my phone. UNICEF are the most pushy by far though and I get regular calls from them which I generally ignore. I wasn't bothered by the Syrian blanket collectors though. I am a charity collectors' dream and I do find text giving very effective. Just try and ignore the calls. I'm sure its a very successful way to raise money especially amongst younger donors who might not otherwise give.

NadiaWadia Thu 09-May-13 15:57:16

Have to say I agree with eccentrica. There seems to be a tacit understanding that we all expected to go along with, that people in the top jobs have to be paid enormous salaries as they are so special, unique and fantastic at their jobs. If you don't they will go elsewhere.

Except .... in many cases they are not. There are many examples of chief executives of banks and so on who have made a total balls up. Then they are paid off with enormous golden handshakes, and go off to mismanage another company. And why do they have to paid many many times what an average worker in the industry is paid? It has been shown that in the 60s (for example) ratios of the salaries of chief executives against workers' salaries were much lower, and yet things seemed to work just fine.

You would hope that the head of a charity would have a different mindset. A conspiracy of greed, that's what it is. And socially divisive.

And going back to the begging phone calls from charities, I agree they may be counterproductive. Has anyone researched how many donors never give again by text, or cancel existing DDs, due to this harassment?

MrsHoarder Thu 09-May-13 16:29:24

Also charities need to be careful about checking why people donated.

I gave money to a local charity which wasn't near me after they were involved in my friends treatment in lieu of flowers for his funeral. I really don't want to be rung up every few months to be asked for more money reminding me not of my friend's life, but the details of his very tragic death.

Aside from that charity I'm pretty abrupt with fundraisers. If one were to ask me if I was trying to get rid of him I would happily say yes. Except it wouldn't have got that far because as soon as its clear someone wants money I just say "I'm not interested, goodbye" and hang up.

eccentrica Thu 09-May-13 16:48:02

RussiansOnTheSpree And FWIW I think your list of people who do 'stuff that matters' is in many cases laughable. Butchers? Really?

Laughable, really? Would you care to run through the rest of the list and explain how what they do is worth less to society than being an executive for a charity? Teachers? Doctors? Firefighters? Police? Radiologists? Nurses? Lifeguards? and so on...

The job you linked to isn't a charity job, it's a trade association job. Sorry you couldn't understand the job spec.

Actually it was posted in Guardian Charities jobs and if you look on the left-hand side you'll see the industry is listed as 'Charities - International'. Sorry you couldn't understand the job spec.

Anyway, Eccentrica, I've got a solution for you. Tell the headhunter you'll do the trade association job, or one of the lesser paid charity jobs, for 25% of the package. See if they snap you up. If they do, and you succeed in the job, then you will be proved right and it will be clear that anyone can run a multi million pound global organisation. And you will have done the world a huge service.

Oh, grow up. The point is why should we expect executives who work for charities to put their own personal profit above their altruistic motives to help others? Many, many other people earn far less than they could because they are motivated by something other than maximising their own salary - wanting to make the world a better place and help others, for example. How odd that you wouldn't expect this of someone working for a charity.

eccentrica Thu 09-May-13 16:48:52

Which charity do/did you work for, by the way?

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