We are excited to offer a new kind of program at the Prospect Research Institute – the Profile Peer Review Program! But mostly we’re thankful to have students like Lisa Blockus Brown, Director of Stewardship and Prospect Research at Camp Sea Gull & Camp Seafarer in Raleigh, NC. We’ve interviewed her here so she can explain it to you.
Rumor has it that the latest Prospect Research Institute offering was your idea. How did it come about?
Lisa: Thanks for the credit, Jen. The idea came to me as I was taking the Introduction to Prospect Profiles class through the Prospect Research Institute. For me, one of the most valuable exercises was to have Jen review my profile, offer feedback on how to make it stronger, and share her findings on my prospect that I had not even uncovered. I realized then that this was the kind of professional development experience that I was craving—an opportunity to collaborate with others in the field, sharpen my skills, and discover other resources—free or subscription based—of which I was unaware.
We all do prospect profiles a bit differently: different formats, different resources, and different techniques to go after that “hard to find” information. With such diversity there is also so much we can learn from each other. I hope that a program like the Profile Peer Review becomes a forum in which professionals can come to the table willing to give of themselves, and also be willing to receive feedback from others to ultimately elevate the quality of their profiles.
If it’s just peer review, why not call up a couple of colleagues and swap profiles? What’s so special about doing it with the Prospect Research Institute?
Lisa: If only it was that easy! The Prospect Research Institute is a conduit for likeminded professionals (many of whom I have yet to meet) to come together to freshen our skills. With a skilled facilitator in the mix to provide the structure, to hold us accountable, and ask the tough questions, I am able to be a participant: free to learn and free to share when and how I am able. I just don’t think we are able to experience the depth and breadth of learning when we try to do it on our own.
Who should attend the Profile Peer Review Program? Will you be attending the first Program?
Lisa: Yes, I am participating—I wouldn’t miss it! I am eager to see this concept of structured peer review come to fruition and to connect with other professionals who are seeking to expand their network and desire to be a part of a collaborative professional development experience where the participants have the opportunity to be both the learner and the teacher.