Energy Vampires are those folks that literally suck the energy out from you, leaving you drained. We have all come across such people in our professional lives. They tend to be the ones that thrive on drama, office politics, etc.
In the fundraising world, this is amplified. The increase in incidents is likely because we often have two “bosses” — our employers (a combination of both boards and bosses) and the donors. So we not only have professional vampires around us, we have lay ones as well. As fundraising professionals, how often have we had to sit through a conversation with a well-intentioned person trying to convince us of the merits of running one more special event?
Furthermore, these Energy Vampires tend to look for empathic fundraisers. These are staff who may not have the maturity or experience to gently push back when directed towards a rabbit hole of an idea. These ghouls tend to feast on a profession already dealing with record levels of burnout.
What To Do About Energy Vampires?
Push back. That kind of negative energy usually has no place in a work setting and is terrible for morale. Just because the vampire is likely insecure about the work that they are doing is no reason for them to quash your spirit.
Remember why you chose to align yourself in the nonprofit arena at the beginning of your posting. Don’t let one person’s shoddy actions taint your desire to do good.
Sometimes, you have to simply ignore the problem (and hope it goes away). This may not be the most productive course of action, but it may help you from getting sucked into the quagmire of the vampire.
Until next week.