Name: Lara Bundock
Job Title: CEO & Founder
Twitter Handle: @snowdropproject
- How long have you been a member of ella for?
About a year and half
- What would you say have been the main benefits?
Meeting with other CEOs and Directors around the country who have either lots of experience or are also just starting out.
Having people to share your current difficulties and experiences with.
Sharing difficulties with others who have the same issues or have got through them means you don’t feel like you’re the only one facing such challenges.
- What do you enjoy most?
Meeting with the same people each month that you can build history, rapport and support with.
The teaching in the morning is always varied, relevant and practical; the afternoons are just a great chance for personal trouble shooting and advice sharing. I love it.
- What has been the impact on you as a person and as an organisation?
Personally, ella has helped me to progress in my role running Snowdrop; I set it up from nothing. We had no money, no office space and just ideas. It has grown in an incredible way and the stability of that is partly due to what I’ve learnt each month at ella. My experience was in managing volunteers and working in the field but in terms of the skills needed to run the organisation, I was lacking. That’s where ella came in and gave me guidance, knowledge and challenges that increased my stability and confidence in my role and thus the healthy growth of the organisation. It is a great place to regularly go once a month for input in different areas. ella highlights skills and areas you need to be aware of, for example; team management, fundraising, measuring and report impact and looking after yourself. All of those things I was missing and ella has filled in the gaps
- Would you recommend ella to other charity leaders? In a sentence what would you say the benefits are?
100% I would and have recommended it others!
It is a room of advisors and peers that you can only dream of as a CEO.
- How do think ella has helped you to progress in your role?
The gradual regular input has really helped me to progress at a manageable rate. It’s that steady progression while at the same time working in the environment that has been key. It is something that is unavailable and unaffordable elsewhere.
I have also learnt a lot from others sharing their experiences and value the chance to now start giving back some of what I am learning to others in the group.
- Charity income? How has it grown from when you started to where it is now and how did ella help in that growth?
Snowdrop has been running for 4 years as a volunteer project but only 18 months as a registered charity. In the first year we tripled our income and due to successfully winning a funding bid recently we are set to quadruple this year. Part of the reason for that is my involvement in ella.
One of the aspects that really strengthened our bid was our monitoring procedures. Off the back of an ella training session, we re-designed a whole new way of doing monitoring as we realised that what we had already was ineffective. It’s one of the things that gave us strength and credibility. Previously we had not known how to design our monitoring effectively; the ella session gave us some clear guidelines and ideas and helped us to get the bid, which in turn has completely stabilised the organisation for the next 3 years.
8. What do you think can ella do to improve?
Very little! Our group is just starting to look at doing occasional socials. That’s the only thing I would have added so we’ll see how that goes.
Huge congratulations to Lara and the Snowdrop team from us all at ella!