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Getting Out of Spreadsheets: How to Rally Your Whole Team Around a Big Tech Change
About the Webinar

Is your technology holding you back? Your organization's day-to-day operations rely on a slew of hardware and software tools to get the job done, but these systems so often feel like more of a hindrance than a help. Sometimes the problems are obvious, like when staff struggle with clunky old platforms, or have to waste time with manual data imports. In other cases, you can tell something’s just not right, even if you’re not quite sure where the issue lies. You know there’s got to be a better way… but how can you get there?

Come hear how to manage technology transformation, making big changes and getting the whole team on board with the project!  

In this session, we’ll tell the story of how other organizations got there: learning to collaborate more effectively, celebrating our successes, creating a collective vision of our future, and a whole lot of “managing up”. You’ll learn what works, and come away with ideas for how YOU can be the agent of change for your own organization.

About the Speakers

Michelle Paul

VP Growth Strategy, BackOffice Thinking

An experienced and enthusiastic leader, Michelle has devoted her career to nonprofit technology strategy since 2005, helping organizations overcome operational challenges, increase impact, and cultivate stronger constituent relationships. As VP Growth Strategy for BackOffice Thinking, Michelle oversees the consulting firm’s revenue and operational growth, leading business development efforts while also keeping a strong focus on team culture and success. Previously, Michelle built and scaled PatronManager, a leading CRM and ticketing system for nonprofit arts organizations, from inception through acquisition. (Fun fact: she’s also a two-time Jeopardy! champion.) 

Kristen Beireis
Manager, BackOffice Thinking

Kristen is an early adopter of marketing technologies, enjoys learning new systems, and is passionate about appropriately matching technology to the people and organizations who use it. As the Marketing Manager at BackOffice Thinking she uses over 15 years of experience marketing through CRM’s and websites to educate, and support nonprofits in making technology decisions. In her spare time, she sings in local choirs, performs in musical theater, plays board games, and enjoys hiking in local metroparks. 

CASE Career Level


Level 1 - Early Career (acquire knowledge about the common core of the advancement function for new professionals and mid-career professionals transitioning into advancement)

Level 2 - Emerging Early Career (develop technical, explicit knowledge in a chosen specialty and grow skills in the advancement competencies)

Level 3 - Practicing/maturing Mid-Career (work on achieving fluency in all aspects of advancement and grow leadership skills and gain a deeper understanding of ethics)

Level 4 - Senior/experienced Mid-Career (develop deep expertise in your discipline and your understanding of other disciplines)

Level 5 - Expert Seasoned Professional (develop an understanding of the role advancement plays in executing higher-level institutional strategy)

Level 6 - Leadership/Transforming Seasoned Professional (contribute with work that is more strategic than managerial and maintain a multidisciplinary understanding and portfolio)

CASE Competencies

Global and Cultural Competence
Working effectively with and for people from different geographies and cultural perspectives (Cultural intelligence, understanding bias, creating a safe work environment for all)


Integrity and Professionalism
Excellence in conduct representing oneself and one’s institution and the profession (Builds and maintains trust, ethical conduct, personal accountability, storytelling, effective communicator, presenter and facilitator)

Business and Financial Acumen
Understands the business situation and financial factors and takes responsibility for the best course of action (Data based decision making, financial fluency, institutional business knowledge, industry business knowledge)


Industry/Sector Expertise
Focused upon knowledge and skills requisite to specific domains of practice within the profession (Fundraising, Constituent and Alumni Relations, Marketing and Communications, Public Affairs and Government Relations, Management, Advancement Services)


Relationship Building
Effectively utilizing interpersonal skills to build and maintain strong professional relationships between the organization and internal and external stakeholders (Effectively engage volunteers and stakeholders, consensus building, collaboration and teamwork, stewardship, negotiation, conflict resolution, proactive relationship development)


Emotional Intelligence
Recognizing emotions and understanding how they impact you and others to guide thinking and behavior (Active listening, self-awareness, empathy, social awareness, social skill)

Strategic Thinking
Employs methods and processes to view a situation, assess factors, and create effective implementation plans with measurable results (Align strategy with action, critical thinking, innovative problem solving, change management, adaptability to complexity, strategic planning, understanding data and context, strategic stakeholder engagement)


Leading with vision and credibility, to effectively manage self, others and resources to achieve organizational impact.  The ability to define what the future should look like, align people with that vision, and influence others through authenticity and inspiration to make the vision happen despite obstacles. (Entrepreneurial, models’ engagement in advancement, manages ambiguity, future focused, executive presence, perseverance, courageous communicator, continuous learning)
Availability: No future session
Credit Offered:
1 CFRE Credit
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