Recently our President and Founder, Mollye Rhea, was interviewed by the team at the Cause Marketing Summit. The Cause Marketing Summit is a day for socially responsible businesspeople or nonprofit professionals who are on a mission to raise funds, develop compelling communications campaigns, and/or increase employee engagement to come together to learn how to partner to create fun and engaging campaigns to help their nonprofit raise money. This week as we release our research findings on these partnership dynamics, we are publishing Mollye’s interview that appeared on the Cause Marketing Summit blog earlier this month.
Meet Mollye Rhea, Partnerships Expert
We interviewed For Momentum’s Founder and President, Mollye Rhea, to hear more about how she “Plays Well With Others” and works to forge successful cause-related partnerships with her clients. Our friends at For Momentum have been hard at work on their newly released research study about managing national and local corporate partnerships. Their findings are based on data and best practices from 50+ leading nonprofits. It’s no surprise that in order to be successful, partnerships require strong collaboration and communication between headquarters and chapter offices.
About Mollye Rhea: When Mollye Rhea founded For Momentum in 2003, she recognized that she was leading one of few agencies that specialized in cause marketing. On a daily basis, Mollye realizes her goal of strengthening communities by cultivating partnerships between nonprofit organizations and corporations—a goal she envisioned as a result of a volunteer opportunity she had early in her career. Through her work innonprofit development, brand marketing, and cause marketing, Mollye has a unique 360-degree perspective of what fosters success in strategic cause partnerships. In her 25+ years in the field, she has developed sponsorship strategies for dozens of nonprofit organizations and hundreds of brands.
Question: If you could solve/cure ONE of the world’s biggest challenges, what would it be?
Answer: My passion is supporting youth in America. In fact, you could say my cause career began when I was asked to lead a philanthropic project for the Atlanta Ad Club – raising money for a foster youth program. Issues for our kids range from hunger, homelessness and foster care on one end of the spectrum through fighting illness and onwards toward educational advancement and workforce readiness. At every point on this spectrum, investing in America’s youth will result in solving most of our other challenges.
Question: What is your most pressing agenda item for this calendar year? Answer: For Momentum is honored to support a variety of important nonprofit and corporate foundation missions. Front and center for me every day is leading my team in securing support and awareness to advance their work. And measuring impact is such an important, and elusive topic in social impact campaigns.
Question: What are the main cause(s) you work on currently?
Answer: We are honored to work with 20+ organizations at any given time. I am truly inspired by the work of all these organizations. Picking one would be too much like Sophie’s choice!
Question: What is the current status/trend of the missions you work on?
Answer: I know it is cliché, but with the range of missions we support, I would say the one constant across them all is change. Every day, we must work to challenge the status quo and develop newer, faster, better ways of advancing, supporting and impacting missions. Technology and communication channels are constantly evolving and it is vital that we embrace the positive value of change.
Do you see the need for funding and support increasing or decreasing over the next five years?
Answer: Funding needs will always be on the rise. Economic, political and demographic factors aside, our nonprofit professional community is always advancing and creating important initiatives and research that needs funding to flourish.
Question: What do you work tirelessly on to further your mission?
Answer: Developing content and practices that advance the success of social impact partnerships. For Momentum celebrated our 14th-anniversary last week. To say the space has evolved would be a glaring understatement. We tirelessly dedicate our efforts toward continually advancing the practice and leading the way in CSR.
Question: How can we (the CMS Tribe) help you?
Answer: Sharing your information, insights, and experience. Each year we conduct an annual survey digging deeper into issues cause practitioners grapple with. Our goal is to understand the state of play, uncover pain points and develop best practices. This year’s survey identifies critical pain points and healing best practices. The more participation we get, the more robust our data. This year’s survey had over 130 participants. The more the merrier! We hope to garner more and more participation every year.
Question: Name a favorite community nonprofit or effort you support locally on a personal level?
Answer: I have many favorites of course, so I’ll share my most recent example. On May 20th, I participated in the Walk for Wishes for Make a Wish Georgia. The most unusual effort was sleeping outside in NYC to help Covenant House support homeless youth.
Question: What are some of the tools you use to do business?
Answer: We engaged a company to create a highly-customized version of Salesforce that we use for customer outreach when we are seeking strategic partnerships. This sophisticated software helps us unite companies and brands with nonprofits in a way that benefits both organizations.
Question: Tell me something good that has happened in the past year.
Answer: More and more, companies are realizing the importance of integrating social impact into their priority mix. Since last spring, For Momentum has worked with 5 leading companies to advance their work in this arena. The more companies invest and prioritize, the more impact we can all generate.
Question: Will you upload the last fun picture you took of your family and/or pet.
Answer: Here’s a BOGO. My baby girl with her baby girl.