Stephanie Moran, trusts and major donors funding officer, Plan UK

The trusts and major donors funding officer at Plan UK says mum knows best.

- The best advice I've had

No matter how small or insignificant the task in hand, do it to the best of your ability and be proud of it. I was once in a position where I and most of my colleagues were unhappy and the general quality of work we were doing was slipping. It was my mum who said to me that I would be happier if I forgot about everyone else and did my job as best I could because then I could be proud of having made the best of what I had. I did, and she was right. That was the best advice I've ever had - I can't always control the situation, but I can control how I behave in it.

- The biggest challenge I've faced

In a previous job, I was responsible for raising funds from a small grant maker. The only chance to impress was when they invited us in to present our proposals once a year. I was a relatively inexperienced fundraiser, so it was petrifying for me to have to commit as much information as possible to memory on six projects on different themes in different countries. I remember sitting in a boardroom with at least eight stony-faced interviewers seated on the other side of the table asking questions that ranged from the perfectly straightforward to things like "how do you know the farmers we provide the tools to won't use them to grow illegal substances?"

- My greatest hit

After only six months in major donor fundraising, I took a call from a gentleman who wanted to donate up to £100,000. After some careful management, I succeeded in getting him to double it. Now that was a good day.

- My worst moment

Being invited to do a talk to a group of 200 members of Inner Wheel, the club for the wives, sisters, mothers and daughters of Rotary members, at an indoor picnic. The requested topic was Uganda. Imagine my horror when I got there and was told by the lady who had organised it that one of the committee members had spent 20 years in Uganda! It was early in my career and I hadn't even been to Africa. At that moment, 200 women eating sandwiches in a town hall seemed like the scariest audience in the world.

- My top tip

Make sure you love what you do. If you don't, it's obvious to your supporters and you will make yourself miserable.

Interview by Annie Kelly.

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