People of Masterworks | Christine Somoza, VP, Group Account Director

People of Masterworks is a series highlighting talented folks who contribute to the success of our ministry partners on a daily basis. Our hope is that, by getting to know some of our team members, you’ll also learn more about Masterworks and our mission to move hearts and minds to action.

What is your biggest contribution to our ministry partners’ success?

One of the analogies about teaming I love is the picture of an orchestra. One hundred individuals with unique gifts and instruments, all playing in such unison that they can produce a melody and a beautiful masterpiece. In that picture, I don’t see myself as playing one of the instruments, but rather as the conductor. I believe my contributions to our partner’s success largely have to do with getting our incredible Masterworks team extended and working in unison to come alongside organizations to collaborate on exceeding their financial goals and strategic priorities.

What motivates you in your work?

When I studied business and marketing in college, I loved the principles. But time and time again, I wasn’t passionate about the case studies or the class projects, which largely focused on big consumer brands. At the end of the day, it comes down to how I want to spend my time. Every minute of every day at Masterworks feels important — like I’m doing critical work for amazing faith-based organizations and ultimately building God’s Kingdom.

How would you describe the path that led you to the work you do now?

Relatively early on in my college career I realized that what motivated me was doing something that “made the world a better place,” as cliche as it is. The strong conviction I had was — nonprofits should be run like businesses — and they shouldn’t be scared of profit. Every dollar of profit is what actually enables life-changing programs to exist in schools, homeless communities, prisons, and churches around the world. If the brightest minds and best thinkers would be willing to devote even a portion of their careers to a cause they loved, think how much good could be accomplished.

What do you see as the biggest challenge facing nonprofits today?

When I started in this business, there was a commonly held belief that nonprofits were about 10 years behind corporate America in strategy, technology, capabilities, and the like. There was grace for that back then. But today, not only is the world changing rapidly before our eyes, but consumers have an expectation that brands know them intimately. That they’ll have a tailored experience. That the local rescue mission can communicate to them with the same sophistication that Amazon does. The hyper-focus on user experience is real. And consumers don’t have the patience to get an email that’s irrelevant or wait three full seconds for a web page to load. So, we (the collective we in the nonprofit world) need to rise to the occasion.

What are you learning by working with ministries?

I’m learning that organizations willing to pivot and innovate are seeing the most success. This was especially true through the pandemic. Many organizations, and other businesses for that matter, were scared. They put their heads in the sand and prayed that their donors, customers, and consumers would still support them. Other organizations took the opportunity to improve their facilities, enhance their menu, train their staff, the list goes on and on. I’m learning that pivoting and trying something new doesn’t mean you have to abandon what you’ve always known. You can keep one foot firmly planted in your core business and core competencies, while using the other to innovate.

What’s one thing you want ministries to know about client service at Masterworks?

We do our best work for our clients when we are true partners. When you bring us along, when you tell us more instead of less, when we have a seat at the table…we find that it positively impacts strategy, results, and momentum. And we have way more fun.

What in your personal life equips you to serve our clients every day/motivates you to serve?

Seeing lives and communities changed all over the world by the work of our clients is the most motivating and rewarding part of this job.