If you’re in Capital Campaign Mode, you’ll be having a fast-paced year.
It will be full of surprises and challenges. Certainly not boring!
Since you’ll be pretty busy, we wanted to offer you these New Year’s resolutions. Here’s hoping they’ll make your year more fun and more successful!
And if you’re not in Campaign Mode yet, don’t worry, these resolutions will still help you, too.
Resolution 1: Focus on impact.
If you can keep your heart focused on the wonderful work you’re helping to fund, it will keep you going.
Every day, take a moment to just think about the impact you’re making with every gift you close.
You are doing one of the most important jobs in the world. Never doubt that!
Resolution 2: Set aside two hours every week to schedule meetings with donors.
There may be nothing more important than making these calls to schedule meetings with your top prospects.
And it’s tough to do — with all the activity you’ll be involved in.
So just do it. Put the time on your calendar — maybe it’s every Wednesday afternoon, or some other time — and make it happen!
Resolution 3: Spend time with program staff.
Here are the people who are closest to your mission. Listen to their stories. Build close relationships with these very important people.
Bring them to meet major donors. Make them part of your team.
Get out there with program staff and see your program in action. It’s a huge boost!
Resolution 4: Focus on getting to know your donors before asking them for money.
You certainly don’t want your donors to think all you want is their money.
It’s so very important to get to know your donors as people — real people. When you do, that’s when you start having more fun in your job.
You look forward to seeing them again, just like friends. And they look forward to seeing you too!
Resolution 5: Track your progress relentlessly.
Measuring your activity and your results is so very key. Every little thing counts.
So track it:
- How many calls?
- How many prospects?
- How big is the pipeline?
- How many oral but not written commitments?
These measures tell the complete story of your campaign’s progress.
Resolution 6: Give credit to everyone else.
You may be quarterbacking the entire effort, but the smartest fundraisers keep themselves out of the limelight.
Who is up on the stage acknowledging the gift — or receiving the award?
It’s your key donors and your organization’s leaders.
You are in the back — having set the whole thing up — with a smile on your face.
Resolution 7: If you don’t love your organization’s mission, quit!
We hear from too many people who admit that it’s really just a job, and that they have lost their steam for the cause.
If this is happening to you, we can’t imagine anything more full of drudgery.
Go ahead and quit.
Find a cause you believe in — one that feeds you with energy and enthusiasm. Then it will hardly feel like work.
Resolution 8: Talk less, listen more.
You know the adage: listen your way to the gift.
If you are doing all the talking, you’re not gathering any information about your donor. Or your boss. Or your colleagues.
Only through listening will you find out what you need to know.
Resolution 9: Sleep enough and eat well.
And take some time off, too.
If you don’t take care of yourself, you’ll never make it through the long and fast pace of a big campaign.
Put yourself first and you’ll have the fuel to think clearly, act boldly, and ask proudly.
Resolution 10: When in doubt, throw a party!
Yes, this is Gail’s #1 fundraising motto after 30 years in fundraising. What does it mean?
Make everything fun if you possibly can. For your donors, for your volunteer leaders, for your staff.
If you are helping people to enjoy themselves, they will want to hang with you longer. They’ll stick with you — and get even more deeply involved.
What are your New Year resolutions when it comes to your campaign and fundraising? Leave us a comment below.