Do you have a project that needs funding to become a reality? Does your nonprofit rely on private donations to fund its operations? Is your organization like many small nonprofits that do not have a formal advancement/development plan nor assigned staff responsible for fundraising?
If you find yourself in that situation and want to know what it takes to be a fundraiser, here are a few pointers:
- Be the best version of yourself. Each fundraiser has his or her own style and values. Be yourself. Your character will distinguish you and leave a lasting impression on the donor.
- Get used to “no.” – Resilience is second nature to a fundraiser. Being able to overcome setbacks will help you bounce back after getting a “no” from donors, time after time.
- Enroll others in possibility. It’s essential to captivate donors the very first time you meet them and leaving them wanting to know more. Securing a second opportunity to visit will enable you to go into more detail.
- Have high self-esteem. Having high self-esteem means facing life with confidence, feeling capable and courageous, and feeling accepted as a person.
- Say “bye-bye’ to your ego. An ego trip fueled by an inflated sense of self is not welcome. Fundraisers are humble and readily acknowledge the contributions and success of others.
- Embody values that stand out. Deliver proposals that are appealing, and with your vales and that of the organization.
- Leverage your skills. You have a lot to offer. Share it with donors. That way they will get to know you better, and you’ll know whether or not you are hitting the mark with them.
- Generate coincidences. Be creative about getting in touch with donors. Find opportunities to meet up and create a productive relationship.
- Be clear as a bell. Set objectives, state them clearly, and get into action.
- Have gratitude. Be grateful for all people and circumstances. Say thank you, especially to donors.
- Articulate impact. Let donors know what impact they are having with your organization and beyond. Transparency with donors is essential.
In addition to these pointers, fundraisers adhere to a code of professional ethics. Observing best practices is essential to ensure that donors have confidence in you as a professional and trust your organization.
So, do you have what it takes to be a fundraiser? I’m sure you do Feel free to contact me if you are in doubt.
Silvia Bueso is a certified professional coach and an expert in The Art of Asking. She helps nonprofit leaders effectively make the ask in a way that allows them to achieve their teams’, projects’ and organizations’ objectives