Recalibrate Your Attitude

What do you think about when you think about fundraising?  Do you feel that you are begging? That you are hitting on someone?  That it is painful, embarrassing, hard?  Do you quiver at the thought of rejection, so much so that you can’t even envision being accepted?

These seem to be the accepted thoughts of people working with and at nonprofits.  Whether I am working with staff or volunteers, these are the feelings and thoughts that get shared when I say that “f” word.

So I ask you—am I in the minority?  I think of fundraising as simply offering an opportunity to someone to support good works.  I think of it as a gift you give to the potential donor as much as a gift you are requesting from that same prospect.

I’ve been lucky.  I’ve worked with many donors who have shared their joy in the support they were able to provide my organization.  I’ve spoken with many volunteers who are proud of what they do and prouder still when that includes a cash gift.

So, ok, I’m a bit of a Pollyanna.  I think the “f” in fundraising should stand for fortunate, fabulous, fantastic, fun.  Fundraising, I truly believe, offers all that and more to donors who are making a difference at organizations that change lives, make miracles, offer a safe haven.  And how lucky am I to be part of this?

If you can’t see fundraising in this light, then let me ask you something:  Why are you working at or involved with a nonprofit?

I’m not trying to chase anyone away.  I simply want those who need to, to re-calibrate their attitude.

I also want staff who look at their boards as barriers, unhelpful, more than a little bit of a pain to consider what they are doing to help those board members be more effective.  And Boards to consider that perhaps they need to explain to staff what would help them do what the staff is asking rather than either saying “Sure, I’ll do that” and not do it, or simply not say anything at all.

After all, it’s not really about us, is it?  It’s about those we serve, the communities we improve, the differences we make

So adjust your attitude; think in a whole new way.  You will be amazed at the difference it will make.

 

Janet Levine works with nonprofits, helping them to improve fundraising capacity and be more effective.  Learn how she can help your organization at http://janetlevineconsulting.com.  Or email her at janet@janetlevineconsulting.com

 

Advertisements

About janetlevineconsulting

For over 20 years, Janet Levine has worked for and with nonprofit and educational organizations, helping to grow their advancement programs. Her consulting company, Janet Levine Consulting, serves a wide range of organizations from small, all-volunteer agencies to major national organizations. She regularly teaches courses in non-profit management, fundraising and grant development, both face-to-face and online at http://courses.lmlearningstation.com/. In addition to her nonprofit work, Janet brings years of experience as a business and sales manager in the for-profit sector. She has an MBA from the Graziadio School of Business at Pepperdine University.
This entry was posted in fundraising and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s