Fundraising: Art, Skill And Work
If you have attended school in the last 50 years, you are well acquainted with the word ?fundraiser?. It would seem in this age of corporate sponsorship, advertising, and community involvement, fundraising would not be the difficult process that it is. But this is not so. Fundraising is big business, and requires much skill on the part of the organizer. Occasionally, you are involved with a fundraising event, and everything seems to flow as if it were an everyday occurrence. Then, you have the more normal situation of Murphy?s Law: if it can go wrong, it will. The event that went off without a hitch, I can almost guarantee was a success. The one with problems, more than likely did not achieve the goal. There are a few simple rules to implement when participating in a fundraising event that will ensure the success of the venture. I?m going to discuss those ground rules, here in brief. If, after reading these ground rules, you need further information, there are many websites that offer more insight, a more detailed explanation, and even real assistance with planning your fundraiser. At slight cost to you.
The first building block of the successful fundraising event is known as ?work?. That?s right, lots and lots of work. As your organization prepares to undertake the fundraising event, the most important contribution that every member can make, is to examine the potential leaders and make the most of the talent available. Your fundraiser?s success will depend upon the ability of the designated leader. Friendship, likes, dislikes, or relation to the proposed leader should not be a factor. The only characteristics up for debate are the leadership and organizational skills of your fundraising captain.
The next two phases? success will be a direct result of the fundraising captain, chairman, leader, or whatever title you have superimposed for the event?s ?go to? person. In this article, he or she will be referred to as ?leader?. The leader?s art and skill are ?on the chopping block? so to speak. It requires skill to lead many different people, with many different personalities, obligations, responsibilities, and varying levels of commitment into one, successful direction. It can be done, however. The skill is a result of much hard work and commitment on the part of the leader. Organization and leadership are not magic. They develop over time, and with continual effort, and they are highly prized possessions in today?s business world. The art aspect of the equation begins to become evident as the leader deals with prospective customers, vendors, and other participants not directly involved as organization members. Inducing a person to buy into whatever your fundraiser has chosen to sell or promote, is an art. Effective promotion of your fundraiser requires that you are knowledgeable about your product or service, that you believe in the value the fundraiser is providing, and that you sell all of that to a prospective buyer. Dale Carnegie would be proud. Now, if you aren?t familiar with Dale Carnegie, you need to finish this article and vote for someone else to lead the fundraiser.
About the Author: Steve Williams is a vetern fundraiser and shares his success for "Easy Fundraising Projects" at http://www.easy-fundraising-projects.com