Try these practices in your personal and philanthropic life in 2018 for the best year yet
With the start of the new year comes new chances to excel in your fundraising ventures. At Big Fundraising Ideas, we see the start of the new year as a chance to create new habits that improve the outcomes of your fundraisers, as well as your quality of life as you learn to apply them outside the fundraising context. Make 2018 a time to develop new habits of setting goals, stretching creativity, and communicating more effectively.
Fundraise by Setting a Goal
From school fundraising to home renovation, make concerted goal setting a part of your daily practice in 2018. However, goal setting is most effective when it helps you take small steps toward bigger success. Making goal setting a key feature of your fundraiser is a powerful way to drive home the purpose, mission, and impact your fundraiser can have, and it helps concentrate the energy of your student sellers and community customers.
The key to a successful fundraiser is setting a goal that will push the limits of what you can earn while inspiring your students to push themselves that extra mile to reach the goal. A good goal will:
- Improve upon past performance.
- Include quantitative and qualitative metrics.
- Be attainable enough to inspire optimal performance.
For more on goal setting, take a look at our 4 Goal Setting Strategies for your Fundraiser and make these a habit in 2018. Practicing goal setting will shape your thinking in all areas of your life, helping you break big ideas into smaller, attainable parts.
Fundraise with Bold Creativity
Because school fundraisers are carried out yearly, students, parents and teachers might begin to feel a sense of exhaustion--and perhaps even boredom--when the fundraiser is the same each year. Make it a habit this year to push yourself to think outside the box on what it means to hold a school fundraiser.
Decide that 2018 will be your year of creative thinking and seek to reframe how your community sees the school fundraising process. This can be as simple as picking a particularly relevant theme that is current in pop culture, or as significant as converting to a big event prize program that focuses your efforts on participation and a big finish that the whole school can enjoy.
Extend this habit beyond your fundraising responsibilities and pick up a new creative hobby, such as painting or drawing. Training your mind to play in creative spaces will benefit your mood and your ability to come up with winning ideas in business and community support.
Fundraise with Better Listening
At its core, fundraising is essentially communication. From inspiring your student sellers to crafting the perfect fundraising pitch, good communication is key to a more successful school fundraiser and more engagement from students and parents.
The traditional model of communication is all about sending, receiving and interpreting messages. Schools usually have a good idea of the message they’re sending, but it can be difficult to understand exactly what response your customers are giving. So how can you listen better to your customers? In addition to having face-to-face conversations with community members, try evaluating your data to see what messages the numbers might be sending. Data can be one of the most valuable sources of communicative feedback in a school fundraiser.
And, communication isn’t exclusively an outward-facing practice. Communicating with your students is a great way to make sure that they are informed about the fundraising goals, deadlines, and prizes. Try establishing a timeline for communicating with students. Plot out targeted communications to make sure that students are staying active in their fundraising and proactively participating.
These are habits you don’t want to break if bigger fundraising goals are in your future. Practice makes perfect, so get a jump-start on these skills in the New Year and set your school up for long-term success.