Take imperfect action to raise more money
I see you there, my perfectionist fundraising friend!
I spotted you so easily because I struggle mightily with my own perfectionist tendencies.
But one of the most important lessons I’ve learned in starting my own business is this:
Imperfect action almost always beats taking no action at all.
Do you find yourself hesitating too often, waiting for perfect conditions before taking action to move towards your goals?
Here’s some inspiration to help you take that imperfect next step towards better fundraising.
1. Trust yourself to make that donor call
Pick up the phone, and make that donor call.
You don’t need a perfect script. You don’t need to have all the answers.
Stay present. Be ready to ask some great questions. Listen deeply.
You already have everything you need to have a great conversation with your supporters – trust yourself!
The more you do it, the more your confidence will grow, and the easier each call will get. Who knows - you might even start looking forward to making your donor calls!
2. Remember that major donors are human too
If there is any part of fundraising that most reinforces our perfectionist tendencies, I’d say it’s working with major donors.
There is such a fear of approaching a high net worth donor with anything less than perfect polish – and I think that can hold fundraisers back from doing our most effective work.
It’s important to remember that major donors are human too. They experience the same joys, the same pain, and they care about the cause just like you do.
Of course, I’m not suggesting you start being careless or sloppy about your work.
What I am saying is that most donors would prefer to hear back from you quickly/authentically rather than a month down the road/perfectly.
3. Book that fundraising meeting before you feel ready
Is there just one imperfect action you can take this week to move your fundraising forward?
Have you been waiting for perfect conditions to make a call? Book a donor meeting? Have a difficult conversation with a coworker?
Often, when we feel we aren’t ready, or we think we don’t have all the facts, we’re actually getting in our own way, and sabotaging our chances of success.
Set yourself a goal to take just one imperfect action this week – go ahead and schedule it right into your calendar so you don’t forget.
And on that note, I’ll say goodbye until next week – I can’t write the perfect conclusion to this article, because I have an important imperfect call to make!
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