My new favourite productivity hack for fundraisers

I don’t think I’m alone.

I just can’t resist a good, juicy productivity hack – and since you’re reading this, I’ll bet you love ’em too!

If you’re a regular reader (THANK YOU!), you’ll know that I’m an avid time blocker.

I schedule all of my priorities into my calendar in 90-minute chunks, usually focused in the morning, when I know I am functioning at my peak.

(Speaking of peaks, do you know when your trough is? According to Daniel Pink, if you’re like most people, probably early to mid-afternoon).

I still love time blocking, and use it on a daily basis – but if you’re ready to super-size the productivity hack, let me introduce you to my favourite new thing:


Oh, beautiful batching!

The basic principle is this:

Since we humans are so bad at multi-tasking and context switching, the more we can group similar tasks or activities together, the more productive we’ll be.

In fact, I am writing to you from the middle of a batching day right now! *waving*

Every few weeks I set aside a day just for creating content for you – I use this time to create free resources, tip sheets, and articles like this that I hope make your life a little easier, your day a little better, and your fundraising a little (or lot!) more successful.

How could this apply to your work? When it comes to fundraising, you could easily batch:

- developing some new, compelling stories

- refreshing your thank you letters

- writing your new donor e-mail welcome series

Writing is a great way to use batching – but pretty much any activity that benefits from sustained focus and concentration is a great candidate.

And you can always start small – if you can’t manage a whole day, what about trying out a batching morning?

Is there anything that’s been on your to do list forever, that you know would have a big impact on your fundraising success if you could just carve out the time to sit down and do it?

Give it a try – have a look at your calendar, schedule in some time, shut your office door (or if you don’t have one, get thee to a coffee shop or co-working space!)…

And enjoy the magic of batching!

Emma Lewzey, CFRE is an award-winning fundraiser who has been helping great causes like yours build and grow successful fundraising programs since 1995. She’s the President-Elect of the world’s largest Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Chapter in Toronto, and the National Chair of AFP’s Fellowship in Inclusion and Philanthropy. Contact Emma to book your free discovery session, and find out how you can work together to strategically focus your precious resources on the fundraising initiatives that truly work.

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