Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

We made it! Welcome to the final post in our series, 4 Lessons from the Trenches to Prepare for Giving Season. We’ve talked about harnessing the emotional power of giving, overcoming capacity challenges, and creating the right mix of funding sources.  In this final installment, we’ll talk about how to make the most of your team to win big at year-end.

When we Do-Gooders were tasked with a last-minute team-building fundraising contest, we quickly learned that the fastest way to achieve the best results was to break up tasks by skill set. Most teams included people from various departments at Network for Good. To win, we had to play to our strengths. We let the customer success manager create the donation page, the marketer writes the email appeal, and the sales professionals solicit donors.

But how could this apply to nonprofits, who often don’t have a full palette of corporate skill sets to get the job done?

In speaking to the nonprofits we supported during our team-building exercise, and even our nonprofit customers, we learn that there are often more resources available than they initially realize. When it comes to fundraising, backgrounds in marketing, sales, communications, and even the fine arts can prove to be translatable skills. If you’re lucky enough to have more than one person working in your office, dig deep and pay attention. Your colleagues may have many hidden talents for you to harness.

Other opportunities for resources are with your board, your volunteers, and your largest supporters. Some may have the skills you need and may be just waiting for you to ask for help. In fact, it doesn’t hurt to include a line in your newsletter about a certain volunteer skill you’re looking for. And, as we mentioned earlier in this series, there are organizations that specialize in recruiting pro-bono volunteers.

And if the skills are not readily available, we are lucky that we live in an age where the internet is full of educational and how-to resources. You can learn a lot for free just by spending some time searching and watching videos. It may be worth looking into some affordable paid resources as well, especially when there’s a wide opportunity for growth.

And as a bonus idea, you can use technology to fill the gap in your organization’s skill set. Your fundraising software plays a huge role in this and can make all the difference between a fundraising program that’s rockin’ and rollin’… and one that’s falling flat. You need a system that’s functional, but also easy to use and not over-engineered. Network for Good’s fundraising software goes one step further by offering access to a personal fundraising coach to help you solve your unique challenges and come up with the best campaigns for year-end. How’s that for filling a resource gap?

How to Write a Fundraising Letter That Wins Back Lapsed Donors
The Difference Between a Mission and Vision for Nonprofits
How to Write a Nonprofit Annual Report
How to Engage Your Board Members as Fundraisers