Working and volunteering for a nonprofit organization can be very rewarding and equally stressful. Perhaps the greatest stressor is related to fundraising. Raising money is essential to any nonprofit because without it, many nonprofits would be forced to decrease their services, layoff staff or even close their doors. For those that work or volunteer for nonprofits, such fears can lead to Burnout.
Fundraising Burnout Tips
What It Feels Like
True enough, very few people wake up every morning with an unquenchable thirst to raise money. However, a person that is experiencing burnout may have feelings of despise toward fundraising. Or there may be feelings of anxiety regarding their inability to raise enough or bear the weight of the nonprofit’s existence on their shoulders. Also, a person may also get a pit in their stomach just thinking about the details necessary to have a fundraiser such scheduling the right talent, venue and catering.
How It Happens
Burnout happens because of a prolonged breakdown in the fundraising process. There are usually a lot of significant factors that occur rather than one isolated incident. Committees may get lost in the details of planning the fundraiser. There may be continued strife among board members regarding their personal differences. Sticking to a budget or not having one can cause problems. Not having a plan for the fundraiser and operating in panic mode may cause unnecessary stress. Booking talent that bombs year after year can cause a lack of confidence and increased stress. Experiencing many of these repeatedly will inevitably result in dreading the next fundraiser.
What to Do About It
The good news is that Burnout can be helped. You can overcome those negative feeling related to raising money. Here are some tips that can help. First, remember your mission statement and memorize it. Many fundraising committees and board members do not even know the mission statement of the nonprofit they serve. Recalling the mission statement can help you refocus and gain a new approach to your next fundraiser. Second, have a clearly laid out budget so that everyone is aware of all expenses and the amount that must be raised to break even. Third, learn to play well with others on the committee or board. Choose your battles. Look for things that you can agree on rather than focusing on your differences. Fourth, find the right talent that is able to customize the performance to your event. Using an experienced agent that is able to clearly match the talent to your event will reduce stress and promote feelings of optimism for your fundraiser. Finally, remember to evaluate and keep notes of your fundraiser. Identify the pros and cons clearly so that you are able to make your fundraiser better next year. This will also help to ensure you are not recreating the wheel; thereby reducing stress further.
Fundraising is hard work. But, it does not have to feel overwhelming. Are you looking for more tips on how to make your next fundraiser a success? How about some support from an experienced agency that can offer some hindsight to your next fundraiser? Then I invite you to call 615-283-0039, where together we can make your next fundraiser a success.