Why shouldn’t you ask your board members to “fundraise” or “friendraise”?

Because as we discussed during today’s webinar on Making the Ask, people don’t know what the heck you are talking about.

There are scores of different ways that board members can “fundraise” and “friendraise.” If you don’t make your requests much more clear and specific, you’ll end up with board members who (a) do nothing (b) flounder around aimlessly (c) do it the “wrong way” according to your definitions.

A much better approach is to focus your asks of your board members on one single, next step.

This is the “Getting Thing Done” approach. So maybe your first next step for board members is to bring in names of five people they know who they believe are capable of making a $1,000 gift to your organization, whether those people are ready to do that or not.

The second step is showing up at the board meeting and reviewing everyone’s lists together to create a priority prospect list. Then you ask board members to volunteer to take these priority people out to lunch to talk about the organization — friendraising — without asking for anything. And so forth.

But you don’t plop the whole long list of to-dos on them at once and say “Go fundraise.” You ask them to do these simple, clear things one step at a time. You manage your board by helping them manage their process, and everyone wins.

We discussed this and several other techniques for making your asks (for everything, not just money) today during the webinar. We also covered five ways that nonprofits sabotage their asks. If you missed it, you can access the recording starting Friday if you have the All-Access Pass ($145 for three months; $465 for one year).

Here are a few comments from today’s participants:

“Great advice as always. Seeing ourselves in the sabotaging examples! Very helpful.” ~ Kelly Parry, Crossroads Hospice Society

“Very specific solutions.  Helped me to put into perspective where I really need to focus my energy.” ~ Joyce Bignell, Colorado Statewide Parent Coalition

“I loved the clear outline provided on steps I can take to make a more effective call to action.” ~ Janee Shaw, Chestnut Hill Benevolent Association

“A focused webinar on the basics of asking, with some detailed steps to change your approach today.”  ~ Kim Rymer, Volunteers of America, Minnesota

“Interactive presentation about developing more effective asks. Good explanation of common nonprofit mistakes and how to correct them.” ~ Sally Flocks, PEDS

“During the webinar, I had a brainstorm for a campaign we are working on because I made an effort to think visually. I hope it works!” ~ Marie Branch, Memphis Public Tennis Centers

You can improve the way you ask for money, volunteers, and more, just like these nonprofit marketers and fundraisers did today, and get better results. Sign up for your All-Access Pass now and watch the recording when it fits your schedule.

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