Fundraising takes everyone rowing together

Fundraising isn’t easy. It is also a team sport. First though, people need to know they are on the revenue-generation team.

Workshops can be a cause for eye-rolling (even just the word), or they can lead to productive results that provide widespread benefit. Sometimes they fail because there is not enough structure to get from beginning to end with something having been accomplished.

In her book “Mission Control, How Nonprofits and Governments Can Focus, Achieve More, and Change the World,” Liana Downey writes that workshops can be beneficial both for nonprofits just starting up and those needing to take a reassessing look at their activities.

To get the most out of such a get-together, Downey offers a suggested agenda for an organization’s first workshop. It looks like this:


Introductions and overview of objectives (15 minutes)


Getting-to-know-you exercise (30 minutes)

* Agree on desirable behavior for the day; e.g., put all devices away, be candid, don’t interrupt others, etc. (10 minutes); and,

* Review and discuss facts (30-60 minutes): Clients, Organization, Sector and Environment.


Set the goal (30-60 minutes):

* Develop a short list of outcomes;

* Choose the desired outcome;

* Set boundaries;

* Choose a target; and,

* Set the time frame.


Identify the options (60 minutes)

* Use trees to identify key factors and options; and,

* Confirm next meeting time and agree who will research the options that are likely to work (10 minutes).