1 Thing Fundraisers Can Do To Get Through COVID-19

show donors you care

If you are like most people right now, you are stuck at home. Whether or not you have work, you are probably wondering when this is going to end. What the next stage will look like. Thinking about your past. Thinking about your present. Thinking about your future.

What we can’t control is the past. It’s important to look at it, and see what we could have done better.

What we can’t control is the future. We wish we could but honestly, we probably are going to have a resurgence of this virus in the fall and winter. And that’s going to suck a lot. More people are going to die. And we won’t be able to stop that either.

What we can control is here, at this moment, right now.

So let’s take a minute to increase our emotional intelligence. That is something we can do. And it can help us connect to our donors.

How Increasing Your Emotional Intelligence Helps You

You become calmer. You can self-regulate. You can stop blaming yourself, shaming yourself, and attacking yourself when you don’t get as much done as you want to.

It’s hard to get a lot done right now. Don’t hold yourself to an unrealistic standard; the amount of work you were doing last year, for example.

You can use this time to learn more about what it means to be more self-aware. And that can help not just you, but everyone around you.

It can help you see where your donors are at. It can help you see how to build relationships with them, even over the phone, even on an online meeting.

DON’T Treat Donors Like ATMs

The temptation will be great right now. Because we have to raise money fast.

You can help your donors feel like they can do something, they can have a measure of control in an uncertain world.

You can help donors, supporters and volunteers feel connected, and build relationships during this time.

So ask yourself, what’s your donor relationship superpower?

  • Is your superpower connecting on the phone?
  • Is it sending a little gift to make someone feel special?
  • Is it thank you notes?
  • Is it making a funny video for them?
  • Is it helping research them so your major gifts officer can have a really good meeting with them?

How To Make Online Meeting Tofu Taste Good

When you chat with your donors, aside from checking in with them, can you show you care by going deeper and seeing where they’re really at?

Do you have the courage to be real with your donors, and vulnerable? This is where your emotional intelligence can really shine. For example:

Can you commiserate about the things you miss with your donor?

Can you talk about the opportunities, creativity, and ideas for the next phase together?

Whatever it is, now is the perfect time to increase your emotional intelligence, reconnect, spice up your blandishments, and build deeper relationships that will stand the test of time.

You will need them, now more than ever.

Mazarine Treyz
Mazarine Treyz is a nationally-recognized strategist for fundraising planning and communications. She is the CEO of Wild Woman Fundraising and the Author of The Wild Woman's Guide to Fundraising, as well as other books. Creator of over 12 e-courses, 3 masterclasses and 3 books, she has coached and taught over 12,000 nonprofit professionals how to be better fundraisers since 2010. Mazarine is the founder of the Fundraising Career Conference and the Nonprofit Leadership Summit.

One Comment

  1. Laine Seaton July 18, 2020 at 8:48 pm - Reply

    Such a terrific article! It’s such a strong reminder that we’re all trying hard to do our very best during these incredibly difficult and uncertain times.

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