It seems odd to me that steering committee chairs feel like they have to run the campaign alone. I’ve talked to chairs who get frustrated, apathetic, or even want to quit because it’s all too much for them. One chair I conversed with felt frustrated that the campaign wasn’t getting any traction, and he felt like the campaign needed another leader. And I asked, “Why do you feel that you’re the only one to tackle this situation?” There are no cowboys in fundraising. Fundraising is a team sport.
As a member of the steering committee, you can lean on others. Otherwise, you’ll burn out and your team will be frustrated. When issues arise in the campaign, it’s the job of your fellow members of the steering committee to help you come to a resolution.
For example, when major donors have questions about the project finances, giving options, or why you need the money in the first place, don’t worry. As a fundraiser, you don’t have to know all the answers. Pass questions on to the CEO, your capital campaign consultant, or other qualified teammates to answer that concern. Tell the donor, “That’s a great question! You know, I think our board treasurer would be the best person to answer it. Let’s set up a meeting next week to meet with her.” There is no shame in not knowing the answer to a question.
Use your team to share in the frustrations of the campaign, get advice, leverage the donor relationship, and celebrate the victories. That’s why they’re there. Fundraising is a team sport.
Ready to hang up your hat? Dickerson, Bakker & Associates can help you round up a strong team of people to make your campaign succeed. Contact us today!