[Strategies for Success - Smart fundraising ideas from Hartsook]

Slow is Smooth, Smooth is Fast

imageThere is a “predictable” randomness to moving a fundraising project from soup to nuts. Randomness… because issues pop up unexpectedly. Predictable… because they’re the same recurring issues. It’s just human nature. Here are three tips to reducing predictable randomness, which can be applied to all-things-project-management:

Measure twice, cut once.
Don’t breeze by a cryptic email if it doesn’t make sense. Make sure you ask, “What am I missing?” Asking for clarity is not a sign of weakness: it’s smart and the right thing to do. Sometimes, the person giving the directions isn’t entirely sure, and your question may highlight a flaw in the process and underscore a decision that needs to be made before moving forward.

The 800-pound gorilla must weigh in.
You know the saying: “Where does an 800-pound gorilla sit?” “Anywhere it wants.” These are individuals who have strong opinions which must be baked in to the project. You may dread asking because you don’t want to hear the answer. But don’t put it off and don’t avoid it. Their opinions matter.

Slow is smooth, smooth is fast.
It’s counterintuitive, but if you’re in a hurry and have a tight timeline, slow down. If you appear to have a window of disposable time on a project, hurry up. It comes more naturally to ebb and flow based on the tyranny of the urgent, but time will be lost in the long run. Slow down and hurry up – but intentionally, not instinctively.

Whether you’re just planning an event, developing an eight-page case statement or overseeing a $10-million campaign, here’s the take-away: Ask questions (early and often); slow down when you feel pressured; and hurry up when you have time to spare.

Denise Rhoades, Communications Director, [email protected]

logoJoin Us on the Growing Philanthropy Tour

Next stops on the road to achieving Hartsook’s mission of growing philanthropy by 25 percent in the next 20 years:

Grapevine, Tex.
February 1, 2019

IGNITE 2019: Conference
Sustainable Fundraising
Karin Cox

Inverness-shire, Scotland
February 4-6, 2019

The Great Fundraising Masterclass
Adrian Sargeant

London
February 7-8, 2019

LSE Annual Behavioural Public Policy Lecture
Grantham Centre
John List

Inverness-shire, Scotland
February 4-6, 2019

Think Double! Fundraising Masterclass
Adrian Sargeant

Past Stops on the Tour

Resources for Smart Fundraising Available on Kindle

Keep up to date on the latest fundraising trends with the Kindle ASR Media collection:

  • Fundraising Leadership – The definitive source for empowering board members to become pro-active fundraising leaders by Karin L. Cox
  • Performance-Driven Fundraising – Handy, yet entertaining reference tool for new and seasoned fundraisers by Matthew J. Beem

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Strategies for Success explores smart ideas, connecting with thousands of fundraising professionals. We welcome your best practices contributions or comments. Send to Strategies for Success editor Karin Cox, [email protected]. If you’d like a free subscription to Strategies for Success or its monthly companion, eHartsook on Philanthropy, contact [email protected].