When it comes to Annual Campaigns, the success of your campaign is directly affected by the success of your volunteer leaders. And you, as a nonprofit executive, can have a great impact on their success.

    The first and most important step is recruiting the right leaders. Who are they? They are passionate for the organization, have the respect of their peers and are willing to set the example by giving a gift at a leadership level and securing additional gifts. (It’s no longer the board member who missed the meeting!)

    During the recruitment process, share with them their job description. Keep it simple and clear so they know what they are committing to and know what success looks like.

    After you’ve recruited the right leaders, it is important to keep them engaged. Not only will they stay the course with you (even if it gets a little rocky) but they will keep your board engaged, as well.

    Consider these key steps to leader engagement:

    • Involve them in the campaign planning and goal-setting process. Their input and buy-in will ensure you are working toward the same goals.
    • Prepare them to present the plan to the board and ask for approval of all goals. (Does your board approve the board giving goal?  If not, they aren’t committed to giving at any level.)
    • Communicate with them weekly during the heat of the campaign. Knowledge is power and will keep them engaged and productive.
    • Challenge, motivate and thank them constantly. (And then thank them again.)
    • Be an inspirational role model and a leader. Inspire them to inspire others!
    • Celebrate success and give them the recognition they deserve.

    One of Donor By Design’s core beliefs is “Leadership is Everything.” To ensure success of your campaign, do everything you can to support, encourage and inspire your leaders. Here’s to a successful campaign!

    Posted by Peggy Vinson
    Peggy Vinson

    Written by Peggy Vinson

    Since joining DBD in 2005, Peggy has coached executive staff and volunteers on increasing the effectiveness of their fundraising efforts. Peggy’s prescriptive approach focuses on the organization’s strengths and challenges. She meets her clients where they are, helping all to grow their fundraising skills. By developing strategic, measurable plans and skill sets, Peggy helps organizations not only meet their goals this year, but increase their capacity for the future.

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