I am a creature of habit. I love my routines. More, I rely on them to keep me going. They provide comfort, security, direction. My routines ensure that things get done, deadlines aren’t missed. They guarantee a consistency in my work.
That is all to the good. Too often, fundraising falls victim to inattention. We get “too busy” and steps don’t get taken. Deadlines get pushed back, and back until doing the thing gets pushed out of mind. Plans don’t get written or written ones not followed. And then we wonder why we miss our fundraising goals. Why our donors abandon us.
We often talk about the importance of creating a culture of philanthropy. It’s just as important to create a culture of fundraising.
Fundraising needs to be the thing you do every day. It needs to be structured. It must be planned. The steps you have to make must become habit, routine.
But even as you do, you have to beware of complacency. You cannot just do things because that’s the way we have always we have done it. You have to stay current–see what changes are occurring in the philanthropic landscape. Consider if these are applicable to your situation. If they are, does this mean that there are changes you should make to your fundraising routines? Does something need to be added? Replaced?
As a creature of habit, I find I often approach the new with a wariness. My first inclination is to reject that with which I am uncomfortable. And I am always uncomfortable with what I don’t (yet!) know.
I know, however, that new can be wonderful. Can be important. And will, overtime, become the known. And the known is in my comfort zone.
My hesitancy to rush out and embrace newness prevents me from ever being hip. I’m not on the cutting edge.
But neither do I suffer from being too distracted and ceasing to do the very things that brought (or likely will bring) success. It’s a balancing act. Keep the good habits; stick to the successful routines. And stay open to the possibilities that they could be improved