Dealing With Problems: This Fundraiser Is Just Too Stressful!





It is extremely unlikely that you will ever hear a person complain that they don’t have enough stress in their life. Everyone has stress and too much of it! So who needs to volunteer for a fundraising project that piles on more stress?

No one does. Unfortunately, some small amount of stress may be part and parcel to running a fundraising campaign, or even to just participating in one. But no fundraiser should be so stressful that it overtakes the life of you and your volunteers. When that starts to happen, you have to cut yourself some slack and find a way to reduce fundraising stress.

Tips For Dealing With Stressful Fundraising Problems

There could be any number of reasons that you and/or your volunteers are finding your fundraiser to be too stressful. You might be involved in a fundraiser that your group doesn’t have the skills and resources to manage; you might not have the time to do what needs to be done; you might not have enough help (an all too common occurrence in fundraising!); or you might just no tlike the fundraiser.

These are all very real, very reasonable reasons why you might feel overwhelmingly stressed by your fundraiser. But these are manageable situations, too. Together with your group, identify the sources of fundraising stress, and then find ways to correct the problem or problems. The following tips and suggestions can help.

Relax
Your effort in itself is a good and selfless thing. Take pride in yourself that you are selflessly giving of your time and energy, take a deep breath, and allow yourself a moment to relax.

Recruit more help
A lack of hands is often the only reason fundraisers become stressful. Put effort into recruiting more volunteers rather than trying to spin your wheels doing everything yourself. That’s time really worth the investment!

Delegate
Once you’ve built your working staff, decrease your workload and that of the others in your group by delegating and sharing the work. Free up your time and find enjoyment in your fundraiser!

Simplify
If your fundraiser is just too complex and unmanageable, find ways to simplify it. Don’t try to do so much with one event or sale. Find ways to cut the workload down, even if it means downsizing the fundraiser. Hold a few fundraisers rather than one large, unwieldy campaign.

Scrap it!
If the fundraiser is really not worth the effort and stress, scrap it and put your energy into something worthwhile!

Meet
Meet with your group and brainstorm how this fundraiser can be made less stressful; plan ahead to make the next year easier.

Hire some help
The best route for you to take may be to spend a little money on some professional help. In most cases, groups find the increase in funds from a manageable, successful fundraising consultant pay for themselves.

Work your fundraising company
Fundraising companies are experts in the field and they have many resources designed to make your life in fundraising easier. Take advantage of everything they offer and let them earn their commission!

Hit the boards
Join an online fundraising support group, chat, or forum. You’ll find others to there boost your confidence and offer creative solutions to common fundraising problems.

As a last piece of advice – have some fun! Fundraising is not supposed to be a drag and a drain on you personally. Connect with your fellow fundraisers, take some time to relax and enjoy each other, and build a support system. All by itself, finding someone to share your misery with can be a great solution to reducing the stress of a burdensome fundraiser.



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  1. Posted by Clay Boggess 16th November, 2010 at 7:58 am

    Often times fundraisers become stressful for lack of proper goal-setting from the start. It all starts with having the right purpose and a realistic fundraising goal. Will people actually want to support what you are attempting to accomplish or are you simply a ‘lone-ranger’ out there trying to achieve your own objectives?

  2. Posted by Ted Grigg 29th March, 2014 at 2:35 pm

    Excellent advice. A lot of good things here. The most common shortcoming in my opinion is to believe that the many hours and capabilities required are available solely from volunteers.

    There a reason that you need money to make money. Hire out the missing skills and energy required to succeed. Thinking that your nonprofit can grow — or even survive without hiring the talent is false.

    Remember that insanity demonstrates itself when you expect to succeed by doing the same things over and over again.

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