If You Think Fundraising is Hard, This Blog is for You

Asking people for money is hard.

After working in the fundraising business for over a decade, training and coaching in over 50 different countries with diverse cultures, customs, and people groups—I can tell you, with complete certainty, that there is not a single place in the world where talking about other people’s money is easy.

The majority of people don’t like the financial part of fundraising. Why? Because asking other people for money can be awkward.

But the good part is that it doesn’t have to be.

Our coaches and staff have been working with clients for decades, increasing funding and teaching ministries and organizations to ask in a way that benefits both the ministry AND the donor.

But you don’t have to take our word for it. We’ll allow our friend Kara to convince you through her own story of working with one of our coaches….

"As I sit here in south-western Germany with tree covered mountains out my window and 19 high school voices echoing through my house, I almost can’t even remember a life before this. (And to think that just a year ago I was nearing the end of my fundraising journey to get me here.)

I knew I was expected to raise funds to carry me through this position. But when my sending organization told me that I should consider getting a coach, I was pretty annoyed, if I’m honest.

Do they really think I’m that helpless?

Joke was on me… I was.

I had no idea what I was doing. When they connected me with my coach, Drew, he started guiding me through the basics of fundraising and got me out of the gate, down the runway, and up in the air, so to speak. Once I had my footing, Drew became a source of accountability to me, but he also became more than that.

Fundraising was HARD.

Many days I got frustrated or ended up in tears because of a bad meeting or my own insecurities. But Drew was an incredibly safe person that I could text at any time of day or night, knowing he would pray for me and give me a word of encouragement to keep me going.

Several times I met with him over Skype at the Starbucks around the corner from my house and I came to the meeting feeling like a deflated balloon. By the end of our coaching sessions, I almost always felt encouraged, and I always knew that he was standing in solidarity with me.

One major turning point for me happened somewhere in the beginning/middle of my fundraising journey: I remember clearly having a piece of paper with about 10 names and phone numbers written on it of people that I needed to call ASAP. I had an hour to work, so I sat down with my phone in my hand to knock a few people off my list.

And that’s about as far as I got.

I didn’t call a single person that hour. And then the next day, as I sat waiting to meet with Drew, my heart was in my throat and my stomach was in knots. I was so ashamed and I felt like a failure.

But Drew didn’t shame me. In fact, he listened as I told him what had happened—and he challenged me with a question: What was I believing that so paralyzed me that I couldn’t make a single phone call? He asked me about the lies in my head and gave me a week to really sit down and be honest with myself about what was going on. What I came back with was monumental. There were so many lies that I was running into that I didn’t need to be believing at all. Drew helped me walk through the darkness swirling in my mind and helped me find things I could say to myself instead—creating positive thought patterns that would spur me forward instead of causing me to pull back.

It was still hard every day, but Drew had helped me see the truth that was right in front of me and he continued to point me back to that truth over and over again until I was fully funded and on a plane to Germany.

Drew laughed with me, let me cry, stood up for me when I didn’t know how to stand up for myself, and celebrated with me in every victory (no matter how big or how small). I would not have been as sane of a person in my fundraising process if it weren’t for him. I am incredibly thankful for Drew and our coaching relationship!

(Story from Kara, a beloved Tailored Fundraising Solutions Client)

If you think fundraising is hard, it doesn’t have to be. Click here to work with one of our trained Tailored Fundraising coaches today (so you can write us a thank-you story like Kara’s someday).

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