Whether you are a for-profit business, a not-for-profit or nonprofit organization, a charity, foundation, or service club, there are 4 S's related to leadership that help build capacity, sustainability, and increase your fundraising efforts. Those are Speaking, Sales, Sponsorship, and Service.
Let’s break these down separately.
With Association Management (or in your role as a leader, board president, business owner, or a director of a not-for-profit organization), it is important to remember that speaking and sharing your message/mission through presentations and/or media is a vital, yet complex skill set for success.
Making presentations that are compelling and clear is an important part of the sponsorship and fund generation process (just as such clarity is important to organizational leadership). More than simply sharing information to an audience, effective speaking and presentation skills involves:
- Creating connections and rapport with the audience
- Setting the stage for trust so that your message is believable and understandable
- Crafting your message and practising it repeatedly.
Speaking also requires confidence, preparation, understanding your audience, and knowing how to effectively engage participation and foster calls to action. When you master being an effective speaker, you will notice the impact in your team, organization, and external relationships.
Even if you represent a not-for-profit organization, association, or service club, it is important to note that you are still in a position to promote your services, fill your event(s), and raise funds for your mission. Whatever form your “sales” take, your promotions should best serve and connect with your clients. Getting comfortable with conversations that are sales related is important. Becoming a proficient speaker will definitely help.
Sponsorship is one way that service clubs, associations, entrepreneurs, and not-for-profit organizations fund their projects, expand their influence, and make a bigger impact in the world. Being skilled in relationship-building and collaboration along with knowing how sponsorship works will help you be successful in generating more revenue while making a bigger difference through your work. If you need help exploring where sponsorship can help you achieve your goals and bring in more revenue, contact Raise a Dream.
Service to stakeholders, clients, and the community is an important part of a leader's responsibilities. When you are “in service” to your stakeholders, your funders, and the community you serve, you will have more success. Being in service to others creates a cycle of positive reciprocity whereby you will find others becoming a champion for your cause, your organization, and your mission. Being in service creates stronger collaborations and partnerships.
Alternatively, when you approach your cause, mission, or projects from the perspective of scarcity, desperation, or entitlement, the line-up to help you gets smaller. People want to be part of organizations and communities that are empowered.
What Do These Four S's Have in Common?
Look for opportunities to build new relationships, strengthen existing relationships, and form new connections. Relationships are the foundation to building capacity and making a bigger impact.