Or do they? I don’t think boards raise money. I think board members do. Sometimes, that is. Other times they just talk about it, or feel guilty about what they think they should be doing but are not doing.
Let’s begin our conversation about fundraising with what we find difficult about it. I mean the whole board talking about what each person finds difficult. Then let’s talk about what we like, about things we can do. For example, I might find it difficult to ask someone for a donation. But I might find it easy to do detail work in putting on a fundraising event. I might also find it easy to thank a donor for giving. I didn’t say ask. I said thank.
Maybe we could spend an evening on the phones, just calling donors, reporting in, thanking them, and maybe asking a question like, “How did you come to be a donor for our organization?” Grab your cell phone, call from various locations in the same building, and report back on your experience. Boards I talk to that have done this find it to be an exhilarating experience.
Encourage everyone to find their way to help raise money. Boards only raise money when board members raise money. And boards talk about raising money, in conversations intense enough to lead to action.
Talk about it. Act on it. And thank you, for you are fulfilling an important responsibility of being a member of a nonprofit board.