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Last Year in Review

It is time to celebrate last year and use it as a steppingstone to create an even better 2013.

It is time to call the development (fundraising) team together. You may want to include some of these individuals as part of your team board development committee members, staff, and other volunteers who lead fundraising activities – event chairs for instance. Here are five items for your agenda:

Celebrate – Lunch for everyone. Ask everyone what were the best moments for them during the year. Ask everyone to list the successes. Make sure that there are several about the mission and people rather than money. Ensure that every one of the best moments is cheered and appreciated. Ignore the disappointments of 2012, for now, even if you missed every goal. It is time to energize everyone so that 2013 is the best year yet.

What didn’t work? – What are lessons learned? If something failed to meet expectations, how do you improve on it or should it be discarded?

What worked? – What went well? How can it be done better? Will it work if you do it again or is it time to abandon it?

What should we start doing that we have never done before? – The world is changing, the demographics of your community are changing, your donors are aging, and the needs of your clients are evolving. What new ways of engaging and cultivating donors should you start using?

How do we measure success? – It is uninspiring to measure success based upon the money raised. Find something that inspires your team and use that to measure success in 2013.

Next Step:

Hold the meeting in a comfortable location

Solidify your team and inspire your team during the meeting

Build a plan for 2013 based upon the meeting

Using the meeting to form the plan ensures that the plan reflects your team’s thoughts. Using their thoughts ensures you have their buy-in, giving them ownership and enthusiasm. Their buy-in also helps to ensure the plan is realistic and the goals are likely to be met or surpassed. Meeting the goals will ensure the mission receives the support it needs to change the clients’ lives and increase your nonprofit’s sustainability.

You are just one meeting away from having a great 2013!

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