Creative concepts without compromise

Howard Lake | 4 July 2016 | Blogs

A focused and powerful creative concept drives fundraising growth. Every fundraiser knows this yet most fundraisers have faced the biggest barrier to achieving it – internal conflict.
Time and time again artfully created powerful ideas are destroyed. Different departments are left to negotiate the organisation’s ‘big fundraising message’ resulting in a compromised concept and therefore compromised performance.
But how can you avoid conflict, consensus and compromise?
We’ve studied and worked with over 300 organisations and concluded the following:

  1. Other departments must be aware of what the fundraising department needs in order to raise money. This is required from everybody from the board to administrators. Everyone is responsible for making the organisation fundraisable.
  2. Everyone must know and understand that fundraising needs a focused and powerful creative concept. If other departments do not like this, they must at the very least professionally respect it. ‘I don’t like it’ must not be allowed to compete with ‘I have evidence it works.’
  3. The fundraiser must invest in building relationships with colleagues across the organisation Lunches and coffees must become a strategic priority.
  4. Every department should have a ‘no compromise champion.’ This person is highly trained and responsible for managing input to and feedback from the fundraising department.
  5. Select the decision makers before you start your creative process and make sure everyone knows who is in that group. Their job is to make a non-compromised recommendation to the chief executive.
  6. The final call, and refusal to compromise, must come from the chief executive. So fundraisers, next time your creative concept is being compromised you know who to speak to… your chief executive.

© Alan Clayton, June 2016
Alan Clayton presents ‘Inspiration and action’ at the Fundraising Convention 2016. 12:00 – 13:00, Monday 4th July 2016

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