Find your passionate leader

Ralph Waldo Emerson famously said, “Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.” The most pivotal person on #GivingTuesday is the leader of your team – the Envoy of Enthusiasm. Who is that passionate, committed, ORGANIZED, individual who can quarterback your #GivingTuesday team? Perhaps it’s you, or your development director, or a young, enthusiastic staff member. Enthusiasm with tactical experience is a plus, but if you have to pick one key characteristic – focus on enthusiasm. Your leader is the starting point for your successful year-end campaign.

Build a great team to make it a great day

Next, focus on engaging the key team members - and loudest voices – among five key groups:

  • Staff
  • Board
  • Clients, participants, or alumni
  • Volunteers
  • Committed Donors and other potential Ambassadors

Encourage Team Members to Play to their Strengths

Engaging team members works best when they are asked to bring their talents or networks to the table.  There are lots of talents needed for a successful campaign, so there should be a job for everyone who wants to participate. Consider each of these roles as you build out your team:

  • Giving money
    • Direct donating
    • Challenge gifts
    • Matching funds
    • Raising money
    • Personal fundraisers launched on your behalf
  • Outreach to friends and family
    • Skill sharing
    • Marketing, PR
    • Design
    • Writing
    • Videography, Photography
  • Social Ambassadors
    • Sharing through social channels
    • Online or offline events
    • Networking
  • Outreach to community partners
    • In-kind support
    • Corporate support

Fill key positions with the best talent

Create a team structure that makes sense based on your organization’s size and structure.  Once roles are defined, slot people into the position that best matches his/her interest and capabilities.  Be sure that they are willing to spend 30 – 60 minutes each week on the campaign, particularly as you get close to the big day.   Then create a map that clearly lays out who is doing what, so everyone can understand how they fit into the overall campaign.  This will build the sense of team, reinforce accountability, and will create a common understanding about the key contribution each team member is making.   And hopefully, it creates a visual depiction of the ways that all these small tasks roll up into big impact for the organization.  Here is an example for a small organization: art2  

By Jamie McDonald