Giving Compass' Take:

• Claire Axelrad, writing for GuideStar Blog, compiles a list of strategies for nonprofit professionals on how to overcome fears around fundraising. 

• How can donors play a role in easing these fears? 

• Read about these nine principles of community fundraising. 

Most people are deathly afraid of fundraising. They’d rather undergo root canal.

Fear of fundraising comes from four basic places in my experience:

  • Fear of begging for money. You must retire the tin cup mode of fundraising. You aren’t asking people to give you money for your personal use. No! You’re offering them the opportunity to make an impact that aligns, hopefully, with their values.
  • Fear of looking stupid. And, in fact, a volunteer can do something a paid staff member can’t—offer persuasive testimonial that serves as “social proof” your organization is necessary and effective.
  • Fear of rejection. If your prospect says, “No,” that’s okay. It’s their loss, not yours. Maybe your mission doesn’t float their particular boat, and they have other philanthropic interests. Good for them!  Time for you to move on to the next donor meeting and offer up your wonderful philanthropic opportunity to someone who may be more receptive.
  • Fear of public speaking. This fear likely stems from fear of being ostracized. Darwin posited survival of the most empathic, meaning communities where people bonded together and took care of one another were those that survived. They were the “most fit.” Humans accordingly feared being cast out.

Read the full article about strategies to overcome fear of fundraising by Claire Axelrad at GuideStar Blog