26 Jul 2016

Keeping on top of your fundraising during the busy summer months


From bake sales and summer fetes to marathons and fun runs, summer is often the best time to mobilise the fundraising troops and raise some cash for your cause. But this means that for most charities, summer is the busiest time of year. Multitasking, delegating and juggling a million things at once may be a bit of a stretch, and it can often be a bit of a struggle to keep on top of it all. Here are some handy tips on how to de-clutter your mind (and desk-space) and help you manage the summertime scramble in the charity world.

1. Delegate. It’s easy to get caught up on autopilot-mode and juggle so many things at once that it just feels natural. If you work for a large charity and there are lots of people around, don’t be afraid to delegate jobs and share tasks among colleagues. If you don’t have anyone to delegate to, consider recruiting some volunteers to help out or contacting businesses about their employee volunteering opportunities.

2. Use only one calendar. Whether you prefer to use a shared online calendar between you and your team, the calendar on your phone, a kitten-themed calendar on your office wall, or an old school year planner in your bag – it doesn’t matter, as long as you stick to it. Tip: Colour-code different things if you need to keep track of several things in one calendar.

3. Purge. Even if you don’t mind a little mess and dust, too much clutter also tends to clutter your mind. From throwing away old, crimpled papers and scruffy stationery to labelling files and organising them alphabetically, de-cluttering your desk space will help you stay on top of everything. Tip: don’t put the word ‘Miscellaneous’ on any file, because let’s face it, you'll most likely forget what you put in it – and end up putting everything into it.

4. Update your database. If you save business cards, make sure you add them onto an electronic database. This can help you map out important contacts and make a note of reaching out to them in the near future.

5. Tame your inbox. Create specific folders where non-essential emails go automatically and unsubscribe from newsletters and other subscriptions you’re no longer interested in.

6. Throughout the year, keep notes of the things that took you by surprise: did something take longer than anticipated? Did you do better than expected on an event or fundraising campaign? At the end of the year, you can take these into account and work them into your plan for next year.

7. Write a template checklist to be used for each event, where you can record who’s in charge of each task, and the timings and status of everything there is to do. This will help you keep on top of everything and having everyone in your team be aware of the tasks is a good thing.

8. Create email and desktop folders for each event. It might also be a good idea to organise them into sub-categories so that you can easily keep track of everything and this will ll allow you to be able to find everything quickly.

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