Nonprofit leaders face many diverse and complex challenges on their journey to achieving their vision and executing their mission. Raising and managing money are surely two of them. However, making sure one's organization has adequate resources often begins with a conversation about changing the fundraising strategy. While admirable, and perhaps also needed, that's often not the solution to the core of the problem. The real solution is to shift the organization's mindset from scarcity to abundance.
What is Scarcity Thinking?
Scarcity is holding you back. Every day. When scarcity thinking is in you, and a part of your organization’s culture, it means that there is a specific “fixed” mindset that things are the way they are, your skills are the best they can be, and there is a limit to what you can realistically achieve (and in fundraising, what you can realistically fundraise for). This is SO far from the truth, especially in the era of digital fundraising and venture philanthropy. There are billions (BILLIONS!) of dollars given away each year and you must believe that you can and will attract that funding, if you simply begin to ask for it.
Embracing an Abundance Mindset Will Boost Your Fundraising Efforts
So, how to get rid of scarcity thinking and develop new habits that promote an abundance mindset?
Holding tightly onto the money you do raise and thinking your possibilities to fundraise are limited can only smother your organization causing more damage than good. Meanwhile, an abundance mindset, once embraced, would instill in you the belief that the resources are all out there and all you need to do is just go for it and ask for them. Remember to keep in mind that you also need more than money to build your movement and achieve success. It is a long-term process that begins with YOU deciding to change your ways of thinking and doing.
How to Start Adopting an Abundance Mindset
You deserve abundance. Your movement deserves abundance and as you watch other nonprofit organization's collect six and seven-figure gifts, you need to start thinking that you and your mission are the next headline.
In addition to my previous article on Network For Good Discussing 3 Tactics To Shift Your Nonprofit From Scarcity To Abundance Mindset, here are some additional tips to keep you on track!
1. Practice abundance thinking in your daily life
"Do something every day that scares you!" No, seriously. Do it. Someone who has embraced an abundance mindset keeps it at all times, whether they’re at work, home, or even just out for fun. Practice saying 'yes' and seek to discover (or rediscover!) your passion, skills, and what you or your nonprofit has to offer others to create a more just, fair, and kind world. Do not use limiting language that determines what you can or cannot do. Say "I'm going to try and raise $1MIL over the next decade", instead of, "I hope we can maintain our $150,000 budget for another five years". And then, share these goals and ideas with everyone around you. The sky will become the limit but also keep in mind two things. First, the systems we exist in are oppressive and you likely inherited the scarcity mindset from our dominant culture that forces us to conform to was or being and doping that very often, make us unwell. Resist it daily by choosing abundance, choosing joy, and encouraging others around you to do the same- even on the tough days when a grant application is not accepted.
2. Don’t be afraid to let some people go
To accomplish your goals, you need energized and dedicated board members and staff. You need to ask yourself if your current team could be holding your efforts back. If these folks, regardless of their role at the organization, are not in line with your philosophy, culture, and vision, it’s not only okay but a must to let them go. You can watch out Network for Good webinar on "Exit Strategies for Board Members' to get you started ending uninspired, unhealthy relationships. Your team is your biggest asset, so you need them to be brave, bold, and visionary.
3. Don’t let short-term failure demotivate you
When it comes to this process, you need to be thinking long-term. "Where do I and this organization want to be in a decade?" You may not find immediate success or a high financial ROI. This is okay. Develop sustainable relationships with donors and partners as they are more likely to give more the longer they stay connected with you and the more frequently they hear about your long-term vision. Failure is necessary and should be taken as a way to learn and prevent future mistakes. Remember, you have permission to both learn and unlearn how this work can achieve its goals.
4. Celebrate ALL success
Other people’s successes do not determine your own. You have your own plans and with the right team, strategy, and determination, your organization will get there as well. Any organizational success regardless of size is a milestone you should celebrate and brings you a step closer to achieving your mission. Furthermore, we need to be collaborators and not competitors, so acknowledge and celebrate the achievements of others in your community and ecosystem! Keep pushing through and take other’s successes as motivation to do better rather than have it keep you from going forward.
Honestly, this work is all about mindset. Your organization can truly change the world if you simply believe in it enough. To get started, learn more about the nonprofit services we offer and why we are best known for our Abundance Breakthroughs via https://www.alyssafwright.com/for-nonprofit-organizations