How your emotional intelligence can improve your fundraising

It’s the most difficult — and the easiest — thing about fundraising.

Fundraising is relationship.

And the skills you have that help you build and keep your human relationships strong are basically the same skills that can make you a better fundraiser.

Here’s are some great tips from Fired Up Fundraising, at Three Ways Emotional Intelligence Can Help You Become a Better Fundraiser

  1. Helps you focus on the donor and not yourself. You do better in life and in fundraising when you make the conversation about them, not about you.
  2. Sharpens your radar to listen to your donor’s cues. Watch what donors do and say. When they donate, they’re telling you they want to donate. They’re also showing you how much they want to donate. And what messaging motivates them. Also ask them what they think!
  3. Helps you navigate donor conversations. So often when someone is irate, it takes careful listening to understand what the problem really is. Same with donors. Complaints can lead to better connection when you handle them well.

It’s not easy to apply your emotional intelligence to a large group of people who are different from you in a number of ways. But if thinking about them as people you’re in relationship with will help every time.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff BrooksJeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 35 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com. More.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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About the blogger

Jeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 30 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com.

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