4 Steps to Keeping the Love Alive
As a fundraiser, you've worked long and hard to cultivate a strong relationship with marketing and communications colleagues within your organization, because you know that's the only way to unleash your nonprofit's full relationship- building mojo with prospects and supporters.
This active collaboration on knowing your supporters is the key to strong and lasting relationships that generate increased giving and engagement on other fronts. (And if you haven't started partnering yet, right now is the time to do just that.)
Together with your marcom colleagues, you've put in the time and effort to build this vital partnership, and you've probably seen some payoff. But all too often, in this partnership as in love, the partners can begin to take each other for granted.
Here are four ways to keep your partnership with your marcom colleagues positive, fun and highly productive.
Understand the other partner's point of view
The single easiest way to spoil your relationship is to be argumentative because you need to be right. It's deadly. Argumentative people argue to the nth degree until they "win" about everything and anything. They don't consider their partners' viewpoints and rarely, if ever, compromise. Any criticism, even if justified, is met with defensive and sometimes angry responses as the need to be right overrides the need to compromise and improve the relationship.
Effective relationship building stems from understanding the other person's point of view. Put the same effort into doing so with your marcom colleagues as you do with your prospects. Avoid futile arguments, and remember that the objective is not winning but what's best for your partnership (and your revenue).
Be prepared to work hard
John Lennon told us, "all you need is love," and while it's a memorable song, it just isn't true. Successful relationships require hard work. Just look at what happened to famous lovers throughout time — Scarlett O'Hara and Rhett Butler from "Gone With the Wind," for example.