Are You a 'Yes' Person?
[My business partner] Richard [Perry] and I have met and worked with so many different types of personalities in our business. To be honest, it's invigorating and frustrating all at the same time. But, over the years, we've encountered two distinct types of people that have both made an impression on us and served as predictors of their success in fundraising.
It's the "Yes"camp vs. the "No" camp.
In dealing with problems, mistakes, obstacles and challenges, we come across two types of people (yes, I know, I'm making a massive generalization, but hang with me) – those people who look at the above situations and, almost every time, have an attitude of "Yes, let's figure out how to overcome these and create a solution," and those people whose reaction is, "No, this is a big problem and it's not going to work."
Which one are you?
Do you ever notice that when you are at a party or with a group of co-workers, there are certain people whom others just seem to gravitate toward? Those are the "Yes People." Why do you and I want to be around those people? Because they exude positivity, they are pleasant to be around, and their outlook on their work and life is genuine.
And, that is key. "Yes People" are the real deal. They are confident, yet humble. They have great energy, yet are aware of their surroundings and the feelings of other people. They tackle problems with a great attitude, yet understand the enormity of the problem at hand.
When Richard and I interview prospective MGOs and other development professionals, this "yes attitude" is the first thing we look for. Why? Because in our experience, we know that "Yes People" are successful. Of course, experience and knowledge are important, but we've recommended people who have no background with major donors or fundraising because they have such a tremendous attitude and outlook. We know that whatever they don't have in experience or knowledge they will figure out how to get.
If you like baseball, tennis, golf, Gregorian chant, jazz, rock, good wine and deep conversation, then you’ll like to hang out with Jeff.
If you are passionate about fundraising, Jeff will inspire you to be a true “broker of love” for your donors, helping you bring together a donor’s desire to change the world and the world’s greatest needs. Jeff believes that if nonprofits truly want to grow and obtain more net revenue for their mission, it will come through creating, building and successfully managing major-gift programs. The Connections blog will give you inspiration and practical advice to help you succeed. Jeff has more than 25 years of nonprofit fundraising experience and is senior partner of the Veritus Group.