Time for Spring Cleanup!
Most of us in the U.S. have survived the annual “spring ahead,” when we lose an hour of our lives — or actually just bank it to collect again come fall — but seemingly drag around for days as a result of this annual ritual.
But it is one sign, at least, that spring is coming. Some of you still “shoveling your climate,” as a former boss used to say, may not be quite as convinced as I am of the truth of that claim, but deep down (maybe under a pile of snow that’s been in the front yard since 2013), you know it’s true.
One of the rituals of spring has long been spring cleaning. In fact, growing up in Chicago and attending the Chicago Public Schools, we had a week off every April that was called “Clean Up Week.” Granted, most of us used it to go someplace where sunshine really existed, but the thought was there.
As fundraisers, now is a good time to do some spring cleanup. We’re right smack in the middle of the year-end surge and the summer slump. Our creativity may be buried in slush, and our passion seems to be coated in ice. So roll up your sleeves, and let’s get cleaning!
All those direct-mail packages, e-news ideas, event promotional pieces, donor-recognition advertisements — in short, the things that you set aside to inspire you on a day when your creativity is at an all-time low — need to be sorted and purged.
The best part about intentionally going through them is you’ll retrieve some ideas that have been buried and possibly ignite some great ideas for your next fundraising project. But don’t hesitate to toss or recycle anything that doesn’t look quite as exciting as it did back when you set it aside.
Pamela Barden is an independent fundraising consultant focused on direct response. You can read more of her fundraising columns here.