“But the committee is just so stuck in its ways…” We hear this over and over throughout the year so thought we would share with you our top 4 tips for getting your committee on board.
1. Don’t go in “cold”. Turning up to a committee meeting (especially the first one) and presenting your ideas with no prior discussion can unfortunately backfire. You may have found the perfect fundraising solution for your school or group but if your committee is “stuck in its ways” and hasn’t had time to absorb your idea, it may be sadly dismissed. How to overcome this? Casually chat to your fellow committee members before the meeting and where possible, enlist support. Showing samples always helps to get people on board too. If you haven’t yet been introduced, or don’t feel comfortable approaching the committee members, perhaps you have their email addresses and can send out a group email? Simply forwarding a website link can go a long way, and we are always happy to provide you with all sorts of handy information you can forward on too. A great starting point would be our answers to Frequently Asked Questions. Check them out here.
2. Do your homework. It’s no good presenting an idea and leaving it at that. Make sure you have a clear set of recommendations – show people you have thought things through and have come up with a plan to be reckoned with. Be prepared for criticism and questions though – a committee “struck in its ways” will often argue for the easiest option so make sure you have your cheat sheets ready! Anticipate the questions you may receive, know your profits and terms and conditions – if you can answer their questions and show them why “easiest” isn’t always best, you’re half way there!
3. Compromise. Instead of giving up when your ideas are shut down, try to meet in the middle. If the committee believes parents won’t be interested in your ideas or won’t co-operate, suggest using an opt-in or opt-out letter so that it’s the parents choosing the fundraiser, rather than the committee. Check out our letter templates here. You could also suggest a smaller scale drive if the consensus is that your initial idea is “too much work”. There are potentially many ways you could compromise to increase your fundraising success – don’t be afraid to explore them.
4. Lastly, believe in your ideas! Why do you like the products? Why are they the best option for your group? Ask yourself these questions and stick by your answers. If you are confident in what you are presenting, then chances are everyone else will be too.