January 2021

Wishing You a Better/New Year

plus new board training packages, three of my guest posts, and the next Jerry Panas recording

Dear [First Name],

Good riddance to 2020. Have we ever been happier to welcome in a new year?

Throughout 2020 we had to adjust our expectations downward again and again. I, for one, got tired of constantly saying to myself "it could be worse," when I could barely even see my family or friends. Yes, I was grateful for Zoom (it could have been worse). Yes, I was grateful to be well as that certainly could have been much worse.

There's always a "worse" scenario, but for our dear nonprofit world it's been one for the ages.

Here's to fundraising – which isn't easy during the best of times – being easier than it was lin 2020.

And here's to being able to be back in person with our donors before 2021 is out. There's nothing like it.

Use the Asking Styles Lens for More Effective Fundraising

read my three guest posts to learn how!

What's Your Board's Leadership Style?
An excerpt from my guest post on Bob Tiede's blog:

Having worked with boards for decades and now training boards using my company’s iconic Asking Styles, I thought it would be interesting to study board leadership through the Asking Styles lens. We all know the management style of your board chair greatly impacts the working of the board, but what exactly is that impact?

Serving as a board chair requires a good deal of time and talent. Being a good leader means keeping your eye on the prize, delegating appropriately, creating unity, and much more. It requires a wide range of skills.

Every leader has strengths and weaknesses. No one has it all. The best leaders are self-aware and surround themselves with people whose skill sets complement theirs. Your board chair’s Asking Style will give you a sense of their strengths and challenges…

Using Asking Styles to Train Your Board
An excerpt from my guest post on Andy Robinson's blog:

For most nonprofits, board training is a challenge. And no wonder! The team meets infrequently — and can’t meet in person during the pandemic. Resources may be scarce. Furthermore, board members have different preferences for how they learn. Good news: Board training is one challenge you can definitely overcome.

Enter the Asking Styles! The Styles were developed to help board members feel more comfortable in their fundraising roles by valuing what everyone brings to the table. Over the last ten years, Asking Styles has evolved into a tool you can use for board training, cue up rich discussions about governance, and create a stronger team spirit…

Strengthen Campaign Leadership and Planning Through the Asking Styles Lens
An excerpt from my guest post on the Capital Campaign Toolkit blog:

Every leader has strengths and weaknesses. No one has it all. Your campaign chair’s Asking Style will give you a sense of their strengths and challenges.

Think of any current, proposed, or recent campaign chairs at your organization. Can you take a guess as to their Asking Style? If you’re considering campaign chairs, does one or more of these sets of characteristics seem most important for your chairs given your organization’s dynamics, the campaign project, or other determinants?

Review this list of characteristics common to the four Asking Styles. Think about the combination of characteristics that will serve your campaign well…

Train Your Board to Fundraise…So They Can Do It Right

new board training packages are now available!

It’s more important than ever for board members to work with staff to develop resources for your organization. And they can and will do it, but only with training and only if asked to do smart, strategic fundraising.

Asking them to fundraise without training will only make them push back or do it and feel anxious and inadequate. Asking them to hit up everyone they know stinks for them and won’t get you anywhere in the long run. I want to help prepare your board for the upcoming year and Spring fundraising season. That's why I've decided to offer new board training packages for any size board, no matter where you are in the board training process.

Fundraising 101 for Board Members
1 hour to understand basic best practices in giving and fundraising. Join board members from numerous other organizations in an interactive training webinar. Each board member chooses from one of three identical live sessions, which are recorded for those who can’t make any of the three. Includes worksheet and numerous bonus materials.

Asking Styles Training for Boards
35 minutes to learn one’s Asking Style plus time to discuss as a group. Each board member watches the recorded training for their Style and completes a worksheet. Package includes customized, branded landing page with your logo and a photo of your choice, training videos, and instructions for three Asking Styles exercises to do virtually or in person.

Group Rate Asking Matters Memberships
1-2 Hours a month on one’s own to learn over time, at a discounted rate when you sign up your whole board. Two 30-minute webinars monthly, opportunities to ask me questions and have them answered live, become of an online asking community and access our extensive resource library.

Customized Group Training
4-5 Hours as a Group to Dig in Deep. Interactive remote learning for your whole board (note: can be split in two webinar sessions), customized to address where your board is at today. Includes lifetime Asking Matters membership for everyone so they can continue learning over time.

Where are you at? How can I help you help your board?

Any questions, reach out to me at brian@askingmatters.com

The Jerry and Brian Tapes: Words of Wisdom

Recorded April 8th, 2018

Who sooner to learn words of widsom from than Jerry Panas.

How about “donors will forget what you said, and what you did, but never forget how you made them feel”? Or the B.O.Y. Rule. Any ideas what B.O.Y. stands for?!

Here's to a better year and to successful fundraising,


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