It’s no surprise that we want to “fit in.” Everyone wants to fit in; that is with the exception of a few brave souls who take pride in their exceptionalism. Organizations are no different in this respect than individuals. There is perhaps no other group of organizations that are so focused upon being like their peers as nonprofit organizations. It is a sector that, sadly, is plagued with groupthink; a pathological fear of risk and difference.
And yet. . .there are a few that take another road (we know who they are!). They celebrate the fact that they are doing different things differently. These “weird” charities put themselves on the line and demonstrate bold outcomes. They embrace their investor-donors as true stockholders and owners—those that share in and are committed to the vision, whatever it is.
The reaction of their sister organizations is predictable. Just as in the politics of the schoolyard, the conformist bullies try to bring the exceptional ones down. Why? Because to the conformists, the world is a scarce place; a place where there is never enough.
To the organizations with bold dreams and committed investors, the world is a place with possibilities; with tremendous untapped potential. The results are in the pudding, so to speak. Take a look at the fundraising results of the conventional versus the “weird” and you’ll see.
Principle 2 of The Eight Principles of Sustainable Fundraising® is Begin at the Beginning™. Define first who you are and then your investors will know who they are.