3+3+3 = How to Get People Excited About Your Nonprofit

As we gear up for the 2020 Board Summit, I’m talking with lots of Mission Capital’s member organizations about how they can most effectively recruit new people to get excited about and involved with their nonprofit.

When we meet someone new in a networking situation (like at Board Summit on June 4!) most of us are usually ready with a quick description of what our organization does and why – the good ‘ol “elevator pitch”. But what happens if, after you exit the elevator, your new friend wants to learn more? Wouldn’t it be great to be ready with some truly engaging things to say?

Many times, nonprofit leaders – especially board members – struggle to know what to say when asked to go into detail about their organization. After all, most of us are working on a wide range of initiatives and it can be tough to know what to highlight or how to get someone more involved.  

That’s why we encourage nonprofit board and staff to work together to create a “3 + 3 + 3”. The 3s stand for:

Up to 3 recent organizational accomplishments: demonstrate your mission and give evidence.
Up to 3 exciting things coming up: show a vision for the future and build enthusiasm.
Up to 3 ways to get involved: share specific ways in which people can participate.

Ideally, your list of accomplishments, plans and ways to get involved will make your nonprofit’s various target audiences very excited. For example, if you run summer camps for kids, your 3+3+3 speaking points would focus on your program offerings to appeal to the families you meet, and then would highlight sponsorship opportunities in case you meet a business owner.

It’s helpful to create your 3+3+3 through a brainstorming conversation involving both the board and staff (especially the communications and development teams if you have them). This way you are sure to focus everyone on the same issues when speaking in the community, pointing all new friends in the same, team-approved direction.

Are you a nonprofit leader who wants to help your organization find more, passionate leaders to serve on your board? Apply for the Board Summit before the deadline on March 13!

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