Years ago when my best friend and I worked at The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society we coined the term Septober. For us, there wasn’t a weekend in September & October that we weren’t working – except for the Jewish Holidays; which provided a much needed break. It was a crazy two month blitz of bank nights, tents, boxes, helium tanks and the actual events.

Once Septober ended and while our events were fresh on our minds it was time to see how we did. We went into full analysis mode – we looked at everything. This was actually and is still one of my favorite activities. That’s why I started Peer to Peer Boot Camp. My goal was to provide fellow fundraisers with an intense regime to help you identify growth opportunities and hopefully solve some challenges you might have encountered along the way.

Anyone who knows me knows I’m a football fanatic. Let me rephrase that; I’m a Ravens fanatic! During football season, I not only watch the games, but my TV is permanently tuned to NFL Network. There’s one word you hear football players use over and over again. When asked why they didn’t win, the answer is always “we didn’t execute.” When asked how are going to win this week, the answer is always “we’re going to execute.” Are you noticing a trend here?

In prep for Boot Camp, spend some time reflecting on this year’s fundraising programs. How well did you execute your plan? Rate yourself, activities you lead and your leadership if you manage staff. So far 2013 has been an up and down for my champion Ravens and their bye week has come at the perfect time. This week while other teams are preparing for their opponents my team is looking inward. The Ravens are in self scouting mode… asking themselves what do we need to be better? What improvements to we need to make to be a playoff team?

Self scouting or reflecting on our own performance, actions and activities is something that’s missing in our world. We analyze numbers, look at team performance, look at participant performance – let’s add a new group in the analysis mix: ourselves.

On November 5th Boot Camp begins with a session all about data. We’ll look at the numbers and uncover opportunities for growth. Day 2 takes attendees on a marketing and messaging journey; my goal with this session to help you craft messages that lead to action. Event 360’s Meghan Dankovich will be your trainer for Day 3. She’ll tackle relationship building and why it’s a key to success, growth, sustainability and longevity of your event.

Week one is followed by product focused sessions to help execute your plan with TeamRaiser or Friends Asking Friends. Our peer to peer fundraising products experts will be on hand to make sure you’re familiar with all tools you can use to increase your program’s performance, revenue and participation. Be sure to register for this can’t miss sessions.

As you’re getting ready for Boot Camp, marinate on this concept of execution and self scouting. Reflect on your performance in 2013. We’ve all had those moments when you wish you could have done something differently; gosh I had one last week. Let’s learn from those moments, make different choices and be better next time.

See you at Boot Camp!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Amy Braiterman, principal strategy consultant at Blackbaud, supports customers with their peer-to-peer fundraising events with a process she refers to as “data-driven strategy.” Amy’s data driven strategy analyzes how effective event participants are using online fundraising tools and takes those results to develop an event fundraising plan. Prior to joining Blackbaud, Amy earned her fundraising stripes managing events for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Alzheimer’s Association and Share Our Strength. She shares her fundraising know how here on npENGAGE, by hosting educational webinars and speaking at customer conferences

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