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November 16, 2018 Part Two of a Three-Part Blog Series – “Stop, Start, Keep”

This is the second in a three-part series of blogs titled “Stop, Start, Keep”. This method of analyzing a charity auction event came to me by way of a fellow fundraising auctioneer, Darron Meares. Darron is founder of Bowtie Benefit Auctions.

In the first blog in this series we helped you identify things you need to “stop” as they pertain to your charity auction event. Now let’s help identify what you need to “start” doing at your fundraising event.

As you did in the “stop” exercise, get your group together and brainstorm ideas. These may be things that caught your attention when you attended another nonprofit’s event. Or maybe one of your committee members or someone on your nonprofit staff has personal experience with something they suggest you begin doing. Possibly you had an issue with a system or process at your last event that is the catalyst for starting a new and different one at your next event. As an example, I mentioned in last week’s blog that one common issue, long lines at check-in-checkout, is often something our groups identify they want to “stop”. This is a great time to determine what you can do to start preventing those long lines – discuss the problem with the entire check-in/check-out team to determine where the issues lie. Maybe the addition of a few more volunteers would resolve the problem? Or maybe the entire process needs to be revamped. This might even be a good time to research event software that will speed the entire donation/attendee/auction process along, thus preventing the original issue of the long lines.

I encourage our clients to visit other fundraising events to see how that particular nonprofit’s event differs from theirs. This is a great way to find an activity or system that you would like to incorporate into your event.

You can also get feedback about fresh ideas from your professional fundraising auctioneer. I love to share what others are doing.

As I said in last week’s blog, I caution you not to implement too many changes at one time unless they are deemed necessary to the success of the event. When we work with new clients for the first time, we usually do not recommend making any more than two or three publicly observed changes each year. There is a balance to keeping things fresh versus overwhelming your guests with too many modifications that might result in negative feedback.

So, pull out that trusty flipchart and start brainstorming again, this time about things you can “start” doing at your next charity auction event. Remember, there are NO bad ideas in this exercise. The goal is to implement changes that will make your fundraising event better than ever.

Make every minute a revenue generating minute!

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