Hello SOTGC community,
What’s your strategy for turning your passion into profits? Too often passion-istas give up before they get started. They have a passion for helping others, but they don’t have the right tools and strategies for increasing revenue to support their programs.
We can easily turn to the Internet for articles about raising dollars, but there are no real-world examples to show entrepreneurs and nonprofit leaders how to capture the power of the philanthropic spirit to fulfill their passion of serving the public.
It is really quite easy to captivate corporate sponsors when you develop your strategies right from the get-go. And it’s never too late to start. When you have a killer idea and are looking for funding to support your passion, we have an answer for you. “Everyone has ideas, most don’t do the work required to get the job done.“ (Mark Cuban, 2012). Too many passion-istas quit too early! Ladies and gentlemen it’s called hard work and smart work. They are interchangeable.
You could call it luck -I call it survival. When I was growing up I knew that hard work was a necessity to support my family. I would do everything from cleaning houses, grocery shopping, babysitting, ironing, and bathing the elderly to make money. At the age of 11 I had a working schedule. Today, I know that hard work still applies, and I also know that to become successful I had to add in a new principle: it’s called smart work.
Three tips to increase your business.
- Treat your customers like they own you – because they do.
Whether you are an entrepreneur or nonprofit organization, someone else owns you. They call the shots, they will tell you their needs. Be approachable, share your email address and listen. To become a great speaker, you need to become a great listener.
- Find your weakness before your competition does.
Stay ahead of your competition. It becomes a game of stick-a-bil-ity. If you are able to stick to your business long enough, you will put your competition out of business just by your sheer stick-a-bil-ity.
- The best capital is “sweat equity.”
Sweat Equity is your best chance for building your business. But lets not forget the ability to captivate corporate sponsors. Corporate sponsors are different than Angel Money investors who are looking for return on investment (ROI). Corporate sponsorship is a gift, a gift that becomes a win-win for both you and the sponsor. Sponsorships are not easy money; there is hard work involved.
Each day people are facing challenges. In Q4 of 2011, 49.2 percent of Americans received benefits from one or more government programs. This is according to data released by the US Census Bureau. These statistics led me to want to make a difference. I don’t want you to have to go through their challenges alone as I did. I made it my life’s mission to empower individuals to reach their goals and dreams. More importantly, to find the connectivity between corporations that have the dollars and organizations that need the dollars to provide the programs and services to those in need.
“Great entrepreneurs invest the time, no matter how many hours a day, to learn more about their industry and the business they want to start than any one else. They realize that ramen noodles and macaroni and cheese are the fuel they need because every other penny they get from working that night job is going to fund their business.” (Mark Cuban, 2012).
I know all too well about making those sacrifices. When I started Connie Pheiff Speaks, I had just lost my last job as CEO of a nonprofit organization because of a silly revitalization and economics of scale, so I was told. A job that I thought I would endure forever. Losing one household salary brought our family to our knees. Our dinner of eating out became chicken and rice for $2.29 … but it allowed me to remain focused on turning Connie Pheiff Speaks into a thriving business. Here we are seven years later and able to educate others on the importance of hard work, smart work, and the ability to turn your passion into profits and captivate corporate sponsors.
With more than 25 years of nonprofit management experience, Connie Pheiff has raised approximately $200 million for national social service organizations and business associations. Prior to leading her own company in September 2006, Ms. Pheiff held positions as the Chief Executive Officer for United Way, Girl Scouts of Penn’s Woods Council, Director of a local and United States Chamber of Commerce where she led fundraising enterprises. She holds a Master of Public Administration and Organizational Innovation with a minor in Speech Communication. Ms. Pheiff teaches online courses on sponsorships, philanthropy, and Corporate Social Responsibility.
If this post inspired you to help others or to support groups that you feel are worthy causes, pleaes @Tweet them with this post or share on Facebook to help spread the message.
Reference: Fell, J. (2012). Mark Cuban: What entrepreneurs need to know before starting a business. http://www.entrepreneur.com/blog/225357