Sunday, December 20, 2009

Message from the Captain (#6)

Ahoy Mateys! ‘Tis your captain speaking once again, Mentor Captain Art that is!

Old time sailors say “any port in a storm”, and we sure had a storm this weekend, didn’t we? It was time to batten the hatches and drop anchor in a safe port, just ride out the storm. I think that’s what we all did. Except of course, the cycle team, who put chains on their bikes and hit the road at 6:30 AM yesterday, right, Susan?

The next two weeks will probably be fairly quiet with Team in Training. Please remind your mentees to let the coaches know if they won’t be at training the day after Christmas or the day after New Years. That is really important.

Other than that, people are probably too wrapped up in the holiday season to respond to a lot of fundraising activities. I know I get bombarded this time of year by requests for donations. Given it is the last chance to make a tax deductible donation for 2009, it would be good to at least send out an update to their email list. It is a good time for participants to remind potential donors of what they are doing, and their progress. And at the same time, why not remind them that their donation is fully tax deductible in 2009, even if put on a credit card by December 31 and not paid until 2010?

The other things participants might want to be working on over the holidays is getting donations for the silent auction, and planning fundraising activities for the New Year. In particular, I would strongly encourage the latter. This is the time to plan for the big push in 2010 that will get them to their goal. What have they done so far? What has worked? What hasn’t worked? Are there things that they have been thinking of trying but haven’t yet? Do they have specific activities lined up? Are there businesses they want to approach about fundraisers or donations? How much more do they have to raise before recommitment and how much does that translate to each week? What is the plan to raise that much each week? And I would ask the same two questions for the rest of the season – how much each week will they have to raise to hit their minimum? If you have mentees that are not raising enough to stay on pace, you might want to remind them that every week that goes by, it means raising that much more on average for the remaining weeks.

If you have the time in this busy time of year, offer to meet with your mentees to help them plan. The goal will be to start off 2010 with a firm plan for completing fundraising, rather than starting to think about all of this after New Years. It is a time of year where it is very easy to put all this aside, which means essentially losing two weeks of prime fundraising and planning time.

That is about it from the Captain’s Chair this week. Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas, or a Happy Holiday of your choice. And of course, Happy belated Chanukah wishes as well. Let me know if you need help with anything.

Cap’n Art

No comments: