What type of relationship does your enterprise have with its customers, donors, volunteers, staff, board, and community? Is it authentic and built on trust? Do you attract people who are committed to your purpose and vision? Do you take everyone who raises their hand or are you selective?
Consider the following images that are associated with appeals for funding.
What reaction does this image bring forward for you? Some international hunger organizations prefer this or more graphic models.
Or this sign, does it make you feel inspired? How about guilty? What story do you tell yourself when you face this type of requests for assistance?
Does your reaction change when the message is reframed? Does a new perspective or context alter your perception?
Does your reaction change when the image focuses on hope and opportunity? Heifer International leads with pictures like the one above.
Perhaps this approach (via Simon Sinek) reverses the classic approach to the homeless person sign. The message on this sign actually generated $40 in two hours for a homeless person in New York City when the traditional approach brought in $20 a day.
A quick way to create a temporary relationship is to lead with guilt or fear. It tends to make us uncomfortable. We are willing to take immediate action to alleviate the discomfort. In a fundraising environment an easy way to standout in a crowded field of appeals is to shock.
What if you build a relationship on a foundation of inspiration. What if you are selective about who you attract to your cause. Would it change the quality of your interactions if people were considering their purpose in the context of your cause?
What type of relationships is your cause cultivating?