One of the areas many nonprofit organizations miss when having an event is goal setting. Whether it be their 20th annual event or their 1st, many organizations “goals” are to just have an event. But what does that mean? You can just have an event and ‘hope’ that you come out ahead or you can have an event that exceeds your growth goals.
Many times, in consulting meetings I ask for historical numbers: gross revenue, net revenue, event P&L etc. and this information is not known or readily available. Sometimes I receive a loose version in excel but it often leads to asking even more questions to decipher. The point is, if you don’t track your numbers you don’t’ know where you’re headed. As an organization, tracking your event numbers should be just as important as putting out your annual report.
Setting Goals and Objectives
Once you have a clear understanding of your events financial information, take the time to brainstorm your ultimate goals and objectives. Knowing your revenue and expenses, these goals can include things like lowering event expenses in specific categories, or increasing ticket sales or cost of tickets, perhaps it is identifying the right attendees for your event and being strategic about your ask. Many big picture goals include ‘make more money’ but if you don’t know what your financial identifiers are it is nearly impossible to ‘make more money’ on a whim.
Strategy vs. Luck
Our clients that do well on their fundraising events are not just lucky. We’ve formulated a plan and strategy that attracts the right people, brings in the right amount of sponsorships, and we engage each attendee to give the best they can at the event.
Be sure to analyze your goal strategies so that you can meet and exceed them and not just hope that it all works out in the end…. That is a bad strategy!
To setting goals,
Danielle Snelson | CEO | firstname.lastname@example.org