I don't think mistakes are only made by fundraisers or those of us in non-profit development. Yet I do think that the more we make as fundraisers the stronger we become, the more knowledgeable we become, and the more successful our fundraising efforts are.
It's not easy when confronted with a mistake. Whether it's around your style of leadership, a fundraising campaign, a special event, an interaction with a staff member or board member. I guess this list could go on and on.
I definitely learn from my mistakes. That's the whole point. If I can't learn from them I am pretty much doomed. If I can't figure out what was going on or what happened, or even care to take the time to look at all of that, I'm doomed.
If I am afraid to take risks or try something new, success is not going to happen.
I have to constantly be open to learning, to the feedback of others, and to be taking those risks.
Fundraising/development is ever-changing in our world. The way we build relationships, or even how we think of donor and partner relationships, is different than it was just five years ago. Direct mail is changing and how we look at special events is changing. And then there are those things we don't know until we know, especially if you are new to your development team.
Learn from your mistakes. Take risks. Be donor-centered. Rock it with your team. Honor them. Remember that those doing the amazing, life-changing work for your agency cannot do it without your successes. They and those your agency serves are counting on you.
Have an awesome day!