Last week Judith and I delivered a one day workshop to the management team of a local charity. The aim of the session was to look at ways in which the organisation can maximise opportunties in an ever changing landscape. It’s not an easy time to be running a charity with funding streams under threat and new ways of working being the norm rather than the exception.
The focus for the day was on relationship management and raising the profile of the organisation. It was a busy and lively day with a group of very committed and energetic managers.
During the course of the day the ideas kept coming thick and fast, some left field and all exciting- a few were a bit too ‘creative’ but that’s what makes life interesting!. Most ideas were very specific to the charity whilst the others had a broader appeal, these included:
Idea number 1 getting your existing customers to sell on your behalf
Who are your best advocates? Your existing customers- they buy from you because they think you’re great. The charity is going to hold an event in an existing clients premises and invite potential customers to attend with an offer that is too tempting for them to miss
Idea number 2- exploring opportunities with a creative twist
Are the gatekeepers who you usually approach they only gatekeepers? For the charity this meant schools. When discussing gate keepers at schools the focus was on teachers but schools are made up of more than just teachers. What about the parents and in particular the parents associations? Approaching the associations has had a dramatic and immediate effect resulting in opportunities never previously developed.
Idea number 3- why don’t you buy from us?
We struggled to come up with why the charity had not be successful in a particular area. The charity had researched an issue, developed a product, conducted market research but the product had not sold. We couldn’t think of why but surely someone must know? Ask the customer- why didn’t you buy? What is wrong with our offer. Ask for help
We delivered our brief and we delivered more. We came up with new ideas and solutions by taking a fresh approach and asking the right questions.
It’s not rocket science but good solid ideas that make a difference.