You have heard it said that in order to be a successful Executive Director, you need to spend fifty percent of your time doing your work and the other fifty percent of your time soliciting donors to support it.
But I say unto you:
In order to be a successful Executive Director, you need to spend fifty percent of your time doing your work and the other fifty percent of your time coaching champions how to imitate you comprehensively in relation to the cause you both love.
The standard of success here is Ephesians 4:11-13, which is the Transformational Giving rallying cry. The imitation approach is splattered across the New Testament, and we’ve written about it recently here and here.
But the question of the hour is:
Do you expect that your champions can do greater things for the cause than you have?
If you don’t–if you sense that God sends you supporters and not champions–then you’ll constantly be working against the grain of Transformational Giving. You’ll invent activities for them to do that simulate the ‘real’ ministry with which you’ve been entrusted.
But if you do believe that God sends you champions whom He fully intends to do greater things than He has entrusted and equipped you to do, then Transformational Giving will help you answer the question, ‘How?’
Transformational Giving is a comprehensive discipleship approach that seeks to enable Christlike growth in the champion in relation to the cause you both share. That’s something far greater than coming up with involvement opportunities. That’s training them:
- How you think about the cause
- How you yourself grew to make the impact you are now having
- How you give to impact the cause in each dimension of your personal and corporate assets
- How you join with others to make an impact exponentially greater than you could make on your own
Jesus’ disciples followed him along dusty roads and watched every aspect of his personal life for three years. That is likely far, far in excess of what even your most bright eyed and bushy tailed champion can extend to you, and yet it points to the fact that what Jesus has in mind in us coaching champions is something different in kind than occasional phone calls and visits designed to grease the solicitation skids.
Want to get in the right framework for Transformational Giving?
Ask yourself this question:
If you and your staff were prohibited from doing ministry, fundraising, and anything related to your cause, and you could only work through your organization’s champions, would the result be ‘greater things’?
If not, why not? (This is intended as a reflection question, not a rhetorical one, by the way…)
And how would things change in our organization if we approached our coaching of champions with this mindset?