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This isn’t about being normal. Sorry, normal just won’t work. We need to be obsessed with the donor experience. We need to think about it all the time. Doing anything else will just not work.

Being average is not helpful. Your staff need to look at you and scratch their heads in disbelief at how obsessed you are. Your peers need to be afraid of you when you discover average or bad donor experiences. They need think twice about not caring. You need to be a madman. This is about passion. The digital nonprofit executive needs to care and be passionate about astounding donor experiences.

Now you’re thinking, being obsessed isn’t usually a good thing. It can get you in trouble. Could it get you fired? This all sounds very risky. What evidence is there that it will work?

Now these are all good questions. Is there evidence being obsessed will pay off? Is this about belief or facts? Usually the only use of proof is to even have a shot at creating belief. Start with belief and then move to gathering the facts. If you don’t believe it, what difference will the facts make?

How much time do we spend understanding our donors, listening to them, and doing everything we can to improve the experience they are having with us and our programs/services? Seriously, are you obsessed? Does your calendar reflect this? How many donors did you talk with this last week? What were their biggest challenges?

It is not an understatement to say we need to be obsessed. If we aren’t, who else will be? The answer is that if we aren’t obsessed, our team will not be. If we aren’t obsessed, the culture will not change. There are a lot of ways to spend your time and for you to be focused on. Everyone is watching. What will you do?

I think a better question may be, what will be the results if I am not obsessed with the donor experience? You probably already know the answer to that question. The real risk is to not focus on the results that will come from average or bad donor experiences. In your gut, you know this is true. This is about the best use of your time and the amazing results that your passion and energy will bring the donor experience.

If your priority should be the donor experience then we will begin to envision what it will take to organize and execute around them as a priority. It has huge implications to what you do every day. It makes a difference to your budgets. How many of your resources can you devote to it? How many of your staff can you assign to it? How much time will you give it on your agendas? Do your staff think you are obsessed with it? Do your donors think you are obsessed with it?

 Dare to obsess. Dare to focus. Dare to change how you spend your time.