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How I raised $3,223 in 4 Days selling popcorn

 

My local sorority chapter collectively raised $301,340 selling popcorn. Our fundraising leaders coordinated the event through the Double Good company.  We are the largest fundraising group in Double Good history! 

So, how did we do it? 

Teamwork of course. Nothing significant is done alone. 

 As one of the leaders in the chapter, I wanted to support this fundraising effort, albeit initially, I could not fathom us raising that much money in four days.

Because I trusted the process, I simply did my part.

WHAT HAPPENED:

East Point/College Park Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. conducted a virtual popcorn fundraiser beginning at noon on Thursday, April 1, 2021 and ended at noon on Monday, April 5, 2021. Together we raised $301,340. Our chapter will receive a check from the Double Good company for half of the money we raised. We have projected the money to go towards scholarships for local students and other public service initiatives. 

Over 200 chapter members set up virtual pop up boutiques. Other members supported the overall effort by purchasing popcorn.

Our leaders presented the plan to the membership, shared their vision, provided technical training, presented a roadmap for completion and they provided incentives.

More importantly, they provided an opportunity for us to rally around three of our core principles; Sisterhood, Service and Scholarship. 

Before this opportunity and after this opportunity we, as an organization, focus on building healthy relationships with other members of our organization, providing community service within our local area and creating opportunities for others to advance towards their life, academic, and professional goals.

This is a powerful lesson for women leaders (and men as well). 

When presenting a project to your team start with the end in mind, then develop a solid communications plan. Consider the various objections you might encounter, then proceed to developing viable solutions to each of those objectives. 

Each member of our fundraising committee led by example. They each had a virtual popcorn boutique.

WHO LED THE EFFORT:

The fundraising committee selected a leader who has proven that she can get results in the past.

From my observation, she has the following skills:

Communication skills; written, verbal, presentation and public speaking

Interpersonal; assertiveness, inspiration, and persuasion 

Technology; Email, Microsoft suite, zoom and the Double Good app

Judgment: Vision, project management, strategic planning 

Character; honest, dependable, and a powerful work ethic

OBJECTIONS: 

One of the main reasons we were successful was because our leadership seemed to have considered the possible objections that may be raised by the participants and their potential network of buyers. 

Objection #1: Not familiar with a virtual boutique

One week prior to the event starting, the fundraising committee offered training to all of the chapter members. 

Objection #2: Not sure on what message to share with potential buyers

The leader posted sample messages each day. The participants were encouraged to tailor the message to their audience. 

Objection #3: Don't know a lot of people

The leader encouraged participants to post on social media, send text messages to family, friends, social and work colleagues

Objection #4: Encountering questions from potential buyers

The leader addressed each question quickly, sisterly and professionally

Objection #5: Don't want popcorn

The company has a donation only option on their site. 

Objection #6: Our dates fell on the Easter holiday

We pushed forward while respected the traditions associated with this holiday

VISION CASTING:

The most consequential reason we succeeded beyond our wildest dreams was because of our leaders engaged in "Vision Casting". 

  • First, the popcorn sales project lead provided evidence that other organizations had sold over $200,000 worth of popcorn with the Double Good company. 
  • On the first or second day of the four days of this fundraising effort, our Chapter President shared that she would like for us to achieve $200,000 in sales. 
  • Each night, the project lead would provide an inspiring update.
  • All of the ladies who had virtual boutiques had access to a chat within the Double Good app. We shared tips, techniques, goals, and encouragement, which provided much needed momentum throughout the four days of the fundraiser. 

As leaders, you want to be able to:

  • Know the vision; A vision statement guides the organization goals and helps to shape its future. A vision is a framework and helps the organization visualize what could be manifested.
  • See the vision; before sharing the vision, the leader should understand what motivates each team member. Some people are motivated by awards, recognition, career advancement, job security, or other things. Find out what motivates them and use that approach. 
  • Share the vision; your team needs direction via weekly meeting, daily conversations, performance evaluations, etc.

I was able to raise $3,223 in four days selling popcorn because my leaders shared a simple roadmap that began with vision casting. 

I presented the opportunity to my family, friends and social media network. Each morning I provided the link to my virtual popcorn store, provided an eye-catching incentive, addressed any objectives or issues and each evening I publicly thanked each individual who supported my store. I was consistent in sharing the information with my wonderful network and I focused my attention for four days. 

Imagine your next big project. Start with the end in mind. Develop a strategy. Address potential objections. Provide necessary training. Remain positive. Provide talking points. Engage in the overall process (roll up your sleeves). Communicate positively and effectively throughout the process. 

Have fun!

I'm rooting for you.

Angela, your life and leadership coach

P.S. You're invited to attend the book review and discussion of "Can't Hurt Me" by David Goggins on Wednesday, April 28, 2021 at 7 pm EST via Zoom

Get the reading guide for the Book Review and Discussion HERE

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Angela M. Odom is a life and leadership coach, founder of The Better U Project brand, podcast host, proud Army veteran and the author of BRONCO STRONG: A Memoir of the Last Deployed Personnel Services Battalion and a contributing author to the book, "Camouflaged Sisters: Leadership Through The Eyes of Senior Military Women Leaders". 

ONLINE: Website I Instagram I Facebook I LinkedIn I Twitter I You Tube

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