When it comes to being a successful fundraising manager, the solid educational background and the infinite enthusiasm are just one half of the deal.


To help you out, in the following article, we rounded up the most essential traits of the outstanding fundraising director.

Fancy to know what are they? Then, read on.


Flawless integrity

To start, it is required for the prosperous fundraising manager to develop an awareness of likely ethical conflicts and dilemmas.

And, although integrity perhaps seems to be an innate trait, it should be developed by truly understanding ethics, morals and donors’ rights in the field you are operating.

When it comes to fundraising, you need to initially get familiar and support the  “Standards of Professional Practice” and “AFP Code of Ethics” – the documents that will grant directions about what is moral and ethical in the field of fundraising.


Flexible and open to change

Every fundraising director who desires to be successful needs to go out, try new things, exchange ideas and be willing to change.

Remember, innovation is not just a new, state-of-the-art technology but also to constantly improve everything you do related to your organization.


According to Tony Elischer (101fundraising, a crowdblog on fundraising):

“One of my long term mantras has been to use windows, not mirrors, a simple way of reminding myself that truly to move forward, be in line with the market place and to have any hope of innovating, you have to focus on the outside world and not the internal world of an organisation.”


Good listener

Once you dive into the fundraising ocean, you would realize that active listening is vital for long-term relationship building.

And even more, cultivating an ability to listen for what the potential investor’s interests are which is even more important than being able to effectively explain your project’s concept.

As Professor Adrian Sargeant states:

“The next big thing in fundraising is thinking about how we make our donors feel when we communicate with them. The goal is not money: the goal is being respectful and developing relationships. Money follows.”


Great storyteller

At the end of the day, there is a really great idea behind your project which could fail to get fundraising if it is not told in the most accurate way possible.

So being a successful fundraising manager includes the trait of being a great storyteller who keeps it simple and doesn’t share everything at once.


Besides, there is a relation between being a good listener and storyteller as if you actively listen to the investors, you would know which stories resonate and which are best used for which purpose.


 Long-term visionary

Last but not least, having a clear long-term vision of what the organization is aiming to achieve, is another crucial trait that every fundraiser should develop.

Sure there are twists and turns, but it is much easier to stay in control if you build a deep-rooted vision and communicate it with the whole team, instead of constantly be plugging leaks without any result.


To wrap it up, there is no single trait which is most important when it comes to the success of a fundraising director. The secret is to do everything mentioned above at the same time mixed with your unique super-powers (skills).