Crossfit lessons for fundraisers

Crossfit and fundraising don’t naturally go together like — say — peanut butter and jelly. But they’ve got more in common than you might realize.

I’m part of both communities and here are three similarities that might give fundraisers some new perspective on our work.

(1) Crossfitters and fundraisers are both obsessive about metrics. Sometimes not the right ones. Crossfitters instinctually want to know how much we lift and how fast we go. Fundraisers want to know how much we raise. But what about metrics like nutrition and sleep quality? And what about metrics like retention and lifetime value? These metrics are actually what make champions champions.

(2) Crossfitters and fundraisers are both disciplined. But systems are the key to our success. Crossfitters have built in systems to keep us focused day in and day out. We use an app called Wodify to track everything we do. We go to class at a certain time each day. We have an expert coach programming our work outs. Fundraisers also need systems to stay disciplined. External calendars, timelines, metrics dashboards, CRMs. Creating systemic support is imperative to our success.

(3) We see the payoff. Crossfitters and fundraisers are some of the most goal-focused people I’ve ever met. When we do the work, we see the results. Period.

So even if Crossfit isn’t your bag, fundraising shares some key components. Who knows. Maybe next year, you’ll do the Murph Memorial Day workout with me.