5 Ways to Effectively Manage a Host Committee
One of the best ways to have a successful fundraising event is to set up an effective host committee. Key word: Effective! Your committee members are the leadership and life-force of your event. These are the people who can invite important guests to the event and who will lend much-needed help to the overall planning, setup, and organization.
And even if your host committee only consists of two people, that’s okay! The number of leaders doesn’t matter—the key to success is all in how you manage them.
So, to help you host a wildly successful fundraising event, we pulled together the following tips on how to effectively manage a host committee.
Give specific instructions and due dates to each member
Accountability and direction go a long way, especially with sponsorship outreach and silent auction solicitations. In these cases, you’ll want to assign members a specific dollar amount or number of sponsors to find. A sample email to send a member might look like this:
“Kim, please find five beauty-related silent auction items and seven restaurant gift certificates of $100 value or more by May 1st.”
This email provides the member with very specific goals and a due date. Even if the member doesn’t achieve it, the guidance will keep everyone on the same page and know what they need to work towards.
Ask for help when needed
In addition to giving clear instructions, you should also be direct with specific people you need or want to step up. Send individual emails, texts or phone calls that simply request help. Here’s a sample message:
“We really need [task] and I thought you would be the perfect person to help me. Can you please secure [specific requirements]?”
When you directly ask your committee members for help, more often than not, they’ll be happy to pitch in.
Send reminders for meetings at least two weeks in advance. Also, send periodic reminders leading up to the meeting.
And don’t be disappointed if half of your committee (or even less) attend your meetings. Remember, being a part of the host committee is a volunteer position. People have other priorities, and sometimes those priorities must come first. Give some leeway but try your best to hold your members accountable. For those that cannot attend the meeting follow up with them individually. They will appreciate the individual touch of keeping them engaged.
Be clear on your vision
Set goals early on and make your host committee aware of them. Continue to promote how their hard work and dedication will benefit the organization.
Also, be sure to praise specific members’ achievements to the entire committee. This will encourage everyone to continue working towards the big picture.
It’s all too easy to share frustration with others, especially on a large committee. Remember, you’re the leader. Committee members will often adopt their leader’s attitude, so if you’re frustrated, outwardly negative, or are venting to members about who isn’t pulling their weight, then discontent will start to spread.
Not only should you focus on positive communication and interactions, but remind yourself to smile. A simple smile can boost your own happiness and create a positive and upbeat atmosphere for everyone. Committee members might not remember the exact details of the event process but they will remember if they were happy to be there, happy to serve on the committee again next year.
If you have more questions about how to plan a successful fundraising event, let us know. We’re here to assist with all your planning needs.