Updated: Jun 26
by Jack Teodore
Anyone who has worked in a non-profit or startup before will know that obtaining funding is difficult at the best of times. Even the most experienced and charismatic of directors can crash and burn if they go in underprepared. With the right fundraising and sales techniques, however, you will be able to ensure that your pitch resonates with the highest-level corporate decision-makers to secure the funding you desire. But how do you find the right fundraising and sales techniques? Just ask Lori Zoss Kraska, Founder and Chief Principal of Growth Owl, and author of “The Boardroom Playbook: A Not So Ordinary Guide to Corporate Funding for Your Purpose Driven Organization.”
Lori holds an MBA in Systems Management and has more than 22 years of experience in revenue generation management, corporate sponsorship support, corporate cause marketing, fundraising, corporate social responsibility, non-profit consulting, executive sales management, training, and marketing strategy roles – you name it, and she’s probably done it! Her reputation for quickly establishing pathways to exceed revenue/fundraising goals, build high-performance teams, build relationships, and outpace expectations is well-earned. Lori attained the distinguished certification of Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE), the world’s only accredited certification for philanthropic fundraising professionals, by CFRE International in 2021. This certification is accredited by the American National Standards Institute.
Lori established Growth Owl, LLC in 2018 to serve non-profits, associations, and other purpose-driven organizations to better position themselves when generating sponsorship dollars and resources. They provide a number of services, from direct representation and online/onsite training to top talent recruitment, c-suite coaching and feasibility studies. Lori wants to help even more people succeed in their fundraising endeavors, which is why she’s put pen to paper to write this book.
When asked about her new book, “The Boardroom Playbook,” Lori says that she never planned for it to be your typical business book. “It’s a deep dive playbook into the X’s and O’s of finding corporate funding through the alignment of your mind, your messaging and your motion.”
It will help readers develop and maintain a positive mindset that is attractive to corporate funders, identify and tackle “periwinkle zombies” (a term she uses to describe any people or thoughts that seek to derail your fundraising success), understand the nuances of the corporate support landscape, provide research and engagement strategies that will help set you apart from other fundraisers, and prepare you for that big proposal or presentation (to name a few). Above all else, Lori wants to encourage her readers to laugh, think and just show up for themselves and their passions.
Lori also discusses in “The Boardroom Playbook” practical and effective tips for researching prospects, writing brief yet effective proposals, and using vital persuasive techniques that build connections quickly with funding and sponsorship decision-makers. Additionally, she makes a case for the importance of brevity when developing introductory communications via email, voicemail and in person. “We live in a world of millisecond notifications, 15-second pre-roll ads, and compacted social media videos. We’ve become trained to be receptive to short yet meaningful communication. It’s essential that fundraisers and sponsorship sales professionals focus on creating a brief message that connects their mission and goals with that of the potential funder or sponsor. When first reaching out, you just want to get them interested enough for a meeting or another conversation. Make the case for the connection first, and more detail will come later.”
Whether you’re new to fundraising or you’re a seasoned professional, Lori’s playbook can help you succeed in ways that you never thought possible. “The Boardroom Playbook” is now available to purchase on Amazon, as either an ebook or a paperwork version. Learn more about Lori by visiting her socials and check out the many advisement, training and mentoring services offered through Growth Owl, LLC’s website.
“The Boardroom Playbook” is a valuable resource for any non-profits and purpose-driven organizations looking to secure corporate funding. With more than 22 years of experience in revenue generation management and fundraising, as well as the distinction of being a Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE), Lori is well-equipped to guide readers through the process of finding corporate funding. The book covers a range of topics, including developing a positive mindset, understanding the corporate support landscape, conducting research and engaging with potential funders, and preparing for proposal or presentation pitches. Whether you are new to fundraising or an experienced professional, “The Boardroom Playbook” can help you achieve success in securing corporate funding.