How to Overcome Income Procrastination

How to Overcome Income Procrastination

A New Way to Evaluate Your To-Do List

The last thing Rose wanted to do was procrastinate about developing income at the nonprofit she led. Yet, she found herself doing just that. At the end of too many days, she realized she had done too little to grow her income. In part, it was because income development requires a series of disciplined steps, each having little urgency. Rose needed a system to keep income development front and center. I helped her add a simple step to prioritize the nonprofit’s income as she prioritized her tasks. You can use it too.

Before she left work each day, Rose already set her agenda for the next day, prioritizing the urgent over the important. Next to each task on her to-do list, she made two notations:

  • 1, 2, or 3 for urgent, with 1 being most urgent, and
  • A, B, or C for importance, with A being most important.

The simple technique she added was to add a third notation:

  • $, ¢, 0 for income, with $ providing the most potential income long-term.

Now her daily task list looks like this:

  • Call Doris Donor 3, A, $
  • Complete staff evaluations 1, A, 0
  • Update webpage, 2, B, ¢

By evaluating for income and prioritizing it, Rose calls Ms. Donor first, even though staff evaluations are equally important and more urgent. By doing $ tasks first, Rose develops more income. She also finds that many income development tasks take a few minutes and provide her peace of mind all day.

Evaluating your to-do list for long-term income potential allows you to quickly identify income-generating activities, create focus, and overcome your procrastination. Add a third notation to your time planning toolbox.

Karen Eber Davis

Karen Eber Davis Consulting guides executive directors and CEOs to generate the resources, boards, and support they need to make remarkable progress on their missions. As the award-winning thought-leader, advisor, and founding principal of Karen Eber Davis Consulting, Karen helps nonprofit leaders get answers, generate revenue, and grow their mission. Davis is known for her innovation and practicality based on her work with or visits to over 1,000 nonprofit organizations and her experience leading board and team events. She is the author of 7 Nonprofit Income Streams and Let's Raise Nonprofit Millions Together.