Have you ever considered how your unique personality affects your fundraising approach?


In the 1920s, a professor at Columbia University began studying human behavior. Students of his work later turned his research into the DISC profile.

The test doesn’t measure personality as much as behavior, but it’s become one of the most popular assessments to help people understand how they relate to others in the workplace, at home and in leadership.

Even without taking the assessment, you can likely tell whether you’re wired for dominance, influence, steadiness or conscientiousness.

These different personality traits can play a big role in your fundraising approach.  Let us break it down for you:


Type D Fundraisers

People with dominant traits are decisive, type-A and have high self-confidence. They are driven by results and want to be in control of the situation.

Fundraising Strengths:

  • If you’re a dominant personality, you’re probably great at casting a big vision and presenting the cause in a compelling way. When you meet with potential donors, you focus on the mission, vision and the cause and often leave out the details.


Areas to Improve:

  • Slow down, be personable and don’t rush the close. I know it’s hard to imagine, but everyone isn’t like you!


Type I Fundraisers

Influencers are the life of the party and aren’t afraid to be the center of attention. They are enthusiastic and talkative and they can be impulsive and emotional.

Fundraising Strengths:

  • If you’re a Type-I, you’ll keep your fundraising presentations fun and tell a lot of stories. You want people to like you and your ministry.


Areas to Improve:

  • Because it’s so important for people to feel warmth, you might exaggerate claims in order to build rapport.  Or you might skip key facts and details so you can be more inspiring. Remember, everyone isn’t like you and you need to balance your presentation with facts.


Type S Fundraisers

Type-S people are steady, stable, reliable and dependable. They make great team members because they are loyal. Unity and teamwork are really important and they want everyone to get along. But they also know how to stick to a project and see it through. That’s the dependability in them!

Fundraising Strengths:

  • In fundraising conversations, Type-S people will be patient and let people process information at their own pace.  They know how to read a room and won’t push too hard.


Areas to Improve:

  • Because you want people to feel comfortable, you may be overly agreeable.  You might need to be more direct at times. You may need to gear up for it, but don’t be afraid to make the ask.


Type C Fundraisers

If you’re a Type-C, you’re cautious, precise and detail oriented. You think analytically and make decisions with plenty of research and information to back them up. You’re excellent with details and know how to solve problems.

Fundraising Strengths:

  • In fundraising, you often back up your presentation with real facts and figures. You want people to know exactly how their donations are being used and are patient with questions.


Areas to Improve:

  • Your personality can lead you to control a conversation and you might come across as inflexible. Work hard to inspire, not just inform, recognizing everyone doesn’t always care about the same details as you. Tell a story in addition to that statistic.


So how are you wired to behave?  And how does that help or hurt you when it comes to fundraising?

While fundraising is critical to the success of your ministry, it isn’t the only area you have to focus on. Ministry Ventures loves coaching leaders in a holistic process through the Five Best Practices of faith based non-profit leadership.

Now Enrolling: Executive Group Coaching Colorado Springs


Michael Johnson

Coach & Regional Consultant


ph. 719-345-2489