For as long as I can remember, the term WIFM has been an essential part of training for anyone in the sales, fundraising and other related fields. If you're not familiar, WIFM is an acronym for (W)hat's in (I)t (F)or (M)e. In other words, if you're selling or promoting something i.e. a product, service or even a donation to your favorite charity, you should put yourself in the place of your customer/donor. Most importantly, as you're making your case, you should be thinking just that. What's in it for that individual. What benefit do they receive? How does it serve them?
Easy examples of the above come to mind. If you're suggesting a portfolio of stocks to an investment client - as I used to many years ago - you wouldn't attract them with the stocks. Rather, the attraction or the WIFM was the benefit of a happy retirement or funding a child's education. As a fundraiser, you'd steer clear of talking about how big an endowment could become because of a donor's gift. Instead , you'd focus on why your donor will feel an intrinsic sense of joy at having supported better education, ending homelessness or hunger - you get the picture.
As important as WIFM is, I wanted to look at something different today. I'll call it WIFY or What's in It For You. In other words, what's in it for you, the individual that's selling, fundraising or developing new clients? I'd even argue that this may be even more important than WIFM. If you don't have - or don't know - your WIFY, it will be extremely hard to be successful in your efforts.
Your WIFY is your purpose in doing what you do. It's why you get up in the morning. It's why you focus on the mastery of your craft. It's how you got to be doing what you're doing in the first place. If you work for a nonprofit, there's a good chance, this looks and feels like your personal connection to the work. If its coaching, its a profound love of serving individuals and helping them be their best selves. There's no one right description here. As one of my favorite coaches once told me, if it's true for you, then it's true for you.
In my experience, when a professional knows this, it ultimately becomes one of the most powerful parts of the case for working with them. It comes through with both subtlety and clarity in their sense of service and it makes their offering ever more attractive. If you can't fully and clearly define this, I'd challenge you to set aside time till you can clearly articulate it. It's well worth the effort and the exploration.