So Stephen Gerrard thinks that by telling the England team how painful not qualifying is, he is going to motivate them to win? Well that worked well didn't it? Sports Psychologists know (or ought to) that to improve your winning edge you visualize, not failure but success! Did Johnny Wilkinson line up his penalty kicks thinking, " this one might veer left?" Not in a month of Sundays. He visualized the ball sailing between the posts. Over and over again. Similarly penalty takers are taught to see the ball in the back of the net, not sailing over the crossbar.
The England team were ranked 8th but conspicously under achieved, at least in part, because they were filled with the fear of failure instead of being given the licence to play to their strengths and visualize the taste of success.
So how do we apply these lessons to fundraising? Simples. Give your fundraisers the license to fail, don't make taking risks a blame game. Allow them to take chances (carefully calculated of course). Encourage an atmosphere that celebrates success and learns from failure. We generally learn much more from something going wrong, provided that we allow people to analyse and reflect in a non-judgemental environment.
Try it sometime and see the difference in performance.