My sister — the clever one in the family — offers a somewhat Taoist thought about the fundraising enterprise, a thought that perhaps applies to the general problem of getting people to agree to things:
KEEP SILENT AFTER THE ASK! This may be the hardest thing about major-gifts fundraising—-not what to say, but when to say nothing. People find silence uncomfortable and they will say anything to fill it—-even ‘yes.’
Footnote More on wei wu-wei (action without action, or effortless effort) here.