Purposeful Planning for Purposeful Giving

By |February 12th, 2018|

Purposeful giving is a better practice than simply responsive giving. Responsive giving occurs whenever someone responds to a giving request by actually giving money. This of course is why the majority of donors give – because someone asked them to give. And thus, they are simply responsive to the request. I rarely entertain donations to charities and/or people who have not actually asked me to give. Yes, I have given to both charities and people who never asked directly or indirectly, specifically or generically for me to give. But most people’s habit is to be responsive to their giving [...]

What Does More Money Mean To You?

By |January 25th, 2018|

When times are great and the money is flowing into your nonprofit, then by all means don’t spend more of it. Don’t get caught in the trap that you will always have more money and that it will continue to be that way in the future. Show the wisdom to cut back, not because you have to but because you want to do more on less. When nonprofits and for profit organizations can show both donors and shareholders respectively that they desire to do more on less, then they are usually headed for greatness. I’ve watched both nonprofits and [...]

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Bills Should Never Come as a Surprise

By |January 24th, 2018|

Bills should never be a surprise. Financial decisions maybe made today, but you’ll always pay for it later. And when the bills come due, you should never be shocked to remember what you did yesterday to incur such. Now life has a way of causing financial emergencies, but for those who have financial emergency savings accounts and other reserved funds that are outside of monthly operating budgets, then even life’s wild cards should not come as a financial surprise. I recently heard of an organization that was at least publicly telling others they were having financial hardships. And usually [...]

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Money, Fundraising & Leadership

By |January 23rd, 2018|

Money is often the main focus of organizations who claim not to be about money; i.e. nonprofits. Isn’t interesting how much time, focus, energy and money is applied at getting even more money within the world of nonprofits? I don’t think it is too much of a stretch to think that nonprofits may spend as much time and energy as for profit financial investment firms on raising more money. When a financial firm is concerned about always raising more money, then beware. After all, aren’t they really about making money grow through investments rather than always raising more money [...]

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“My Pleasure” – What a Joke!

By |January 21st, 2018|

My pleasure. Two words. These two words maybe the most inauthentic words in the English language. Every time I go to a Chick-fil-A I hear the God-awful phrase of my pleasure. Is it really the person’s pleasure to refill my drink from the soda fountain machine? After all, I know what it is like to refill my own drink at most any other fast food establishment and I never think much less feel or say, “my pleasure,” or “this is rather pleasurable.” And if you ever step inside a Ritz –Carlton hotel anywhere in the world and ask any [...]

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The LIFE Skills of Fundraising

By |January 20th, 2018|

Life skills are essential in fundraising well. First, every great development officer listens well. They listen well to their donor-investors. These are the investors who will drive your organization forward. Donor-investors are in a different leadership class than an annual automatic deduction donor, who simply sits backs and money is charged either each month from his or her credit card or flows from their bank draft into your account. Now this kind of passive donor, every nonprofit loves, because they don’t really have to do much once they’ve signed the donor up for this kind of passive participation. But [...]

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Momentum Fundraising

By |January 19th, 2018|

Momentum is key for the emotional success of any team. One clearly sees this in sports. And momentum is key for the real success of any team. It is the fuel and energy to not only keep going, but to keep going with joy and excitement. The same is true in the world of nonprofits. When a charity begins to lose momentum, they may keep going and even go strongly, but often their staff is not going forward with joy and excitement. When this occurs, involved donors will notice. You never want your involved donors to lose their own [...]

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Excellence Produces Excellence in Fundraising

By |January 18th, 2018|

Excellence in one’s nonprofit work, will produce excellence in fundraising. It is that simple. If you do a piss poor job, then you will most likely struggle to maintain a high level of funding. People like to give to excellence. Donors hate the thought of pouring their good money into toxic debt and toxic charitable organizations. Great leaders with excellent track records will attract great donors with excellent money. Success attracts success. Yes, you must tell your story and show your results and even show how your leadership has surpassed your own expectations. As Darwin might say, it really [...]

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Fundraising 2.0

By |January 17th, 2018|

If you ask for too little, then that maybe just what you get. If you ask for too much, then you may turn off your donor. Knowing your donors giving capacity and frequency is key to successful fundraising. Just because a donor may have one million in cash (i.e. giving capacity), that does not mean they will ever give any portion of that cash to charity. They may simply spend it on themselves or their family. But when donors show a track record of giving (i.e. giving frequency), then you may just have met the first two marks in [...]

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What Millennial Donors Want

By |January 14th, 2018|

How does your nonprofit measure the qualitative life change of the recipients you serve? The future of donors and especially Millennial donors do not care so much about quantitative measurements of old, but rather qualitative measurements. In other words, if your organization is a soup kitchen, then the old measurements would entail how many people it fed within a month or year, and how much money was raised to feed that amount of people. But the new form of measurement wants to examine how the lives of those people who partook the food, how their lives have been changed [...]

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