nonprofit management

Rich & Famous vs Poor & Unknown

By |November 22nd, 2017|

It doesn’t matter if you have a star studded power board for your nonprofit. I’ve watched nonprofit boards filled with celebrity members crash and burn. This is nothing bad against those in the public eye, but getting star power isn’t always the best route for nonprofit boards. And it doesn’t matter if you have multi-millionaire or even billionaire donors within your donor pool of financial supporters. I’ve watched extremely wealthy people do more harm to their charities without even realizing it. Just because someone has lots of money doesn’t mean they know how to give wisely or engage [...]

Do You Have the Right Philanthropic Advisors?

By |November 16th, 2017|

Nonprofit lawyers, philanthropic advisors, and financial nonprofit experts can be of great benefit on the legal and financial technical instruments available for everything from how to set-up a public charity, private foundation, donor advised fund, community foundation, or other types of tools like charitable remainder trusts, and limited liability partnerships for NGOs and other charitable entities. Some of them may even help you clarifying your mission and vision and values. All of this is important and needed especially when starting out. However, it is also needed to review such documents as by-laws, policies and procedures, grant-making policies and even [...]

4 Pillars of Every Philanthropic PLAN

By |November 15th, 2017|

Every philanthropic plan should consist of at least these four marks. First, a plan should begin with purpose. Without purpose, direction or some goal in mind, then you will not know where you are going, what you are doing or who you need on your team. Purpose is everything when it comes to strategic philanthropic planning. Second, every plan entails leadership. Once you know what your purpose is, then you can attract the right people who can implement your plan. Having the right leadership team is essential. Third, every philanthropic plan needs strategic action steps. Without action you have [...]

Titles are Meaningless!

By |November 12th, 2017|

Titles are meaningless. They are stupid too. Usually the more creative a title someone gives themselves the more insecure they really are as a person. If you ever go to a bank, everyone seems to be VP of something. Unless you’re the boss, the CEO, then most people don’t even care. I hope this isn’t hurting your feelings, but someone needs to speak the truth about job titles. Titles come and titles go. People get promoted, demoted and fired. If your identity is wrapped up in your title, then watch out; it could change quicker than you would ever [...]

The Big Splash! Donors & Their Dollars

By |November 8th, 2017|

There are all kinds of swimmers just like there are all kinds of donors. Big donors like to make a big splash at the swimming pool, but often their big splash causes your pool to actually lose water; i.e. lose money. And smaller donors often like to play with the water hose at the swimming pool, dripping a little bit of water in with a constant flow. As a charity, which kind of swimming pool person do you want as a donor? Do you want the small but steady giver or do you want the one who shows up [...]

Are You Killing Your Donors?

By |November 7th, 2017|

Donors die. Both literally and figuratively. For those who die literally, you may or may not receive a nice donation from their estate and/or private foundation. For those who die figuratively, then did you do or say something wrong that killed their heart and soul? Did your approach in asking them for money again, just be too much for them to handle? Most likely you’ll never know, because too many who engage the world of charity are charitable in all of their dealings. In other words, they are nice, kind, generous people with character and integrity. They don’t want [...]

Understanding Your Donors

By |November 5th, 2017|

Don’t confuse a donor’s encouragement or excitement for you to receive their money. Now it may seem like a logical conclusion, if an encourager loves the work your charity does, then they will become a faithful donor. This is not necessarily true. Often those who love what you do, will give and will give annually or even monthly. However, some donors will want to wait and see how things go, and sometimes, this takes a few years before they may write any substantial check. Other donors are already too committed financially in helping other charities, so when you stumble [...]

Authentic Donor Relations

By |November 4th, 2017|

Donors are people. People are individuals. Individuals are unique. Therefore, donors are unique. They are not all the same, so therefore, your charity should not treat them all the same. Some want the spotlight while others want to remain in the shadows. Some want to be publically acknowledged while others just prefer a handwritten thank you letter. But even classifying your donors into certain economic giving levels either based on a real giving history or based on your assumptions of their potential capacity to give, no one wants to be lumped together in certain domains. Even if your computer [...]

Donors Turning Their Anger Into Positive Impact

By |November 3rd, 2017|

If you’re a donor, then turn your anger into positive energy as you invest in the future. Too many philanthropists and faithful givers eventually get angry and burn out in some form or fashion. Either their desired outcomes do not come to fruition, or their money is mismanaged by arrogant nonprofit leaders, or maybe they just feel used and abused or not respected as if they will continue to give a charity more and more money year after year. As if the charity has become the entitled, spoiled step-child in their lives. When this occurs, donors get hurt. Their [...]

Risk has its Rewards!

By |November 2nd, 2017|

Risk has its rewards. Boom or bust as the saying often goes. But when it comes to creating positive life transforming philanthropic impact, you must raise the bar to reap greater rewards for others. Yes, I’m not talking about rewards for yourself, but for others. Isn’t this what philanthropic leadership is all about. People’s lives are at stake and usually those lives have no hope without you stepping out to take a risk to serve them. Serving others maybe one of the biggest risks you’ll ever take as a philanthropic leader. Most anyone can write a check to charity, [...]