Raising major gifts

For social service organizations

Today’s guest post is from my good friend and colleague, Karen Erren. As a career nonprofit executive and fundraising leader, Karen has spent more than 20 years building, growing, and leading social service organizations. She’s exactly the right person to share some valuable insights with us about raising major gifts from donors to local social service […]

7 #Nonprofit Blog Posts You Shouldn’t Miss

If you’re like the dozens of other fundraisers I know, chances are you’re pretty busy these days. But you still want to be learning and sharpening your skills too. Here’s a quick roundup of 7 of my most popular posts from the last 30 days. These posts cover employee engagement, strategic planning, donor retention, online […]

This #fundraising mistake could cost you 7-figures

I’ve seen something interesting lately. It’s come up five times in the last three months in discussions with nonprofits about their major gift programs. What I’m seeing is a change in the way gifts at certain dollar levels are being counted by nonprofits. Let me give you an example… Jane Smith is a consistent donor […]

Is it ever ok NOT to retain donors?

Maybe you saw this headline in The Chronicle of Philanthropy last Friday: Charities Lost 103 Donors For Every 100 Donors They Gained in 2014, Says Study. Nonprofits are right to focus on donor retention. It is significantly cheaper to retain a donor than it is to acquire a new one. I think it’s equally valuable […]

The essence of strategy is choosing what not to do

Stop. Keep. Start.

Harvard Business School professor Michael Porter coined the phrase, The essence of strategy is choosing what not to do.  I was reminded of this recently when a friend who is a Chief Development Officer shared with me that she and her team are struggling to make their major gift program work. This one surprised me because it seems […]

Does Your Nonprofit Have an R&D Budget?

Many of the world’s most innovative products were created as a result of dedicated corporate research and development efforts. Products like the iPhone, the space shuttle, pacemakers, stealth paint, microwave popcorn, Antiretroviral drug therapies, Post-It’s, 3-D ultrasound technology, etc., were all developed out of bold vision, a willingness to embrace risk and invest in research […]