Category Archives: Fundraising How To’s

Smart Giving Q&A: As a donor, how do you think about your own philanthropy?

I tend to think about giving rather broadly. It includes gifts to family, friends and … Read More

Five Tips for Fundraising Leaders

Over the years, through personal experience and observation of good and not so good practices, Howard has learned a few things about being effective and comfortable in the role of a fundraising leader. Here are his top five tips. Read More

Fundraising How To: Wealth and Giving

Here are six ways that one donor and fundraiser (yes, Howard) thinks about wealth and the implications for getting to giving.

1. Wealth is an instrument of choice. People who are wealthy have lots of opportunities to give. Just because they’re rich doesn’t mean that they will give to you. How can you differentiate yourself from other causes, especially similar ones? Read More

How-to: A “cheat sheet” for getting to giving

When it comes to raising significant gifts, you’re usually not talking about a day trip; you’re talking about a lengthy journey. You choose your travel companions, and plan your itinerary. Then, off you go!

To help you on your way, here’s a checklist summarizing the key steps involved: engage a prospect, make a proposal, formalize the gift, and nurture the relationship. Read More

How-to: Questions for fundraising leadership

Why do it and how can you do it better? In our experience, fundraising can be an extremely rewarding – yes, even fun! – experience. So, how can you do it better? Making sure you can answer the “four big questions” is essential, but so are donor-centered and entrepreneurial perspective, and attention to fundraising leadership. Read More

How to Seal the Deal

It’s not a sexy topic, but the nitty-gritty of formalizing gift agreements is important. As the saying goes: “Nothing’s done ‘til it’s done, and even then it’s not done.” Don’t assume you have a deal until the prospect has actually signed the contract and the check clears. Only then does she officially become a “donor.” Read More

How to: Engage Your Prospect

How can you get a sense of whether there is a match between your organization’s mission and your prospect’s interests that could inspire a significant gift? Here are six questions you need to be able to answer. Read More

How To: Fundraising Planning

“Failing to plan is planning to fail.” That adage, with some variations, is attributed to both Winston Churchill and Benjamin Franklin. General Eisenhower added: “Plans are nothing, planning is everything.” We agree that planning really is more about the process than the output. Read More

Fundraising How To: Support Your Fundraisers

During the Harvard Business School capital campaign, Howard earned – and wore proudly – the nickname “Professor Road Warrior,” logging approximately 1,000 one-on-one meetings, and speaking to more than 5,000 people in group settings on behalf of the effort. He is quick to point out, however, that he had lots of help, from a talented and tireless Development team as well as alumni, faculty, and HBS leadership. Read More

Fundraising how to: Make the most of your volunteers

The good news, from the 2013 Giving USA report, is that volunteerism is on the rise. That has sparked some very good ideas about to harness that energy. I will take the opportunity to get on my bandwagon about the importance of fundraising partnerships – including volunteers – and dispel a common myth. Read More