08 Oct Amateur versus Professional Fundraiser
Studying for my CFRE exam has forced me to reflect on the differences between amateur fundraisers, and professional fundraisers. There is a place for everyone – and we need both – but it’s worth enumerating the not-so-subtle differences between the two. This list will help many small to mid-size charities clarify fundraising motivations to the board. Many Board members consider themselves fundraisers. The question is: are they amateurs, or professionals?
|Knows he/she needs money
|Knows WHAT the organization needs money for in order to better serve its community
|Is looking for money to “fill a box” on their excel budget for the year
|Is looking for relationships with people who will help an organization fulfill its mission while generating a long term stream of income.
|Sees handwritten thank you notes as a waste of time
|Knows that anything he/she can do to personalize the relationship with donors is valuable and worth doing
|Looks at fundraising as it relates to this budget year
|Looks at fundraising as part of a bigger picture over multiple years
|Looks to an Annual Appeal letter to raise money
|Looks to an Annual Appeal letter to raise money, continue a conversation with a donor, and inform a donor about how the organization has invested their past donations (i.e. thank yous!)
|Cares about the “cost” of an annual appeal.
|Cares about how “cost-effective” an annual appeal is
|Would consider building some relationships with potential new volunteers for his/her community, but never finds time to do so.
|Allocates time for meeting with people and getting to know important members in the community with the long term strategic goal of bringing them closer to the organization
|Cares only about how much money a special event raises
|Cares about what a special event raises, alongside HOW this event can educate current/future donors about the organization, and bring people “closer’ to the organization
|Will go rogue and raise money with (or without) the Board
|Works with, and through the Board to reach out into the community to raise money for the organization’s programs
|Knows that a donor has capacity to give before asking for a major gift
|Knows a donor’s willingness, capacity, and philanthropic interests and passions in relation to your organization before asking for a major gift
|Gets frustrated when programming people won’t give him the stories he/she wants
|Makes time to get to know the impact of the organization’s programming first-hand so that they have their own stories to share.
|Thinks planning is for people who like to push around paper
|Knows that building a fundraising plan is the first step to success, and makes time to ask for – and obtain – “buy-in” for the fundraising plan from the whole team
Fundraising Mastermind sessions start Nov 4th.