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Customer Success Manager at Blackbaud Canada

Girls' weekend in Wakefield Quebec with some of my oldest and dearest friendsWhen I’m in need of some inspiration to revitalize my work day, I turn to books. Over the summer, I do a lot of reading, mulling over projects and ideas for the year. I also read a lot at the cottage. That’s me—to the right—on a girls’ weekend in Wakefield Quebec with some of my oldest and dearest friends. That weekend I brought along three books (I am also an ambitious reader!). Here’s what I am reading, and why! 1 The Art of Relevance by Nina Simon

ask muscleFundraising asks happen behind closed doors, in private.  In my Major Gift Mastery courses,  Module 4 is the section where we role play to exercise our "ask muscles." Here's some key takeaways from my last Major Gifts Mastery "ask" discussion. Which ones resonate the most with you? Add them in the comments section below and let's open up the doors, and learn from each other's experiences "making the ask"

Do you know what you're raising money for? Seems like a simple question, but if you ask different people at your organization, you might not get the same answer. How can you raise money if you don't know which projects or programs you're raising money for? Getting yourself a set of APPROVED funding priorities at your shop will help you  - the busy not-for-profit professional - prioritize your work. Watch this video to learn how to avoid "Puttin' on the tutu." Learn how you can raise more money by having clear commitment on what you're raising money for.
Find out more about my Fundraising Fundamentals course.

Fundraisers are the GLUE that holds our departments together. We are the facilitators, we are the opportunity providers, we are the people connectors.

Our positive attitude is quite possibly our single greatest asset (besides our keen ability to listen!)

But when you're starting to feel like you're the lone wolf in your department, when leadership starts to treat the fundraising department like their own personal ATM machine, when you're struggling to explain to your boss(es) that you can't just ask for a gift on the first visit with a new contact, you've got to push back - gently - and lean into your role as Chief Visionary Officer at your organization.

This week's blog is a guest post by Delphine Haslé, CFRE. It's one thing to talk about donor walls, but it's an entirely different journey to take it from inception to a successful conclusion. Let me share with you my experience at The Perley and Rideau Veterans' Health Centre Foundation. [caption id="attachment_1833" align="aligncenter" width="448"]Donor Recognition Wall Before - traditional donor recognition wall.[/caption]

1. Dream big, Think outside of the box

“I know I am supposed to connect with people, but I just don’t know how.” 49 Ways to Engage your communityI hear that from my clients a LOT. How do you build an authentic relationship with someone so you can “bring them closer” to the organization….when you’ve just met them? Fundraising gets a bad rap (in my opinion) when we try to “jump” over logical relationship steps. That’s the scenario where you’ve just been introduced to someone, and then in the next breath you’re asking them for a 5 figure gift to the organization. Nope. You can’t fall in love on a first date. So here it is! A list of 49 Ways to Bring People Closer to your organization.

What do vikings, pirates and sponsors have in common?I met these two beauties in London, Ontario at my daughter's fall ringette tournament. What the heck? What's with the viking hats? There were TONS of parents walking around the arena with these fashionista helmets.

This, my fundraising friends, is a FABULOUS example of sponsorship ACTIVATION.

The London Ringette teams are sponsored by Big Viking Games, a technology company located in the London area. Parents wear these helmets to get noticed, and provide some extra visibility for their sponsors.

Well. I'd say it's working pretty darn well. Wouldn't you like to have a group of keeners out there in the community celebrating your sponsor's brand?