Tag: donor communications

78 Irrefutable Canons of Fundraising – in detail

Iam often asked how I chose fundraising as a career. Actually, I didn’t choose fundraising. Fundraising chose me.

Here’s the brief version. I was slated for medical school. I needed some money for tuition. I was in Pittsburgh when I took a job at the YMCA.

The Y put me in charge of fundraising and their campaign. What courage they exhibited. What confidence. What lunacy! I knew nothing about fundraising.

My Top Eleven and Three-Quarters Bits of Advice for Winning at Donor Communications – Part I

1. Why Eleven and Three-Quarters? Be a little less predictable. “10 Top Tips” is predictable. “11 Top Tips” is a little less predictable, but still pretty obvious. I ripped this idea off, as most of you immediately recognized, from Harry Potter’s Track Nine and Three-Quarters at King’s Cross Station. Steal well. And often. But don’t steal from failures. Which means you’ll have to learn… Read more »

At this latest fundraising conference, I at last began to wonder . . . 
”What is abuse?”


Witness one form of abuse unique to fundraising . . . You get the training. You learn, say, how and why donor-centered communications raise lots more money. But your boss doesn’t like the way donor-centered communications sound … so your boss says no.

Why? Because your boss doesn’t know any better. Because your boss trusts her own uninformed hunches, instincts, opinions more than she or he trusts you and the training you’ve just received. 

And you need the job . . .