The Art of Relationships

Some expressions still have traction after a couple of hundred years, case in point: the old English aphorism of “Penny wise and pound foolish.” It’s applicable to a trend I’m seeing in today’s nonprofits of eliminating development staff and replacing it with consultants.

Certainly there are aspects of fundraising work that can be done just as well (and sometimes even better) by consultants. Grantwriting is one of those things. There is so much art and science that goes into good grantwriting, that hiring that expertise on Read more

It’s All Relative

The Urban Institute recently came out with the results of its assessment of donor retention using 2011-2012 data.  The conclusion?  Nonprofits are losing donors at a rate that does not allow them to keep pace:  for every 100 new and recovered donors gained, 105 were lost between 2011 and 2012; the year before the gain was 100 to a loss of 107.  This, according to the study, is a marked contrast with the years prior to the recession when there was a net positive year- Read more

Handwriting on the Wall

It is time that nonprofits lost their sense of entitlement.  Listen up:  you aren’t owed anything just because you are a nonprofit.

Sense of entitlement you are asking? How’s that work?  Let me count the ways!

Frequently, I will hear expressions of anger when a nonprofit doesn’t get the funding it had sought.  The anger isn’t at the organization, perhaps for writing a poor proposal or not following funding guidelines or having that prerequisite meeting with the program officer.  Rather, the anger is towards the funder with Read more