Leadership: What outcomes do you want?

It’s easy to confuse “being busy” with “impact.” That’s why every act of leadership should begin by answering this question: What outcome do you want out of this act? Identifying clear outcomes clarifies whether you are being successful or not. Outcomes for this process can be objective and easy to measure. Or they can be… Read more

Baby it’s warm outside: Summertime tips to maximize year-end giving

Christmas carols in July? Please, no. Building snowmen instead of sand castles at the beach? Nah. Wooly sweaters at the swimming hole? Absolutely not. The cold, short days of winter seem far away, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be thinking about year-end during the summer months. Fundraisers are like people in the fashion industry.… Read more

The Cadence Trap

As most email fundraisers have discovered, increasing the frequency of emails almost always raises more money. In the short run. And if you are chasing monthly targets, you have almost certainly indulged in a couple, or six, more emails as the month drew to a close. But when we do that, here are the questions… Read more

Getting a story: What questions to ask

Interviewing is an art. Just listen to Ira, Terry, Brian and other storytellers and journalists who tell stories for a living. Fundraisers also tell stories for a living. But we sometimes stumble on what questions to ask. I’m leading a storytelling training in DC today and I put together this list of questions that follows the… Read more