Choose your words carefully

Words.  There is much spoken, written, and recorded about the use of words.  The ones you choose may be right, wrong, motivational, discouraging, instructional or otherwise.  Words are written as lyrics, poems, stories and more but there’s one common denominator. ... Read More

Business donations not low-hanging fruit

Not-for-profits will typically target businesses first when trying to raise funds for an event or project. That may be advantageous if seeking a major sponsorship. However, I tell groups business donations are not the donations on which they need to depend or be seeking on a long-term basis. ... Read More

Eroding trust in nonprofits: Pay the PRICE

Trust. Not-for-profit leaders have joined the crescendo of recent talk about having it, losing it, and building it. The latest numbers show trust declines in the NFP sector where individuals and organizations are investing their hard-earned funds, seeking positive change. ... Read More

Address a data breach with a six-pack

Most everyone has received one of those dreaded notices that delivers ominous news.  “Your personal information has been compromised.”  No matter how they say it, our thoughts race to the implications and how quickly we can act to mitigate the damage. ... Read More

Five considerations for donor recognition

Many donors will say they aren’t motivated by recognition, but despite their claim their gifts can be influenced by it.  I’ve worked in various forms of fundraising for a couple of decades and have experienced nearly every form of recognition. ... Read More

Five reasons nonprofits don’t retain donors

Donor retention should be high on everyone’s list.  After all, it costs much more to acquire a new donor than it does to retain an existing one. Yet, The Fundraising Effectiveness Project cites that the average retention rate is just under 44%.  So what are nonprofit organizations doing wrong?... Read More

Remember when the customer was right?

“The customer is always right.” That mantra was instilled in me early on at my first job in high school.  It was in small-business retail which emphasized service and the importance of our customers. ... Read More

How Healthy is Your Nonprofit?

It’s time for your next nonprofit board meeting.  Are you feeling anticipation? Excited?  Anxious? Dreadful? Hopeful?  I’ve felt all of those, sometimes more deeply than others.  It accompanied board service as a volunteer and running a nonprofit as paid staff for decades. ... Read More

These Five Pivotal Moments Change Your Future

Time management.  There are probably more ideas for approaching this behemoth than there are minutes in a year, 525,600.  Sorry to trigger that song for the “Rent” fans out there.  However, there are pivotal moments that form a foundation for getting more things done effectively and efficiently, whether you are carrying out multiple tasks at home, work for a nonprofit, or in the corporate world.... Read More

Five Pitfalls Tripping Up Nonprofits

Working in various capacities with nonprofits from small to large for a few decades I’ve seen a great deal.  Surprisingly, “the more things have changed the more they’ve stayed the same,” a quote from 1849 attributed to French writer, Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr. ... Read More