Equip your fundraising teams with quantifiable research, new insights from your own data, and a strategic plan to adapt to the unique ways that women give.
New research shows women are the drivers of their families’ philanthropic decisions. Women give more than men—and when they give, they give differently. And yet, most nonprofits and educational institutions are still using "tried and true" fundraising practices that either alienate women or gain only minimal support from them. Better results are possible when fundraising methods adapt to new donor realities.
Led by Kathleen Loehr, one of the country's leading experts on women's philanthropy, ALG's consulting services equip fundraising teams with quantifiable research and new insights on the unique ways that women give. We then coach teams to assess their own donor database and practices and help them reshape their strategies to strengthen and increase their support from women.
Aspen Leadership Group focuses its leader-to-leader philanthropic culture consulting on three areas:
- Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Advancement
- Women’s Philanthropy
- Philanthropic Partnership and Principal Gifts
All three require organization-wide commitment to changes in established behaviors and approaches. All three present opportunities for transformational rather than simply incremental growth in engagement and fundraising. And they are interdependent: success in any one of these areas supports and is enhanced by success in the others.
Our Approach: Moving leaders through Awareness to Assessment to Aspiration and Action.
On-site workshop or workshops for the advancement team, advancement leaders, academic/programmatic leaders, administrative leaders, and/or board members, coupled with one-on-one or small-group meetings with key leaders and decision makers.
Outcomes: Shared knowledge and understanding of the national landscape, relevant research, and implications for effective engagement and fundraising work, together with shared commitment to change and growth.
On-site, video, and phone consultation, to discover and explore organizational strengths; values; false assumptions and unconscious behaviors that impede progress; gaps; potential; and readiness for change and growth.
Outcomes: A written report addressing strengths, opportunities, and recommended behavioral adaptations and resource allocation, customized to your team and organization.
Aspiration and Action:
On-site, video, phone consultation, and workshops, to develop and implement aspirational, intentional, and measurable plans for improvement.
Outcomes: A written plan followed by guided implementation.
- Understanding of the evolution of women’s philanthropy and women’s philanthropic capacity
- National trends in women’s giving and women’s philanthropic preferences
- Recognition of how certain demographics and psychographics influence women, including how generational differences and family considerations impact women’s giving
- Awareness of gender differences in communication styles and appropriate adjustments
- Understanding of how to work with women donors to clarify their philanthropic values, vision, and voice
- Access to research, practical cases, and transformative results from successful women’s philanthropy initiatives, as well as awareness of how to use donor education programs to engage women donors
- Landscape review of peer organizations’ women’s philanthropy programs
- Examination of the role of women in the history of your own organization
- Analysis of how women are currently giving to your organization, and what is resonating with them
- Facilitation of a diverse task force of volunteers and staff to gather input on the potential for growing women’s philanthropy at your organization
- Design and analysis of survey instruments and focus groups to gather input from women stakeholders
- Identification of key obstacles at play in your organization
- Assessment of characteristics of the most successful women’s philanthropy programs and how your organization currently performs against these ideal behaviors and approaches
- Assistance to discern your compelling aspirational goals for women’s philanthropy and design your unique strategy.
- Hands-on workshop with teams to design the specific adaptations for your organization to achieve your strategy.
- Training for team members in applying current knowledge about women’s philanthropy and driving appropriate change to achieve your goals in all areas of the donor lifecycle, from identification, to interest-building, to involvement, to investment discussions, to stewardship.
- Coaching for leaders and Advancement teams on implementing desired behavioral adaptations and tracking metrics.
- Coaching for leaders on creating and tailoring principal gift strategies for high-net-worth women philanthropists and their families.
- Assistance in establishing and supporting a women’s philanthropy steering committee prepared to implement and sustain effective work in this area.
We will also provide ongoing consultation as you drive change and growth in the area of women’s philanthropy, through on-site, video, phone, and email interaction as required and desired.
Please contact Kathleen Loehr, kathleenloehr@
Our women’s philanthropy practice is led by Kathleen Loehr, a nationally recognized leader in women’s philanthropy. Her expertise results from her work across 20 years with universities and nonprofits to more deeply engage women donors. Kathleen is Chair of the Advisory Council for the Women’s Philanthropy Institute at Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. She is the author of Gender Matters: A Guide to Growing Women’s Philanthropy, and a frequent conference presenter, keynote speaker, and webinar host on the topic of adapting our fundraising practices to meet diverse donors as they prefer. Read her full bio.
Her recent presentations include:
- Gender Matters: A Practical Approach to Grow Women’s Philanthropy
What if we knew that our engrained fundraising “best practices” gain only minimal support from women? Quantifiable research shows how women give differently, and our practices and behaviors need to adapt to engage women donors as they prefer. Participants will learn about the research on how women give. They will also discover how to discern what current practices may unconsciously get in the way of connecting with women, what their own data may be telling them, and what their women stakeholders care about. Finally, they leave with a practical process to tailor new approaches.
- Discover First To Grow Women’s Philanthropy
We’ll focus on what you know, and what you want to learn more about. First, we’ll discuss data – what to look for in your CRM. How are your women donors currently supporting you? Do you see gaps and/or opportunities? Second, we’ll discuss the importance of the voice of your women stakeholders to help design how you might grow resources. What are ways to ask them questions (survey, via a newsletter, focus group?) and what are some questions you might ask. Our goal is to listen and learn. If we jump into action too soon, we’ll likely not address our unconscious biases and current practices that may not resonate with women.
- From Knowledge to Action: Getting Started
Based on what you’ve discovered about how your women donors are giving now and might give in the future to your institution, you are ready to start designing new approaches to meet women as they prefer. Incremental adaptation is best – we are talking about designing new behaviors and practicing them well. What will you focus on first to adapt? What came from your discovery that seems to be a priority to pay attention to? Also, where is your institution: Are you going into a campaign? Do you need to broaden your base of annual support? Grow major or principal gifts? Your data and your institutional priorities will help you design your first adaptations.