Women aren’t harder to fundraise from, just different, in how they prefer to give. Change your narrative and your approach to engage them more effectively.
A book club could help you engage staff, leadership, and volunteers to grow women’s philanthropy by creating structured learning, an opportunity to evaluate current practices and share new ideas, and incentive to shift behaviors and strategies.
Large gifts from donors can transform an orchestra. But how to get there? Trine Sorensen, who serves on the boards of orchestras and other nonprofit arts groups, offers an insider’s perspective on the strategies that lead to principal gifts and features best practices from ALG.
Today’s speed of change will require leaders to find new ways to navigate this pace. My recent conversations with 12 VPs uncovered a shift in how they’re thinking about our work and its rapid evolution. As you enter planning season with your advancement team, keep the following six shifts in mind.
When we’re under pressure, it is normal to revert to what we’ve done successfully before. When a woman doesn’t respond as anticipated and, in fact, asks more questions, gives less than asked or doesn’t agree to be on a board, we turn and focus on those who do respond in the way we prefer. But we risk sub-optimizing what this woman might give us after she is satisfied with her due diligence.
Our best practices in American philanthropy were created with primarily one donor profile in mind: a white, straight man. It’s time to reexamine our approach and include more identities.
Regardless of scale of need, every organization will benefit from a thoughtful, inclusive consideration of the board’s collective leadership responsibility.
CFOs and CDOs should recognize the different demands of their jobs and the likelihood that they will have different orientations and personalities, and to see these as complementary strengths rather than as a reason for conflict.
In your work as a fundraiser, you may use the term “donor life cycle.” This model charts the path of a donor through several sequential phases of engagement and giving to causes they care about: first gift, occasional gifts, consistent annual gifts, major or stretch gifts, leadership role and accompanying giving, and finally, a planned gift. But because of their personal life stages, women’s “donor life cycles” are often not as linear as the simple model would suggest.