A few years ago, something hit those of us in the nonprofit sector right between the eyes. It had been there all along but no one had quite put their finger on it. We acknowledged that we were running on fumes based on an ideological mindset that scarcity somehow made us nobler practitioners. Our eyes were opened to the Overhead Myth, and we were forced to take a hard look at the impact of years of shortchanging ourselves.
That same year, CompassPoint and the Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Fund released Underdeveloped: A National Study of Challenges Facing Nonprofit Fundraising. In this groundbreaking study, they put into words what we’d all been grumbling about for years but couldn’t quite describe. We were caught in a vicious cycle where the lack of conditions for success was creating painfully high turnover and, with it, unsustainable relationships between constituents and our organizations. The study forced us to ask ourselves: How can we possibly drive momentum if we can’t even develop organizational relationships?
Clearly, we had to shift our mindset. We got real about the need for a culture that fosters awareness for philanthropy’s role inside and outside our walls. In short, we realized we need to build a stronger culture of philanthropy. Underdeveloped identifies this as “a set of organizational values and practices that support and nurture development within a nonprofit organization.” And this culture cannot be achieved if the only people pushing for it are fundraisers—the very people whose time and resources are already stretched thin.
While much has been written in the last few years about what a culture of philanthropy is and how it can be achieved, we wanted to expand the conversation to include the whole organization. From leadership to marketing, programs to the board and everything in between, fostering this shift in every area can mean the difference between running on fumes and embracing abundance. Within these pages, you’ll hear from leaders who have successfully charted a course for each of these areas to play a role. We hope their perspectives will serve as a catalyst to help you engage your entire organization in the journey toward a true culture of philanthropy.
In this fundraising eBook, you’ll learn from these 10 experts:
- Pamela Barden, CFRE, Consultant, PJ Barden Inc.
- Jann Schultz, Senior Director of Individual Giving, Project HOPE
- Cheryl Contee, CEO, Fission Strategy, and Co-Founder, Attentive.ly
- Katrina VanHuss, CEO, Turnkey
- Beth Kanter, Master Trainer, Author, and Blogger, Beth’s Blog
- Anne Wallestad, CEO, BoardSource
- Russell Pomeranz, President & CEO, Claverack Advisory Group
- Wendy Watson-Hallowell, The Belief Coach, Belief Works
- Andrea McManus, CFRE, Partner, ViTreo
- Linda Wood, Senior Director, Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Fund
Fundraising Matters will empower your whole organization to chart a course for fundraising success.