A Cause Greater
Topics: nonprofit leadership, Fundraising, Giving, relationship building, a cause greater, development, lon swartzentruber, donor development, volunteers, volunteer engagement, advancement, nonprofits
Rethinking a Board Member’s Role in Building Authentic Donor Relationships
As you know, board members, key volunteers and senior staff play an important role in fulfilling the mission of your organization. However, even the most successful development offices can forget to utilize these people in their efforts to build relationships with donors.
Through the next several blogs we’ll look at some simple examples of how this can work and why these team members can be an integral part of helping you build successful and lasting donor relationships.
This year through A Cause Greater, I’ve talked a great deal about the importance of initiating, developing and sustaining authentic donor relationships. I hope you’ve found value in this approach to donor cultivation and stewardship, and have been inspired to try some new things in your work.
A friend recently told me that he wanted to transition from his role of CEO of an organization to a new role: Founder. I’ve known him for 15 years, and that desire intrigued me. “What do you hope to achieve through your transition?” I asked.
An old friend called one day and asked if I could help her with a capital campaign.
My first question was this: What did she hope to achieve through the campaign?
As you know from last month’s post on understanding process consulting, a process consultant explores a series of open-ended questions with a client to help them more clearly understand the situation that needs to be addressed.
So, how might this approach develop a strategic planning process that transforms an organization? Let’s explore an example.
People often ask me,
“What is process consulting?”
The term can sound intimidating,
but at its core, process consulting
is about helping a person or an
organization understand what will
truly help them, and then assisting
them in taking action to achieve it.
Nothing more, nothing less.
I am pleased to share with you that
I’ve earned the designation of
Associate Certified Coach from the
Over the past several months we’ve been talking about relationships, in particular how to initiate, develop, and sustain relationships with donors.
Just like any relationship, keeping donor relationships going requires special attention. Over the years, I’ve found three things to be particularly helpful:
A client once asked me, “What’s the secret to developing relationships with donors?” My response? Time.
Developing real, authentic, and meaningful relationships takes time.
That may seem like an easy answer, but it’s true. Think of relationships you have with people in your life outside of your organization—whether it’s with a spouse, friend, neighbor or even the person who cuts your hair. I’m willing to bet that these relationships were built over time and through a series of interactions where you each shared things about yourselves. You learned about one another and from one another, discovered commonalities, and your connection grew deeper.
No shortcuts, just time together.