Since the dawn of the 501(c)(3) has also been the argument of whether or not fundraising is sales.
“They are the same thing,” says my banker board member, “Nonprofits have a lot to learn from business!”
“They absolutely are not!” shouts my executive director. “We are in the business of changing lives, NOT making money!”
Technically, my E.D. is right; they are two distinct professions in two disparate sectors and, therefore, not the same.
However, there is a subtext under that question “Aren’t they the same thing?”
Drill down into that question and the subject of WHY we are fundraisers…
If you’re already doing some fundraising or work in the nonprofit sector, you’re probably becoming aware of the various functions in the development departments of your colleagues.
After more than two decades in the field, I see THREE types of fundraising leadership tracks out there:
This is where I started, what I call “the beginning,” meaning in a new nonprofit with a new fundraising role I started from scratch. It’s been a huge advantage for me to learn in real-time how a nonprofit organization is born and to start a fundraising program from the ground level. …
WHETHER YOU’RE NEW TO THIS OR YOU’VE WORKED FOR NONPROFITS FOR SOME TIME NOW, YOU’RE HERE FOR A REASON. LET ME ASSURE YOU…YOU’RE IN THE RIGHT PLACE AND YOU’RE HERE AT THE RIGHT TIME.
We’re in unprecedented times right now. Regardless, you need to be fundraising NOW.
You’re in the right place, right now. Your nonprofit needs you.
Many clients of mine have asked for advice on fundraising during this pandemic. I know you may be feeling scared and uncertain of the future. I get you.
One of my most recent projects was building online individual giving from scratch for the YMCA’s national headquarters in Chicago. And just as we were launching everything, the country was hit by hurricane Harvey…then Irma…then Maria.
I remember a marketing professional advising us that we should “apologize for asking for donations” to help our locals Ys offer shelter. …