Tuesday, July 26, 2011

BIG’s Blog: Start with a Plan

I spoke recently at the Benedictine Development Symposium, which is one of the premier gatherings in locale and content in Catholic fund raising today. The Benedictine Symposium draws both domestic and international attendees. One of the main messages in our presentation and in follow-up conversations was emphasizing the need for a comprehensive Development plan to address the fundamental change that is underway in Development today.

Endemic to the Development world is the built-in bias towards what I refer to as “Silver Bullets.” You know what I am talking about. “We would generate more donations if we just had a better Web site. We would raise more money if we had a way to fix our major donor program.”

In my presentation, I used the famous line from the Cheshire Cat in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: “If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.”

It’s never a “one fix” problem; it’s always about taking the time and effort to create a plan...a road where you want to go and how to get there.

This is a big one. If you put a comprehensive plan in place to integrate your offline and online fund raising efforts and more fully maximize your charitable major donor work, you will watch donations grow year-over-year. Or, keep doing what you are doing and your donations will surely decline.

The consensus of the Benedictine Development leaders in attendance is that they are moving to develop new plans. Very progressive!


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