Let’s face it: big gifts move the needle.
Direct mail is fine, and yes, every gift is meaningful. But think about truly advancing the mission of your organization. Do $100 checks have the power to take you to a new, better place?
How much time and money do you spend pursuing $100 checks? And are you as intentional and systematic when it comes to your major gifts program?
You can be.
Because it’s one thing to get a major gift from time-to-time. It’s another thing entirely to set up a program that will deliver a steady stream of major gifts for years to come.
So, let’s talk about your systems.
What processes and procedures are you putting into place to make sure you’re developing a pipeline of major donors? What frameworks are your major gifts officers (MGOs) using to stay on track?
This is your foundation. And if the foundation is shaky, the house will eventually fall.
Key Frameworks and Proven Systems
Are your MGOs ready to engage in the day-to-day of the work? What will they do day-to-day and week-to-week to make sure they hit their goals? Do they have a game plan? If not, they’re going to need your help.
It’s hard to teach the art of relationships. It’s best to identify and hire MGOs who just have that “special something” you can’t teach. Usually you can spot it during an interview process.
But on the science side of the work, there’s a whole body of best-practice out there that can be taught.
Your MGOs, especially if they’re new, need to know how to do these three things: 1) organize and work through a portfolio; 2) structure their prospecting and outreach so that they’re sure to get plenty of donor meetings; and 3) build trust relationships from scratch. How will they get it done without proven workflows, systems, frameworks, and repeatable processes?
Short answer: they won’t. Without good systems and processes, your MGOs will be left to operate on instinct alone. And they won’t be as productive.
So, make sure they have the know-how and tools needed to optimize the science side of fundraising. It will help them build good habits early on and will pay huge dividends over time.
And, of course, it goes without saying that they need to have technology tools (like a decent CRM) and other resources required to be successful in this work: an expense account for travel and meals with donors, a phone and computer, and perhaps even some logistical or administrative support back at the office. These things are all important, sure. But they’re not nearly as important as good habits, workflows, and processes that ultimately lead to new and deeper donor relationships.
So, what are these frameworks and proven systems? How do you learn more about the “science side” of the work?
Well, for you, I’ve put together a special four-day tutorial on major gifts systems. In it, I’ll walk you through the key concepts and show you some examples.
Best of all, it’s free!
Sign up below to receive instant access to the four-day tutorial.
Course content is delivered daily, directly to your email inbox. Here’s what you’ll get:
- A new framework for managing your portfolio
- A planning tool to accelerate your relationship-building
- A simple technique for getting more meetings with top prospects
- A word-for-word outreach script and other actionable tactics you can use today
Again, all for free.
Sign up below. Even if you already subscribe to Fearless Fundraising, you’ll need to register separately for this tutorial.