Browsing the blog archives for January, 2010

Increasing the Value Proposition for Your Donors

Here’s a simple little math formula: The higher the Gift Value Proposition, the more likely the donor is to make the gift. So, how do we make the Gift Value Proposition as high as possible?  You could reduce the ask amount.  If the top part of the equation holds constant, reducing the denominator (Ask Amount) […]


Do Your Board Members Expect to Give?

Today, Doug Mason, a colleague at GGTS, and I led a webinar focused on enhancing the effectiveness of higher education foundation boards.  A major theme during the 90 minute session was the need to establish clear giving expectations with prospective board members beginning during the board recruitment process. A participant asked a good question:  what […]


Welcome New Site!

At the turn of the New Year, one of my priorities was to make The Far Edge of Promise a bit more user friendly.  My goal was to keep the site clean but add some ease with which people could sign up for the blog and navigate.   Well, we have a new site!!  Take a […]


Solicitation Without Inspiration Equals Frustration

At a national conference for advancement leaders yesterday, I listened to a keynote presentation given by Patrick F. Bassett, president of the National Association of Independent Schools, regarding key trends and predictions for advancement.  One statement he made struck a chord with me, “We are learning from surveys that major donors are reporting an increase […]


Asking for Money or Educating?

Do you view your work as asking donors for money?  Or do you view your work as educating donors?  The difference, of course, is substantial. One question, the first, is focused on a transaction in which we get some of what the donor has.  It also suggests that we are responsible for the asking.  On […]


Mission, Vision, and . . . Values?

Today, most sophisticated leaders recognize the need to begin with mission and vision when developing strategic priorities and campaign projects.  Besides being a logical approach to organizational strategic planning, major donors want to know that your goals to raise significant dollars are aligned with the purpose (mission) and the future (vision) of the organization. The […]


When Donors Say Hello

“Hello??!!??”  We’ve all heard that word – used in that way – before.  You, perhaps, have used it yourself.  You’re at a store and the teenage clerk doesn’t stop the personal call on her mobile phone long enough to scan your items on the belt.  You may feel the urge to say, “uhh, Hello??!!??”  As […]


10,000 Hours

In his book, Outliers:  The Story of Success, Malcolm Gladwell posits the notion that it takes at least 10,000 hours of dedicated, focused practice to become “expert” at something.   He holds that this time constraint is relatively constant no matter the endeavor.  Want to become a professional athlete, a rock star, or a uber-successful […]


The Most Important Prediction for the Next Decade

I’ve made broad and sweeping predictions on how technology, donor expectations and regulation, and major gifts will impact philanthropy and our work in the next decade. Now, I offer the final, most important philanthropy prediction for the next decade. . . 2020 Philanthropy Prediction 10:  Institutions that thrive will systematically and regularly ask donors for […]

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2020 Philanthropy Predictions – Part III

Below is the third installment in the four-part series devoted to philanthropy predictions for the 2010-2019 decade.  Part I focused on how technology will change our work over the next 10 years, while Part II focused on the ways donor expectations and the regulatory environment will impact our work.  Part III focuses on major gift […]