Fundraiser Snapshot: Robert Thompson
“Fundraising at its basic level is relationship building …,” he says. “… Knowing [the board of directors’ level of] commitment, leveraging their influence and affluence.
“A major goal will be maximizing our assets,” he adds.
Thompson offers this piece of advice for fundraisers: “Never accept no as an answer or that no means no.”
“If you’ve done your homework and go to a donor and ask for an amount and get no direct responses or affirmations, then that prospect is either at the wrong time, [or] it’s the wrong amount or the wrong person asking.
“Make the ask stronger and go back to that prospect, and you’ll be successful that second time around,” he says. “Do your homework, and find a way to negotiate and ask in a way that meets the needs of that donor.”
He adds that it’s important to continue fundraising even during these tough economic times.
“Always communicate,” Thompson says. “Some fundraisers in times like these want to entrench due to the economy. I feel it’s more important to communicate the great need now to make up any differences you anticipate.” FS