New Book and Companion CD Takes New Approach to the Campaign Feasibility Study
Milwaukee, WI, April 4, 2009 — After more than 1,000 feasibility interviews spanning three decades, consultant Gary J. Hubbell has come to believe that not every institution needs to hire counsel when planning their next campaign.
“Feasibility study interviews are as much about cultivating the prospective donor as they are about ascertaining answers about the case and the individual’s giving interests. Therefore, in some cases, it is appropriate to maintain the relationship continuity of the major gifts field staff and their prospects/donors, rather than “inserting” an unknown third party (the consultant) for a single interview,” writes consultant Gary Hubbell.
Hubbell asserts that experienced development shops with multiple major gift field staff are often good candidates for a staff-led study. This short book is a quick read and is written for the professional development practitioner who recognizes the limitations of the “traditional” study approach. He intends this book to provide complete guidance to the design and implementation of the feasibility study—including what it takes to analyze the findings and determine a goal and campaign strategy. Of real value is an enclosed CD, on which readers will find numerous sample and template documents for customization in their own study preparation.
The book opens with an exploration of the conditions that warrant staff conducting the study and those warranting counsel taking the lead. Hubbell continues by identifying 10 benefits to taking the staff-led approach, along with knowing the timing for such a departure, and when to ask counsel’s help and partnership.
Thorough, yet succinct, subsequent chapters cover how to determine the study objectives, selecting the study team, selecting those to be interviewed, and arranging the interviews. He provides rationale, sample language, and tips along the way. Later chapters deal with the materials to prepare, conducting the actual interviews, coordinating and tracking the interviews, and following up after interviews.
Hubbell pulls back the veil from consulting processes and outlines study data collection and content analysis techniques, determining the goal, and preparing and presenting the report and recommendations. That is a new and welcome perspective.
The book guides the reader on how to address several crucial elements of the study, including: a) determining who and how many to interview; b) scheduling and conducting staff-led interviews that deepen prospect and donor relationships; c) asking the right questions to elicit answers that will help you plan your campaign; d) analyzing the findings and setting the campaign goal; and e) attracting and retaining top development staff through study participation.
Hubbell concludes with his perspective on the future of the campaign feasibility study. Serious practitioners will find value in the enclosed CD, containing document templates to give the reader a jump-start on planning their staff-led study.
The book is currently available at Amazon or through On The Cusp Publishing at www.OnTheCuspPublishing.com
Publisher: On the Cusp Publishing, P.O. Box 510257, Milwaukee, WI, 53203; (800) 805-7086; fax: (800) 805-7086; http//:www.OnTheCuspPublishing.com; 112 pages + CD; $49.95; ISBN 978-0-615-24378-8.