One would be hard pressed to argue that a call from Robert Redford to the speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, helped salvage money for the arts in the economic-stimulus bill last week.
It’s often been said (by me, anyway) that empathy could do more good in the world than war and peace put together. That’s especially true in the world of fundraising, where you’re trying to get people to give you money, and you’re giving them nothing in return but a warm feeling. After all, it’s how people feel, not what they think, that determines their behavior. So how do donors feel? It’s a simple question, but the answers can be very complicated and contradictory. We’re talking about human nature, after all. It might not be easy to know what donors care about, but