Getting More—With The Same Tactics
Principle 8 of The Eight Principles™ is Invest, Integrate & Evaluate. This is the principle that gives you the perspective of capacity building. This principle, along with Principle 6, Divide & Grow™, Principle 4, Learn & Plan™, and Principle 5, Work from the Inside Out™, creates the blueprint for capacity building.
But simply developing the understanding and creating a plan to expand isn’t enough.
Remember the need to divide resources between production and capacity?
The real limiter, in most cases, is a lack of commitment to invest in capacity—time and money. By definition you won’t be able to spend these resources on production.
What does that mean? You guessed it. You may experience a temporary reduction in immediate revenue inflow. Yes, you may need to trim some of your programs—or at least make them more effective.
It’s foregoing the smaller “no” for the bigger “yes!”
And it’s not simply nonprofits that make this mistake.
A few short years ago they were the undisputed kings of the hill in photography. They invented popular photography. They made taking pictures something for the masses. Now they’re in receivership.
What happened? Although the tale is a long and convoluted one, the big bugaboo was when they made the decision to sell the patent to the digital camera. That’s right. They invented it. And they sold it.
At the time, their focus was on production. The cash cow of the film business, to be specific. Who needs to retool for digital when money is gushing in for film? Besides, who would ever want to use a phone to take pictures and share them electronically? What a cockamamie idea!
Need I say more?
The next five years will see a transformation of both the capacity of available philanthropy as well as in the manner we engage in it.
Are you ready to invest in the future, or simply milk the present?
I extend my thanks to all those well-motivated execs and development officers who reached out. These are good people doing very good things. Let’s hope they’re ready to take the next step.
Let me hear from you. Please share your situation and the challenges you face in developing sustainable revenue streams. Email me and I’ll arrange a brief consult providing you with practical guidance. I’ll choose some of these thorny obstacles to share, along with my insights, in upcoming columns.
Success is waiting. Go out and achieve it.
Larry believes in the power of relationships and the power of philanthropy to create a better place and transform lives.
Larry is the founder of The Eight Principles. His mission is to give nonprofits and philanthropists alike the opportunity to achieve their shared visions. With more than 25 years of experience in charitable fundraising and philanthropy, Larry knows that financial sustainability and scalability is possible for any nonprofit organization or charitable cause and is dependent on neither size nor resources but instead with the commitment to create a shared vision.
Larry is the author of the award-wining book, "The Eight Principles of Sustainable Fundraising." He is the Association of Fundraising Professionals' 2010 Outstanding Development Executive and has ranked in the Top 15 Fundraising Consultants in the United States by the Wall Street Business Network.
Larry is the creator of the revolutionary online fundraising training platform, The Oracle League.
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