Philanthropy Is Dream-Driven
It starts with the best of intentions. Your organization is focused on helping others — some in serious need. The money that’s required to close the gap on the critical project seems to be within your reach.
And then. . .
Expectation and entitlement sweep in and, suddenly, goals are raised without reference to capacity or potential. Fundraisers feel the unrealistic time frame being imposed upon them. Donors sense the pressure — and some are being pressured. After all, the cause is worth it, right?
The results become the death of dreams — donor dreams, fundraising careers and organizational reputation.
Think this sounds unrealistic? Perhaps not as dramatically, but it happens all the time. Setting unrealistic goals, pressuring donors — all in the name of the “good.”
It’s a straightforward matter to determine real fundraising capacity. Setting a goal simply on the basis of “need” is reckless.
Philanthropy isn’t need-driven. It’s dream-driven. And donors are in the driver’s seat. Fundraising is beholden to the natural laws of philanthropy.
There’s so much out there that is never tapped. Why? Because organizations and their leadership fall victim to expectation. To expect is to assume. Never assume.
The better way is to invite. To partner. Donors want to be a part of your success. Let them.
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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