Why Silos and Fundraising Don't Mix and 10 Ways to Break Them Down
In this silo state of mind, how can any program succeed in a holistic way? Shouldn't each prospect be viewed as a potential donor via annual gifts, major gifts and planned gifts? Donors can give in so many ways, from their individual gifts, corporate matching gifts, corporate gifts, family foundation gifts, etc.
In many shops, gift clubs are used in theory to increase gifts from smaller to larger gifts over time. That said, in a silo world, staff is encouraged to discuss strategy of prospects that might mean giving up excellent prospects in its portfolio to other staff members. You can see singular thinking may lead to individual success but not overall department success.
Have you tried to break down silos in favor of a cultural organizational change that emphasizes the whole and not the parts? To help you do this, consider employing the following steps:
- Realize that you have silos by doing a development internal audit.
- Use tools such as the pyramid of giving that points out all facets of prospects.
- Create individual and team goals with a variety of metrics, not just amount raised.
- Include new metrics such as numbers in portfolio, number of solicitations, number of closes, number of gifts, numbers cultivated, number of volunteers recruited, etc.
- Encourage each development officer to look at each prospect in potential annual-, major- and planned-gift ways.
- Encourage team/department goals, and celebrate success in each area equally.
- Use a research manager to direct prospect strategy sessions for all development officers.
- Train and educate development committee volunteers to think globally concerning any potential prospect.
- Emphasize with staffers that while they have specific functions for specific types of gifts, also keep an eye open for additional gift opportunities.
- Educate organizational leadership on the value of prospect engagement and relationship building.
Duke has extensive experience as a nonprofit practitioner, author, lecturer and consultant. He has been a contributing author to NonProfit PRO for the last 11 years. He has been a long-standing member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals where he was previously named the AFP Indiana Chapter Fundraising Executive of the Year and has held the CFRE designation for many years.
He received his doctorate degree from West Virginia University with an emphasis in education administration, master's degree from Marshall University with an emphasis in public administration and a bachelor's degree from West Virginia University with an emphasis in marketing/management. He has also completed post graduate work at the University of Louisville.
He is currently executive director of development for The Salvation Army Indiana Division in Indianapolis, Indiana. Contact Duke at email@example.com or 317-224-1029.