Happy New Year!
Here’s to you and to all that you do to make the world a better place. We hope that your year-end efforts proved successful and that you found some time to relax and recharge over the Holidays.
As we move forward into January and start thinking about and executing on our plans for the year, now is the perfect time to connect with some of our key donors. Yes, while there will be details to figure out with the new tax bill and how they might impact the way some of our donors give, this is not the time to abandon good development out of concern for the unknown.
Regardless of whether your organization is on a fiscal or calendar year, we know that most of our donors have a January to December mindset when it comes to philanthropy. With that in mind, this is the right time to get in front of your donors to seek their feedback and ideas about your plans for the year ahead. This is a great opportunity to offer them an “insider’s vantage point” and to treat them as true partners in your mission.
Schedule meetings with several of your most significant and/or longstanding donors to share you plans for an upcoming program expansion, a new initiative that is in the works or maybe a staffing change you are considering. Ask them what they think about the plans and inquire if they think other supporters will favor the direction. Quite likely, their insights will help you to more effectively realize your strategic goals for the coming year and, in the end, you will be able to thank them for making it happen.
In light of this, it is also worth remembering one of our favorite maxims, “People support what they help to create.”
You don’t have to be launching a campaign or even a major gifts initiative for this to be an important and authentic way to build relationships. This is a chance to invite our donors into the process and for them to play an active role in moving the organization they care about forward.
So before you get used to writing “2018” in the date line, resolve to connect with your donors and engage them in your plans for the New Year. I promise, it will be time well spent.
by: David Gee, Associate Vice President, HUB Philanthropic Solutions