But wait. Our donors don’t have an agenda. They support our mission and our programs. They don’t come to us with an agenda.
Everybody has an agenda. Maybe they call it goals, or issues they care about. To be successful, you need to understand your donors and become their trusted advisor. Your job is to help them accomplish their goals.
OK, to be that trusted advisor you will need to talk with your folks a bit. With prospects, that’s probably a given, as you are soliciting them. With current donors, I hear you saying “I can’t possibly do that … there are too many!”
Pick a few, the number that you and others can visit, and see if the following key questions help you learn how best to secure really big gifts because you are the trusted advisor and collaborator.
- What support from us do you want to accomplish your goals?
- If you had additional resources, what areas would you like to address?
- How will you decide whether our activities have supported your goals?
- As you think about future donations, what excites you most or what concerns you most?
One of the best ways to add value to your donors is to help them think differently about their goals and agenda to get there. Good questions, asked gently, are a good way to do that.
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