GivingTake Blog Posts

We Need to Change the Conversation
Words are powerful and have a way of evoking an immediate emotional response to the reader or listener. When you hear the references “nonprofit” organization or “for-profit” corporation which one gives you a: ·         Stronger sense of competency? ·         Stronger sense of viability? ·         Feeling of strength? ·         Sense of longevity? ·         Sense of management prowess? […]
Board Overreach
Who is in charge? A recent dust up at Suffolk University in Boston over a conflict between the board and its new President of seven months, shined a bright light on what happens when boards are too controlling. After the departure of its president of more than 20 years, Suffolk has had five presidents in […]
TOP 5 GivingTake Posts Over the Past 5 Years…A Taste of What’s Been on Our Mind
What better way to find out what is on the minds of our advancement colleagues than to see what they are reading about on blogs. The Copley Raff GivingTake Blog has been publishing for five years now, and here are the top five most read posts:   #5  The Case for Gray Hair The advancement profession is […]
Fundraising Forecasts for 2016…a head scratcher
  This is the time of year when I take stock to reflect and project about new advancement trends and developments, and what seems to be gaining steam to make a splash in the coming year.  2015 was a quiet year for innovation and 2016 looks no different. The past five years or so brought […]
It is Time to Revisit Charitable Gift Annuities
  I was skeptical at first.  A colleague introduced me to a strategy that removes all risk to the nonprofit organization (NPO) when writing a charitable gift annuity (CGA), and reduces significantly the risk of default to the donor.  This is especially true for smaller NPOs and younger donors.  Larger NPOs can tolerate more risk […]
New Gift Counting Standard… Self Serving?
By Larry Raff In Insights, Major Gifts, Training Posted October 5, 2015 0 Comments
  My jaw dropped when I read the latest edition of Healthcare Philanthropy, the publication of the Association of Healthcare Philanthropy(AHP). Under the heading of “The Climate of Integration” AHP says its recent gift-reporting standards recommend that charitable institutions show total productivity of fundraising efforts by recognizing revocable bequest commitments and life-income gifts at the […]
Doing the Right Thing…Even if It is Hard
  Every now and then I construct a case study about a situation that applies more broadly to our work in the non-profit sector and has many potential paths to the outcome.  While this particular case is personal, it has application to the advancement field; for example, the dilemma of legacy naming opportunities that may […]
What Makes Someone Care?
By Larry Raff In Insights, Planning & Strategy Posted August 11, 2015 0 Comments
  This is a question explored in a recent NY Times article (“Empathy is Actually a Choice”, July 10, 2015) that examines a body of research that can inform advancement professionals in important ways. The research explores empathy and how it is applied and how it is influenced. For instance, research indicates that people are […]
People Just Want to be Heard
  This is a powerful notion that often is not considered or is discounted. By inviting input and advice, you will actually attract involvement from your stakeholders.  Here are some examples where advancement efforts can be furthered by seeking information from donors and stakeholders. We all have lemons to lemonade stories where a donor calls […]
Justifying the Hire of Another Gift Officer
  I get this question often…when is the right time to hire another gift officer? Perhaps a better question is how do I justify hiring another gift officer so I can get the position in the budget? You and your CFO/CEO will need some idea about the return on the investment (ROI) and the time […]
Do They Trust You?
“Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts.” Albert Einstein The success of fundraising and advancement depends upon your credibility, and that of your organization and leadership with your donors. Donors have an overwhelming number of choices for use of their philanthropic dollar.  So the slightest reason for them to […]
Campaign Confusion
Campaigns come in many flavors. ·         Capital Campaign ·         Annual Fund Campaign ·         Direct Mail Campaign ·         Employee Campaign ·         Endowment Campaign ·         Comprehensive vs. Targeted Campaign For advancement professionals, these different campaign constructs are generally understood, but not so much for volunteers and donors. I have found over the years that there is also […]

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