My favorite part is around 28 minutes in, where he talks about finding out what causes commitment to your nonprofit. Roger Craver says, you’ve got to find this out or you can’t keep your donors.
Surveying your donors is CRITICAL
So what should you do now? SURVEY! On the phone! In person! Online! Through the mail! Ask people what they want!
If you only take one thing from this podcast, take this. You must find out:
What causes commitment to your nonprofit?
The turnover problem
He also talks about how awful it is when senior executives do not respect fundraisers, and how it makes it difficult to hold onto donors, since, (duh) the fundraiser leaves or is fired every 12-18 months.
He said in the old days, it didn’t used to be like that.
What has changed?
Here’s what changed. The corporate mentality of “human resources” and people getting treated like interchangeable cogs in a wheel has trickled down to the nonprofit world. Executives and board don’t see how important it is to have someone in the fundraising position for a long time, to have them grow, to allocate money to educate them, and believe in them. They think you should have all of the skills instantly, without training, and be able to do 3 people’s jobs.
This means that when your boss fired you on a whim, they were just like, “We’ll get someone else in 2 minutes! Who needs a fundraising professional to stay longer than 12 months?”
This disposable culture of fundraising professionals is very sad. And Paul Nazareth agrees.
Roger Craver also said that more nonprofits should merge, and he doesn’t understand why more of them are not doing this in an increasingly competitive fundraising environment.
It’s a totally fascinating interview and I highly encourage you to listen to it, and read some of Roger’s posts on The Agitator. He’s got good things to say!