Round-up: Advice on Thank You Notes Just in Time for Wednesday

Round-up: Advice on Thank You Notes Just in Time for Wednesday

After #GivingTuesday comes #ThankUNoteWed. To honor the occasion, I thought I'd round-up some good tips, advice, examples, and suggestions to help you on your way. While there are lots of great ideas and suggestions, the two most critical pieces of advice are to acknowledge gifts promptly and personally.

Just imagine what's possible

Just imagine what's possible

Just Imagine What's Possible When the other 82% gets its head out of the sand!?!

#GivingTuesday has already become an amazing global movement, raising close to $46 million in 2014. If I were a betting woman,  I would wager that the 2015 #GivingTuesday effort will raise even more. Afterall, giving on #GivingTuesday grew 95% between 2013 and 2014 and a reported 240% growth between 2013 and 2015. Growth is a good bet. The question, it seems to me, is not if there will be growth, but how much.  

However, a new study by the John Templeton Foundation reveals that only 18% of the American public is aware of #GivingTuesday.

Collaborative Conversations with Program Directors for Grant Writing Success

Collaborative Conversations with Program Directors for Grant Writing Success

You’re buzzing along through a grant application. You’ve written a fantastic description of your organization’s quality program. You’re feeling terrific about your proposal.

Then, there it is. The Outcomes Measures section.

You can hear your brain’s breaks screech and your fingers stop flying across the keyboard. You’re going to have to give that question some thought.

You get up from your desk and go talk with your Program Director. “What are our Outcomes Measures?” you ask.

“We measure the number of youth who graduate from our program,” The Program Director cheerfully says. She’s excited that you’re writing a grant.

Oh no. That’s a problem. ‘Number of kids graduating from your program’ is an output, not an outcome. What do you do?

Instead of launching into a long, dry explanation of the difference between outcomes and outputs that will make your Program Director’s eyes glaze-over and turn tale and run every time you’re working on a grant application in the future, here are four questions you can ask to get to the information you need:

Productivity Styles and Office Make-Overs

Last week, when I took Carson Tate’s productivity style quiz, I learned that I have not one, but three productivity styles:  I’m a prioritizer, an arranger, and a visualizer. I’m everything but a planner. I don’t know for certain, but I suspect that most planning tools are made for planners. This is probably part of why so many planning tools just aren’t effective for me.

At the time that I took the quiz, I had slowly been working to re-organize my office. 

What's Your Productivity Style?

What's Your Productivity Style?

Would you like to find out? Knowing might help you work smarter.

A couple of weeks ago, Kivi Leroux Miller, the Nonprofit Marketing Guide, recommended a quiz in the Harvard Business Review on Productivity Styles. The quiz, developed by productivity expert Carson Tate allowed people to identify their personal productivity styles and then pointed to personalized recommendations for productivity tools.

Teaching Our Children About Philanthropy - Part II

Teaching Our Children About Philanthropy - Part II

TEACHING OUR CHILDREN ABOUT PHILANTHROPY - PART II

In Part 1 of this 2-Part Series, we looked at how we share our philanthropic values with kids and how many people like to volunteer with their children this time of year.

In fact, Saturday, November 21st is Family Volunteer Day. Family Volunteer Day, sponsored by Generation On, an initiative of Points of Light, is a day of caring designed to engage youth and children in caring about the world around them.

It’s not too late to get involved.

Teaching Your Children About Philanthropy

The next few weeks are essential to nonprofits. 25% of all donations for the year come in between November 14 and December 14.

There is an out-pouring of gifts this time of year because people feel generous this time of year.

Many families decide that this is a great time to make sure that they teach their children about charitable giving and volunteerism. Some parents feel it’s especially important at this time of year to help children understand gratitude and the real meaning of the holidays. Still others are motivated by a desire to counter-balance the season’s commercialism and the focus on materialistic presents and desires for nonessential items.

But don’t take your young children to the local soup kitchen just yet, says writer Kelley Holland

Show Me The Data

Show Me The Data

Show Me The Data 2015

A List of Annually Published Research Studies & Reports on the Nonprofit Sector

This report, just released today, is a list of 29 studies—all of which are published annually, bi-annually, or more frequently—that are of interest to nonprofit professionals. These studies, for the most part, focus on fundraising and  marketing, but a few touch on other topics (like compensation) or cover a broad spectrum of organizations in a particular region or within a particular issue focus.

Are Your Sponsors Commitment Phobic?

Are Your Sponsors Commitment Phobic?

Do you have trouble getting your sponsors to sign on the bottom line?

Planning a fundraising event is challenging and time-consuming. You need a minimum of six months to plan an event (yes, I know it can be done in less, but it begins to get ugly if you have less time than that) and, ideally, nine months or more.

Lining up sponsorship commitments is usually something you do early in the process because that way, you can offer your sponsors maximum benefits—they can be in all of the pre-event publicity like participant registration or ticket sales and event promotional materials.

What if your sponsors delay making their commitment decisions?