Representatives from nearly 200 local nonprofit organizations attended Barnes Dennig’s annual nonprofit seminar in April to learn more about fundraising strategies at the board level.  Carol Weisman, founder of Board Builders, and serial board president, led an engaging and enthusiastic discussion to help break down the intimidation and apprehension surrounding “the ask.”

According to Carol, individual donors comprise the vast majority of giving in America (over 70% of all annual contributions).  Armed with this statistic, board members in attendance were encouraged to steer their focus more intently on individuals when creating their fundraising strategy.  Not that contributions from corporations, foundations or bequests are any less important; however, it is wise to pair fundraising effort with the largest potential payoff.  Carol’s advice was to get to know the individual donor on their level by asking the right questions, then work to bridge the gap between the organization’s mission and what is important and meaningful to the donor.  This approach gives the donor a way to use his/her money to further causes he/she believes in, creating a “win-win” for both parties.

Building a Better Board

During the second half of the seminar, Carol offered tips on how to build a better board.  It can be quite difficult to attract new members and equip them with all of the skills they need to govern the entity effectively.  Carol described how to recruit, retain, involve, educate and reward board members, as well as advice for running efficient meetings.  It comes as no surprise that the success of a board is positively correlated with appropriate strategy and training.

To download an audio copy of the presentation from the seminar, please click here. To download a copy of the presentation slideshow, click here. For more information about Carol Weisman and Board Builders, please visit www.BoardBuilders.com.  As always, stay up to date regarding upcoming seminars and roundtable discussions by visiting www.barnesdennig.com.