February 7, 2010

Just like you, I volunteer. And right now, I’m setting up some face-to-face solicitation appointments for me to join a staff person on some calls to donors that I know. So what do I get in my email the other day? Background on the prospects to help me prepare.

Wow. That’s my reaction to the info from this development officer. Not just gift history. More. Things like:

— Meeting objectives (e.g., best possible outcome and least acceptable outcome)

— Suggested talking points (ways to open the conversation and put everyone at east plus some probing questions and ideas; and some ideas about how to react to the donor’s questions and reactions)

— An update about the organization (helps me feel comfortable and more fluent to be in the loop on recent events)

— Possible request – and not just money but how the donor’s gift would be used

Great stuff. So what do you give volunteers (and other staff) when they go out to solicit?

About Simone Joyaux

A consultant specializing in fund development, strategic planning, and board development, Simone P. Joyaux works with all types and sizes of nonprofits, speaks at conferences worldwide, and teaches in the graduate program for philanthropy at Saint Mary’s University, MN. Her books, Keep Your Donors and Strategic Fund Development, are standards in the field.

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