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Standing on the Iceberg

April 11, 2017

By Bruce Berglund Over the years I’ve had the great joy of working with hundreds of non-profit CEOs/Executive Directors (EDs) and development staff. A few years ago, a young executive director called me. He was frustrated and worried that he wasn’t doing his job. Why? He wasn’t bringing in enough big checks. I encouraged him […]

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Getting Out of the Special Events Business

March 27, 2017

By Danny Maier In Part I of this series, we discussed the hazards of being in the “special events business” versus true fundraising. If you recognized your organization in that post, your next question is probably: “How do we become an organization more focused on major gifts?” The answer is all about culture change. Weaning […]

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How I Learned to Love Fundraising

March 9, 2017

By Robin Jordan My journey to loving fundraising starts with a story. I started my career as a young enthusiastic program director in the nonprofit world. I was hired by the YMCA and my area of expertise was fitness. Picture leg warmers, headbands, and those very becoming leotards. While I might be dating myself, some […]

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How to Face Down a Monster

October 17, 2016

By Robin Jordan This October, the Donor By Design team is tackling spooky situations in development. Join us this month for hair-raising stories and cautionary tales of frightful fundraising!   The thought of asking for money can be intimidating and overwhelming. The planning and work that it takes to prepare for a successful campaign can often […]

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A Chilling Tale

October 12, 2016

By Bruce Berglund This October, the Donor By Design team is tackling spooky situations in development. Join us this month for hair-raising stories and cautionary tales of frightful fundraising! I have the opportunity to meet some of the most amazing people as part of my work helping not-for-profits fund their causes. A few years back I had […]

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Re-reading the Lessons

June 23, 2016

By Danny Maier A good friend recently returned a book I lent her a while back. How many books are sitting in your bookcase that you read so long ago their lesson has faded from your memory? The book, The Fundraiser’s Guide to Irresistible Communications by Jeff Brooks, is a simple guide on how to […]

Posted in: Blog, Case for Support, Stewardship
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A Solid Foundation

June 9, 2016

By the Donor By Design Team Over the course of the past year, we’ve partnered with NAYDO (North American YMCA Development Organization) to produce a series of podcasts to help YMCA leaders expand their fundraising and leadership abilities. With their permission, we are sharing these podcasts with you. While they were created for YMCAs, we […]

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Checkbooks and Calendars

April 18, 2016

By Bruce Berglund As some of you may know, this past year has been really rough on the Berglund family and me personally. Over the last seven months I’ve lost both my father and my mother. I was blessed with wonderful parents and enjoyed a great relationship with both. As the trustee of our family […]

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Why Money Matters

March 28, 2016

Over the course of the past year, we’ve partnered with NAYDO (North American YMCA Development Organization) to produce a series of podcasts to help YMCA leaders expand their fundraising and leadership abilities. With their permission, we are sharing those podcasts with you. While the podcasts were created for YMCAs, we think any nonprofit, church or […]

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Beyond the Bricks

March 10, 2016

By the Donor By Design Team   February 29, 2016 was truly a day of community-wide celebration in the heart of downtown Kokomo, Indiana. YMCA volunteers and staff, city and county officials, business leaders and Y members gathered to celebrate the grand opening of their new YMCA facility. The event marked the culmination of years of […]

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Shed a Little Light

February 11, 2016

By Jon Simons As a cyclist, I have never really looked forward to the winter months. I’m fine with riding in cold weather (it’s all about the layers), but the real challenge comes from the shorter hours of daylight. Night riding on the roads of New Jersey is unsafe and unnerving to say the least! […]

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Willing to Wait

January 29, 2016

By Bruce Berglund Being a fundraising volunteer isn’t easy. One of the main reasons why is that it is so personal. It’s you, connecting with your peers, possibly even your friends or family, to ask them to be generous towards a cause you believe in. For even the most passionate volunteer, the experience can be […]

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Thanks but No Thanks

December 10, 2015

By Jon Simons and Lora Dow If you have been in fund development long enough, you may have found yourself in this situation: Early in the cultivation process for a capital gift, we joined a volunteer and prospective donor for a vision tour of a soon-to-be-renovated facility. While touring, the volunteer did a wonderful job of […]

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Look for the Seams

March 4, 2015

By Thom Peters There is a legend in baseball that one of the reasons Ted Williams was such a great hitter was due to his ability to see the seams on the baseball as it came hurling toward him at 95 miles an hour. Supposedly, his eyesight was so good, he could essentially slow the […]

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Common Ground

February 5, 2015

By Thom Peters Confession: I am a graduate of the Ohio State University. Having lived in Wisconsin for the past 18 years, I have endured the wrath of Badger fans and even a number of Michigan folks. Much of this comes from friends and seemingly sane people who really don’t like my Buckeyes. Even more […]

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A Story of Perseverance

January 21, 2015

By Journey Johnson Near the end of last year, my friend, Thom Peters, and I had the privilege of visiting with Kingsport Y CEO, Charlie Glass, and touring their beautiful new YMCA. What a fabulous facility! But even more inspiring is the perseverance of Charlie and his Y team to finally fulfill their community’s dream […]

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