Articles

Video, Practical Business Philanthropy: A Man’s Best Friend

Connect Your Passion and Business Growth

Corporate philanthropy grows businesses. Do you agree?

Watch the one-and-a-half-minute video below for proof.
Last year, Michael Kline (www.intus.life) attended my presentation at Lakewood Ranch Business Alliance. Afterward, he jumped at the chance to help Southeastern Guide Dogs. Michael realized that he loved speaking in front of groups, something not all staff and volunteers enjoy.
Reaching out to companies allows Michael to help Southeastern Guide Dogs and his firm. He connects with …
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Outside Influences: How is Today’s Political Climate Impacting Boards?

“I’m dealing with board implosion all over,” said an officer from an organization with hundreds of US affiliates. The comment tickled my curiosity. Given the harsh quality of public discourse, is her experience an aberration or a trend?

What’s Happening?
To learn more, I asked a dozen leaders who interact with multiple nonprofits. Two responses emerged. The first was no change. The second was neither greater board cohesion or conflicts, but more of both.
Admittedly, my inquiries only scratched the …
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Practical and Tactical? Yes! How Corporate Philanthropy Can Grow Your Business

I was recently a guest on Growth Igniters Radio with Pam and Scott Harper. Here are highlights from our conversation:
  • Historically, philanthropy was something nice to do. Now, to successfully conduct business, it’s essential.
  • Typical returns on philanthropy include branding improvement, employee engagement, and community enhancement.
  • Employees care about where they work. A company that gives back to society in a meaningful way has a powerful tool to attract, recruit, and retain.
  • Return on philanthropy data is depressed because the
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Stop Asking, “How Much Did We Raise?” to Solve Your Biggest Fundraising Challenge

Q: What standard evaluation question shrinks your donated nonprofit revenue growth?

A: How much money did we raise?
Surprised? Let me explain.
You’ve heard the adage: “What gets measured gets done.” So, asking how much did we raise is good, right? Yes. Evaluation improves fundraising. However, if you only measure immediate results, you risk sweeping future donations in the trash.
Instead, seek donations today and resources (including donations) tomorrow. Measure: 1. Money raised today AND 2. Future income improvements.…
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To Give or Not to Give? Profit Sharing with Your Nonprofit Customers

Are charitable gifts included on your firm’s tax filings? Many firms demonstrate their corporate social responsibility by setting aside a percent of their profits to give to nonprofit customers. Read on to learn more this tactic.

How Does This Tactic Work?

If you enjoy a profitable year, you donate some of your profit to your nonprofit customers. A national office technology firm, for example, gives one-third of its profits.
Pros
  • Give-back donating offers low-risk giving: you donate if you profit.
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The Nonprofit Doomsday Clock: How Close is it to Midnight at Your Organization?

Is your organization at financial risk?

We’ve all read headlines about the Doomsday Clock moving toward midnight. Imagine your nonprofit has a similar instrument. It measures your organization’s financial risks. What time is it? Is it three minutes to midnight? 

Many of you share your fears with me. After all, you know donors die. Government programs end. Galas grow stale. You’re smart to be concerned, especially if a single revenue source funds more than 25 percent of your operations.  

Three Techniques to Reset Your Clock To

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Let’s Hold a Contest: Crafting Nonprofit Perks that Win, Part 2

Many businesses demonstrate their philanthropy by providing nonprofit’s special promotions. Read on to learn the benefits and challenges of contests.

What is it?
You announce a competition for nonprofits. The prize? Free services.

Pros:

When well-structured, contests provide excellent business opportunities. Smart challenges highlight your generosity. They showcase your expertise. Prospective customers see before and after pictures. You meet tons of prospects such as staff, board members, and volunteers.

Cons:

If your goal is to convert applicants into long-term customers, …

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Stop Mission Creep Now

How to Keep the Creep Out of Your Nonprofit

Stop Mission CreepWhat is mission creep or drift? A disease that inflicts nonprofits that chase after money. Why is mission creep such a dread disease? You waste energy for short-term gain that you otherwise would invest to gain a sustainable income. 

Karen’s Mission Creep Stopper

When you identify a new revenue opportunity, use this question to avoid mission drift. 

If it wasn’t for the money, would we do this? 

 A “no” indicates mission

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Discounts: Crafting Nonprofit Perks that Don’t Bite Back

Many businesses express their philanthropic intent by providing nonprofit customer’s special promotions. Read on to learn the benefits and challenges of discounts.   

Discounts

What is it? You offer your nonprofit customers an automatic price reduction. Adobe, for instance, “offers nonprofit pricing discounts. . .”   

Pro: Nonprofits buy your services for less. You know the answer when prospects ask you for donations.And, when the cost is the deciding factor: they pick you. 

Con: Discounts can increase price competition to your detriment.

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The Joy of Undesignated Donations: Creating Diamond Donors

diamond donor fundraisingWhat is a diamond donor? A contributor who gives undesignated cash or assets. Diamond donors embrace your need for the flexibility of cash.  

Why are undesignated donations helpful? They empower nonprofits to leverage funds and purchase necessary but unattractive products and services. These include tires, IT counsel, and TP. 

Why don’t more donors give undesignated gifts? Two reasons: fear and lack of awareness. New donors hear nonprofit horror stories. Newbies give explicitly. They hope to ensure you will use their

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