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The First Year: 365 Days Towards Becoming a Successful Major Gift Officer Lessons for Managers and MGOs Alike Michael Russell Courtney Billing University.

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Presentation on theme: "The First Year: 365 Days Towards Becoming a Successful Major Gift Officer Lessons for Managers and MGOs Alike Michael Russell Courtney Billing University."— Presentation transcript:

1 The First Year: 365 Days Towards Becoming a Successful Major Gift Officer Lessons for Managers and MGOs Alike Michael Russell Courtney Billing University of Minnesota Foundation Minnesota Medical Foundation

2 The First Quarter Building a Successful MGO

3 The Importance of Pre-Hire Planning Opportunities and Pitfalls of Newcomers Expectations for Success Portfolio Building

4 Core Values For Success Relationship-Oriented External Focus Consistency Follow Through Passionate Integrity

5 On Boarding a New Gift Officer Develop a comprehensive training schedule to introduce your new hire Beyond “staff introductions” – think “curriculum” –Build a specific set of learning objectives

6 Building a successful MGO team (even if only of one) MGO portfolio prospect assignments –Initiatives, regions, capacity Set clear standards for contact reports and monthly goals (e.g., minimum 12 f2f visits) Establish annual goals and performance metrics

7 The Second Quarter Diving in

8 Find A Teacher Mentoring –Internal or external experienced fundraiser –Consider a donor mentor as well Executive Team Interaction Mission, vision, values, and future strategy Board Introductions Minimum of meeting one Board or Committee member

9 Getting to know your program(s) Internal immersion Tours and meetings with knowledgeable staff/program officers Conversations re: vision and strategy with organization leadership External Immersion Dialogues with constituents and “alumni” Minimum of one board member or established donor

10 The Third Quarter So Now You’re a Major Gift Officer…

11 Finding Success in Fundraising Two Primary Components to a Development Position: –External: Relationship Management –Internal: Prospect/Portfolio Management The Hardest Parts of the Job: –Getting the Appointment –“Asking” for the Gift

12 Major Gift Donor Profile Ability – to make a contribution of $25k, $50k, $100k+ Affinity – an interest in organization’s work Accessibility - willing to meet and hear about organization / connection via board or other individual

13 Taking the Right Steps Prioritize your time and efforts Focus on your org’s likely MG donors (individuals vs. corporations/foundations) Timing Average time to MG = 18 months – 2 years Donors in stewardship Important part of 1 st yr. portfolio, potential source of future gifts

14 Picking Up the Phone Keep it short and sweet –Introduction (If not a good time,…) –Purpose of call Brief explanation of who you are, why you want to meet, and when you can meet –If Day Does Not Work… –Closing and confirmation

15 Hallmarks of Successful First Visits Come prepared to ask meaningful questions Goal of setting future prospect strategy Be brief – you can ask to stay longer Begin a dialogue, but listen more than you talk Conclude with reasons for follow-up and timeline

16 The Fourth Quarter Plan the Work, Work the Plan

17 Organization and Workflow Working with your Manager Creating systems and routines Documenting contacts and measuring results Donor Strategies and Annual Work Plans

18 Networking and Professional Development Professional and “Peer” Organizations Non-Profit Boards and Civic Organizations Connect with the Super Connectors “Study Groups” Development Conferences Recommended reading

19 New Major Gift Officer Toolkit Annual Plan Outline with Gift Pyramid Suggested Performance Metrics for Development Staff Templates: –Manager One-on-Ones –Contact Reports and Strategies Format –Communication ( s / Letters / Scripts) –First Visit Goal Sheet –Interview Questions

20 Questions? Thank you! Courtney Billing Michael Russell Minnesota Medical FoundationUniversity of Minnesota Foundation


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