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Keys to Managing the Major Gifts Process: It’s All in the Execution
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Keys to Managing the Major Gifts Process: It’s All in the Execution


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Major gifts–whether $1,000 or $100,000 or anything in between–still produce the lion’s share of a nonprofits philanthropic revenue. The key to a successful program to identify, inform, interest and …

Major gifts–whether $1,000 or $100,000 or anything in between–still produce the lion’s share of a nonprofits philanthropic revenue. The key to a successful program to identify, inform, interest and involve major gift donors, is more than simply asking–as important as the solicitation is. This webinar will focus on the development of a disciplined approach to achieving consistently good results and exceeding your goal.

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  • 1. Keys to Managing the Major Gifts Process: It’s All in the Execution David Mersky March 6, 2013A Service Of: Sponsored by:
  • 2. INTEGRATED PLANNING Advising nonprofits in: • Strategy • Planning (617) 969-1881 • Organizational Development info@synthesispartnership.comA Service Of: Sponsored by:
  • 3. Affordable collaborative data management in the cloud.A Service Of: Sponsored by:
  • 4. Today’s Speaker David Mersky Founder and Managing Director Mersky, Jaffe & AssociatesAssisting with chat questions: Hosting:Jamie Maloney, Nonprofit Webinars Sam Frank, Synthesis PartnershipA Service Of: Sponsored by:
  • 5. The Keys toManaging the Major Gifts Process: Its All in the Execution March 6, 2013 ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 6. ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 7. Creating the Plan: Managing the Major Gift Moves Process©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 8. What is Moves Management?• A series of steps (moves) for each identified prospect which “move” prospects from – Attention to – Interest to – Desire to – Action• Continually moving to the next gift.©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 9. What is a Move?• Each “move” represents a discrete contact – Email – Phone call – Letter – Face-to-face conversation – Planned event• Background vs. foreground moves• Cultivation where solicitation does not occur• One move per month=twelve per year ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 10. Goal of Each Move• In cultivation, hard to quantify goal• Avoid goals that are too general• Be realistic—no major gift in three moves• Sample goals • Prospect accepts an invitation to a site visit • You gain better sense of how prospect feels about agency • You determine if pace of moves and goals is correct• Best possible and minimal acceptable outcomes ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 11. Plan Each Move• Review key points to cover during the move• List benefits that will appeal to prospect• What action are you asking prospect to take? What should be the next step in the process?• List questions you anticipate the prospect will ask as well as your answers ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 12. Build the Team• The prospect or moves manager – a staffer• Primary player – the person to whom the prospect is not able to say no• Natural partners – sources of information with strong relationships• Centers of Influence – additional sources of information ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 13. Role of the Moves Manager• Develop a strategy for prospect• Track prospect’s relationship to organization• Plan moves• Coordinate primary players, natural partners and centers of influence• Execute the plan• Reconfigure the strategy/refine the plan• Coordinate refined plan and execute new moves ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 14. ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 15. Manage the Moves Process1. Identify Prospects2. Gather partners to provide information3. Evaluate prospects4. Track moves5. Maintain accountability: The Management Team6. Keep score ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 16. 1. Identify Prospects• Review your current database of donors• Screen for frequency, recency, upgrades and “diamonds in the rough”• Engage your board collectively and individually—the hunt for sources of information and relationships©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 17. 2. Gather partners• Distribute a list of suspects• Ask your board members (preferably individually) • What is the prospect’s gift capacity rating? • Do you have access to this prospect—will they return your call? • Can you share information about this prospect? • Comments? ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 18. 3. Evaluate Prospects©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 19. Evaluate Prospects• Why is this individual a prospect?• In what has this person expressed interest?• For what purposes should funding be sought?• What is the giving capacity? (See donor research)• What is our present relationship? (Prior gifts & involvement)• Who are partners/centers of influence?• What is the “moves” plan for the next year? ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 20. 4. Track “Moves”• Single, most critical step in the process• Discipline and execution• Call Report• Follow-up call©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 21. Track “Moves”• Type of Call: • Next Steps – Foreground – Continue on PM List • Letter – Remove from PM List • Phone – Reassign to other PM • Email • In-person – Background• Purpose – Cultivation – Solicitation – Other• Summary—Detailed Notes©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 22. 5. Maintain Accountability Monthly face-to-face meeting of the major gifts management team with reports by each staff moves manager • Prospect Name • Capacity rating • Status—where are they on the continuum » Identified—10% » Information gathering—20% » Interested—50% » Involved—75% » Invested—100% » Post-gift stewardship—120%©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 23. Maintain Accountability • Date of last contact • Nature of contact • Next step • Comments from Moves Manager/Team©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 24. Keep Score: Weekly Report• Date of report• Number of prospects in the system• Number of moves planned• Number of contacts made• Dollar value of prospects “moved” this week• Dollar value of prior moves received this week ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 25. Do You Have Written Plans? Development Plan? Special Events Plan? Direct Response Plan Major Gifts Plan? Stewardship Plan?©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 26. Get Started1. Select 10 to 25 of your best prospects2. Create a file for each3. Collect easy-to-access research4. Identify natural partners5. Consult (confidentially) with natural partners6. Select a primary player for each prospect7. Develop strategy and gift objectives for each prospect ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 27. Get Started8. Plan five to ten moves for each prospect9. Implement moves and after each move a. Review and record b. Refine strategy c. Fine tune next move 10. Review status of each prospect monthly with the major gifts management team 11. Add and delete prospects as warranted©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 28. Manage Your Time• Four types of prospects 1. Those ready to make a major gift 2. Those needing some cultivation but who would consider a major gift in the near future 3. Those needing extensive cultivation 4. Those with capability, but little or no reason to give• Focus on those closest to the major gift decision—the 10% who can give 90% ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 29. ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 30. The 4 Disciplines of Execution1. Focus on Wildly Important Goals (WIGs) – Narrow the focus – Do not let the “day job” interfere with the narrowed focus – Choose only one or two goals at the most, e.g., • Number of gifts of $5,000+ increased by X% • Number of new gifts at $5,000+ • Amount of money in gifts of $5,000+ as compared to last year • “Card for Card” increase of all $1,000+ donors ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 31. The 4 Disciplines of Execution2. Act on Lead Measures – What enables the team to achieve the WIG – Differentiate between lag measures—have you achieved the goal—and lead measures—activities that indicate whether you are likely to achieve the goal • Lead measure—in your control—influences and predicts • Lag measure—out of your control—describes ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 32. The 4 Disciplines of Execution3. Keep a Compelling Scoreboard – Make it visible—agency-wide and graphically visual— and simple – Scoreboard that compels action • Here is where we need to be • Here is where we are right now ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 33. The 4 Disciplines of Execution3. (Continued)– WIG: Increase Major Gifts revenue from $X to $Y • Lead Measure: Complete four quality visits per staff person per week • Lead Measure: Ask for something on each visit • Lead Measure: Document quality follow-up after each visit within 48 hours©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 34. The 4 Disciplines of Execution4. Create a Cadence of Accountability – Frequent, recurring cycle of accounting for • Past performance • Planning to move forward – This is where execution actually happens – Accountability is shared ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 35. The 4 Disciplines of Execution4. (Continued) – We make commitments and are accountable to ourselves, each other, the team, our supervisor and the agency. – At least weekly • Account: Report on prior commitments • Review the scoreboard: Learn from successes and failures • Plan: Clear the path and make new commitments ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 36. ©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 37. Executing the Plan To obtain a free copy of Executing the Plan—A Discipline for Success, go to /executing-the-plan----a- discipline-for-success/©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 38. Mersky, Jaffe & Associates Financial and Human Resource Development Solutions for Nonprofits 800.361.8689 413.556.1074 fax OFFICES IN BOSTON AND NEW YORK©2013 Mersky, Jaffe & Associates
  • 39. Find listings for our current season of webinars and register at: NonprofitWebinars.comA Service Of: Sponsored by: