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Like a Symphony Conductor: The President's Role in a Campaign


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Once you have developed your strategic plan, how do you go about securing the money needed to implement it? Fortunately, workforce development initiatives are extremely appealing to both private and public sector funders, and capital campaigns are a highly effective approach to securing the multi-year pledges necessary to implement a long-term strategic plan. In this presentation, review insights from a college president who has successfully led campaigns at a small college and previously served as a chief advancement officer, as well as an experienced community college fundraising consultant, about how to build a winning team.

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Like a Symphony Conductor: The President's Role in a Campaign

  1. 1. Like a Symphony Conductor: The President’s Role in a Campaign John J. Rainone President, Dabney S. Lancaster Community College @dslccprez Joe April Partner, Convergent Nonprofit Solutions @JoeKnowsCCs
  2. 2. Agenda • Introductions • The President’s Role in a Campaign • Staff’s Role in a Campaign • Making the Ask • The Relationship between CEO/CDO • Five-Take Aways • Questions/Discussion
  3. 3. Donors don't give to institutions. . They invest in ideas and people in whom they believe. G.T. Smith
  4. 4. Resource the Campaign Money Staff Counsel
  5. 5. Allocate the Time… In Campaign: 50% Not in a Campaign: 25-40% Consultant Tip: How to “Manage Up”
  6. 6. What does this mean? Be visible • Serve • Attend • Participate • Meet • Visit Consultant Tip: Write a Social Accountability Report.
  7. 7. Nurture Relationships • With Chief Advancement Officer • With Foundation Board and Volunteers • With Donors Consultant Tip: Be yourself.
  8. 8. Make the ask: 1. Expect staff preparation 2. Prepare for objections 3 .Practice 4. ASK
  9. 9. Staff Preparation for a Solicitation Visit 1. Relationship history 2. Donor history 3. Summary of prospect research 4. Talking points for the meeting Consultant Tip: The Good – The Bad The Ugly
  10. 10. Worth it: Practice Meet with chief advancement officer and any other volunteer in the solicitation visit Outline an agenda for what each person will say Role play
  11. 11. Make the Ask •Talk less, listen more •Once you have made the ask…
  12. 12. STOP TALKING
  13. 13. Stewardship • Donors not only want to hear from presidents when an ask is made, they also want to hear from the president after the gift or pledge is made. • Make time to say thank you. Consultant Tip: Little pieces of knowledge.
  14. 14. •Feasibility study or not? •Counsel •Role of volunteers Brass & Woodwinds (nuts and bolts] elements of your masterpiece Consultant Tip: Hidden benefits of a feasibility study
  15. 15. • Staffing • Database • Must have CAO number one priority Brass & Woodwinds [nuts and bolts] elements of your masterpiece… Consultant Tip: Become a parking garage phone user.
  16. 16. President’s Dos & Don'ts Do: • Invest to get a return. • Develop relationships • Chief Development Officer (CDO): executive leadership/ strategic planning
  17. 17. President’s Dos & Don'ts Do: • CDO with experience and training (i.e. CFRE) • Practice making an ask • Get homework from IA office • Research on prospect or donor • Talking points • Pre-visit briefing
  18. 18. President’s Dos & Don'ts Don’t: • Silo • Avoid fundraising responsibilities • Fear getting a “no” *Let it be an opportunity to ask: • Is it the project? • Is it the timing? • Is it the amount? Consultant Tip: Does No mean I don’t Know?
  19. 19. Five Take-Aways 1. The success of a campaign is directly in correlation with the commitment of the college president 2. The president must make time for campaign preparation, solicitation visits and stewardship 3. The campaign must be resourced adequately with appropriate staffing and funding 4. For presidents new to fundraising, seek knowledge about fundraising principles and practice making an ask 5. Partner and think big with your Chief Development Officer Consultant Tip: Find a Mentor.
  20. 20. Like a Symphony Conductor: The President’s Role in a Campaign John J. Rainone @dslccprez Joe April @JoeKnowsCCs