If you follow me on Twitter @AmyEisenstein, you already know that I was at the most amazing AFP (Association of Fundraising Professionals) conference this week in Chicago.
One of the sessions I attended was called “From Bonsai to Redwood – Cutting Edge Thinking from the Frontiers of Philanthropy.” The speaker was Jon Duschinsky. I wish you could have been there with me.
Changing the Fundraising Paradigm
Mr. Duschinsky spoke about changing the fundraising paradigm and how organizations need to work on building movements around missions and lose their acute focus on raising money. (It was a fundraising conference, after all, so this was fairly revolutionary for most of us.)
The message was simple: If you build a movement, the money will follow.
He posed the question, “What is the change you want to achieve in the world?” And he gave an example from an organization he had worked for whose mission was simply:
How many of us can say our missions that quickly, succinctly, comprehensively and confidently?
He showed us how philanthropic dollars comprise only 2% of the GDP in the US and worldwide. So how can we change the world with only 2% of the dollars? In order to be truly successful, he argued, we need to access the other 98%.
The way to do this, Jon suggested, is to build a sustainable business model in the philanthropic sector. And corporate social responsibility should be an investment, not a cost.
Back to the paradigm shift…
ATTENTION COMPANIES: The more good you do, the more you will make. And the good you do must be connected to your brand.
This session got me thinking about how the organizations I work with could benefit from this paradigm shift. How are they positioned to help change the world? As a fundraising consultant, I have a special opportunity to help organizations clarify their mission and really build momentum into their movement. And as Jon notes, the money will follow.
Jon’s material was truly inspirational and wonderful food for thought. I wanted to share a piece of it with you to the best of my ability. I apologize in advance if I’ve unknowingly misrepresented any of his information or intent.
Visit Jon Duschinsky’s Website
I strongly urge you to check out Jon’s “reframing fundraising” website at Be the Change.
So how is your organization changing the world? What’s your super-simple mission that lends itself to raising more money through the good you do? Tell me all about it the comments.