Let's Raise Some Money
Insights from Karen Climer about fundraising and nonprofit organizations

A Date (Even If It Is Years From Now) Makes It Real

June 4th, 2014 by Karen Climer

Have you ever met a couple who has been engaged for some time, and when you ask them when their wedding date is, they say, “Oh, maybe some time next year or two.  We aren’t really in any rush.”?

Compare that with the couple who says, “We are getting married in July of 2016 after we both finish school.”

The first couple might also be waiting to finish school, but couple #2 seems more serious and committed.  Even though the date is quite a ways off, it seems more real – like they’ve actually thought about it.

Don’t worry — I am not turning this into a marriage blog. (I’m not exactly qualified for that one.)  I’m always thinking about campaigns.

A hospital wants to build a new emergency room.  They figure out the budget and begin approaching lead gift donors.  They tell the donor, “Oh, you know, we’ll build the new ER as soon as we raise all of the money.”

That sounds way too loosey goosey to me.  If I were making the lead gift (I can only speculate because I’ve never actually been asked to donate several million), I’m sure I would expect the campaign committee to say, “We plan to begin building next spring and to open our doors in the fall.”

Even if the date is far away, you need to have a date.  If you haven’t announced a date, the project isn’t real.  Once the date is set, deliver on it.  After all, you picked the date.

P.S. This isn’t true of just capital campaigns.  This is true of any project – whether in fundraising or anything else.

Posted in Capital Campaign, Planning

Leave a Comment

Please note: Comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.