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

“I’m So Glad You Are Here.”

June 30th, 2014 by Karen Climer

There’s a CEO in town who runs a very large organization with thousands of employees.  Every time I see her at an event in the community, she says, “Hi Karen.  I’m so glad you are here.”  She says this whether it’s her company hosting the event or she is a guest.  No matter what, she is glad to see me there.

I’m going to be completely candid here…sometimes my presence at an event contributes nothing except warm blood.  I am there to support a client, but really the event would go just as well whether I am there or not.  If I did contribute to the event, my work happened way before that day.

At a recent groundbreaking, I was standing in the 100-degree weather.  My suit was sticking to my skin.  Marble-sized sweat beads were falling from my forehead.  I was trying to listen to the program, but really I was wondering if groundbreaking ceremonies were invented by the dry cleaning industry.  (There were a lot of sweaty people at this event!)  Then I run into my favorite CEO and she says, “Karen, I’m so glad you’re here.”  Wow!  That makes me glad I’m here too.

She doesn’t run a nonprofit organization.  If she did, I’d donate money because she likes me.  Did you get that?  I didn’t say I would donate because I like her or because it’s a great mission.  I would donate because she likes me.  I would donate because she remembers my name and makes me glad I attended an outdoor event in the blazing Florida summer.

Be sure your donors and others are glad they attended your event.  It takes more than a thank you note a few days later that says, “Thanks for attending the event.”  When you see them at the event, call them by name, thank them for coming.  I know you do this for the major donors, but do it for everyone.

Not sure how to remember names?  We’ll talk about that next time.

Posted in Cultivation, Events, Relationships

2 Responses

  1. Lauren

    That’s a great stewardship/cultivation reminder! Whether the person be a donor or a colleague, it’s great to recognize and be recognized. It’s a small town so those efforts don’t go unnoticed. (Obviously.)

    And it’s easy to see why she’s your favorite CEO.

  2. Ron

    Where did you learn all this wisdom? You are sooooooo correct.

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