Get Rid of the Tin Cup Mentality

fundraising roadmap Feb 22, 2021

One of the greatest people I ever met was Desmond Tutu. It was at an AFP conference, where he talked about the noble profession of fundraising. Too many people, sometimes even fundraisers themselves, see themselves as beggars. We need to abolish the “Tin cup mentality” that often consumes those in the nonprofit sector. We sometimes look at fundraising as a necessary evil at best. Please get that idea out of your head NOW.

Fundraisers give people the opportunity to participate in the great work their nonprofits are doing every day—savings lives, changing lives, protecting our earth, reaching out to those who have no one to turn to. Start thinking about your career as the most noble profession you could find.

If you’re having trouble convincing your board, your CEO or the rest of your staff, you need to begin inculcating the Culture of Philanthropy in your nonprofit. Sign up for our newsletter, if you don’t already receive it, and ask for the Assessing Your Philanthropic Culture form. You might be surprised to earn that small things like the location of your office, the title of your chief fundraiser, can make or break your philanthropic culture. And donors notice these things. If you need help, bring in a consultant to talk with your staff and board about how important philanthropy is in your organization.

To learn more about getting started in or advancing in your fundraising career, take my course, Fundraising as a Career, sign up here

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