Login   |     

Inspired Development by Randy Bronkema

Randy Bronkema's avatar

“No” Might Just Be What You Need to Grow

How do you feel about hearing the word “no”? Most of us hate it. But what I have found through the years is that even though we hate it, “no” can be one of the best words for growth in our ministries. Think about this, hearing “no” from someone only means that nothing has changed. And, when we are not afraid to hear the word “no”, we are willing to ask. And, when we ask, although we still hear “no”, sometimes, we hear also hear “yes”. And, one unexpected “yes”, can change everything. Let me challenge you to add something to your routine, begin asking for referrals whenever you meet with people, particularly existing donors. Remember, everyone is connected in some way. Either through friends, family, work, or social ties, everyone is connected. But, while YOU are not connected to everybody, somebody is! We need to establish asking as a habit; letting go of our fear of “no” and anticipating the excitement of &ldquo ...

Read the rest of entry »

Randy Bronkema's avatar

Coach Wooden’s Strategy to Find Happiness

I came across this the other day and was so impressed with Coach Wooden’s strategy for happiness that I just had to share it with you. My prayer is that making and keeping these nine promises will help you on your journey to success. Nine Promises to Make and Keep 1. Promise yourself that you will talk health, happiness, and prosperity as often as possible.  2. Promise yourself to make all your friends know there is something in them that is special and that you value. 3. Promise to think only of the best, to work only for the best, and to expect only the best in yourself and others. 4. Promise to be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own. 5. Promise yourself to be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind. 6. Promise to forget the mistakes of the past and press on to greater achievements in the future. 7. Promise to wear a cheerful appearance at all times and give every person you meet a smile. 8. Promise to give so much time improving y ...

Read the rest of entry »

Randy Bronkema's avatar

Changing Your Existing Culture

1980: A manager is needed to keep things consistent or the same. 1990: Individual Leaders are needed because everything is changing. 2000: Team leaders are needed because leadership is multi-faceted The saying goes, “the only thing that stays the same is that everything changes.” And it is so true! Our role as leaders and managers has consistently morphed to meet the changing culture that we live in. It is an undeniable that for you to succeed, you must be willing to change. And, as you change, you will find that you have the power to impact the culture that you are in. Try these six things this week, and you will start changing your culture today.  1. Let people know you need them  This is such a lost art! "Good leaders make people feel that they're at the very heart of things, not at the periphery." Warren Bennis 2. Create a memory and visit it often Success will breed success! 3. Give others a reputation to uphold Build people up! It has been shown that 80% of ...

Read the rest of entry »

Randy Bronkema's avatar

More Ways to Reach Out

There is more to major donor stewardship than sending thank you notes and gift receipts after donors make a gift. Thinking in new ways will lead us to reach out and make contact with donors in as many ways, and as many times, as we can. Here are a few ways to cultivate major gift prospects beyond the basics. Establish a Thank You Program Get your Chairperson of the Board, and your Executive Director involved! Here is one example of a thank you program: A gift of $5,000+: your Chairperson of the Board makes a thank you call A gift of $1,000+: your Executive Director makes a thank you call  All gifts from $100 to $1,000: divide up for staff to call and thank personally Personally Invite Donors Have board members personally invite prospective major donors to programs, events and concerts. By using your major donors and board members to network, you will find the most effective way to increase donors and your bottom line. Use the Talent o ...

Read the rest of entry »

Randy Bronkema's avatar

Be Prepared on the Right Side of the Campaign

With a little thought and preparedness on this side of a campaign, organizations can be ready for success. With only partial preparedness, things will be harder than they need to be and results can be crippling. I do not believe I am overstating the importance that feasibility studies need to be used for both their external revelations and their internal insight.  External data will give your organization important information about the readiness of the community toward your campaign and it should be used to determine next steps. However, if the study only looks at your nonprofit's external capacity to support a campaign, you are starting with problems. It is equally important to look internally to measure campaign preparedness. Every campaign, in its drawing phase, needs to be able to answer these questions: Is the board ready for the campaign? Are the executive and/or fundraising departments prepared? Your organization is in for a hammering if you only go only on the word of the community. An inter ...

Read the rest of entry »

Randy Bronkema's avatar

Prepare Your Board to Be Fundraisers

If I told you that you may be missing out on an opportunity to raise funds, you would listen right? The truth is, if you have not prepared and equipped your board to be a part of the fund raising process, you are missing a significant opportunity to raise funds! Think about your current board. Is it filled with people that believe in your ministry, people vested in your organization and men and women that have committed to the purpose and the vision of what you are trying to accomplish? If you said yes, then your board is full of fundraisers waiting to be trained to go.  The duties of your board should include five primary tasks: 1. Protect the mission of the organization 2. Hire and evaluate the Executive Director 3. Establish policy guidelines 4. Help accomplish the vision of the organization 5. Be a powerful part of the fundraising efforts The first four tasks are somewhat easy and expected; but fundraising, that’s another story. A lot of people are initially intimidated by the thought of ...

Read the rest of entry »

Randy Bronkema's avatar

Believe and Plan for Bigger Gifts!

If you have a project or campaign that you need to have funded, push yourself to be purposeful about your approach. Donors are just like you and I, they get stuck in the same rut of giving and need to be challenged and energized from time to time to consider giving more. Let me encourage you to use these five key factors - whether you are planning a new campaign or in the midst of one. Focusing on these things will energize everyone, including yourself, to believe for bigger things!  Initiate Donor Involvement: Donor participation is critical so be willing to start the conversations, and then LISTEN! Hear what your donors are saying about how they could further your organization’s mission. Then invite the most passionate to join you in a partnership to bring those ideas to life! Inspire: When planning a campaign or a project, consider a request that is bold and idealistic. Goals grounded in realism may seem less exciting to donors and they won’t stand out among c ...

Read the rest of entry »

Randy Bronkema's avatar

Your Choice: Mentor or Lower Productivity

I just finished a wonderful book, “The Element” by Dr. Ken Robinson. The book challenges some of the conventional forms of education which was thought provoking for sure, but the part that caught my eye was the discussion of mentoring. Mentoring is close to my heart and Robinson does a great job bringing some things to light. I want to share the ideas of mentoring with you because things are going on inside of your organization that are stifling your progress and effectiveness. Consider the different roles that mentoring could have in your organization. Recognition. In my travels to different ministries I see people who are tired and overworked. I see those same issues with your major donors. Have you taken the time to recognize the people around you for their work and their talent? Recognition does something powerful as it reinforces talents and gifts in individuals and strengthens them to continue on and excel. When people work in the areas that focus on their strengths, they become excited abo ...

Read the rest of entry »

Randy Bronkema's avatar

Setting Up The Chairs

Leadership has so many components, and when done with purpose and faith can be a catalyst for change and growth inside of each organization. I recently heard a story about Tony Dungy, former coach for the Indianapolis Colts, told from a chaplain that had been invited to lead a pregame chapel service. This chaplain had decided to arrive early. He walked into the chapel and saw the coach moving around the room setting up the chairs for the service. He immediately offered to help Tony get things ready. But, the response was different than he expected because Tony refused the help. “No thanks,” he said, “I like to do this by myself. I know where each man sits. I know what each one is going through and how each one is hurting. I pray over each man’s chair as I set it up.” I am sure the chaplain was moved by the picture of a head coach setting up chairs for his men in order to truly serve them in the most important ways. I know that I was. The picture is so perfect and powerful. Tony ...

Read the rest of entry »

Randy Bronkema's avatar

Five Rules for Finding More Major Gifts

I would like to start off today’s post by reminding you that what you are doing matters. You are a part of a vision that was established to change the world that we live in. You are impacting lives and making a difference. You have been given the responsibility of continuing the good work of your mission. Don’t quit, continue to educate yourself with tools that will make you better at what you do. Continue to deliver the message of positive hope and direction to your team. Continue to reach out to donors, build relationships and keep dreaming! These five rules for finding more major gifts will help you continue on the path you have begun out on! 1. Expand the base of generous annual fund donors. Focus on generating more annual fund donors that are able to give $1,000 or more. As you spend time cultivating a relationship with these donors you will find they are capable and willing to gift in addition to their annual donation for special purposes. 2. Get more people involved as volunteers. Identi ...

Read the rest of entry »

Comments
  1. Re: What is Your Purpose?

    Putting the passion back into in our ministries! Great message, Randy! Paul summed up our participation...

    -- Will Stevens

Inspired Development
by Randy Bronkema
Subscribe To
Inspired Development

Get the latest updates in your email box automatically.

Login       Register
About Randy

I've spent most of my life helping non-profit organizations pursue their vision. My passion is to help non-profits reach their communities and grow discipleship through development.

My work with Christian universities, Christian academies, missions groups, radio stations and local churches really gets me going. Underneath all the work is a real desire to see leaders grab hold of the opportunity God has given them.

Whether major gift development, annual fund plans or donor strategy, I rely on many of the business disciplines from the corporate workplace at JC Penney and Amway Corporation.

I enjoy working with young men to become strong leaders in their families, workplaces and churches. I started The Timothy Project a few years ago to work with men in my local community.

You can find out more about how I help non-profit organizations and how to contact me here.

Thanks for commenting on my blog,

Randy