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Inspired Development by Randy Bronkema

Posts Tagged 'Miscellaneous'

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A New Focus

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A few days ago I pulled off the expressway to find a man holding a sign “Need food, will you help?” I responded in a way that I fear most of us do, I judged him. Without considering him, my first thoughts were, “This is a scam. He will use the money to buy drugs, cigarettes, or alcohol.” My second thoughts were even more shameful, “If I give him my $10 what will I do for lunch today”? Yuck. And then I was reminded, Christ did not come to judge the world, but to save the world. Christ came to meet the need! So now I have to ask myself, why did I judge him? Why didn’t I consider his need? And when did my needs become more important than those around me? Not fun things to ponder, but how gracious that I have the opportunity! How gracious to be reminded of what life can be about! So, I stare at the hard truth, somewhere in the midst of all of this I started living for myself and not for others. And, I think we have all fallen into this to some degree, we have been basi ...

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Share Your Achievements

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What a great thing it would be to find a way to communicate to our donors the achievements that their monies are directly supporting. Each year my wife and I give faithfully to our local church, we also give to a few other Christian non-profit organizations that are important to us. I am amazed that we typically receive no information about how those organizations are using our money to further the kingdom of Christ, and I would love to hear how my gift is being used!  I have seen some non-profits produce some sort of annual report that talks about the organization’s overall happenings, achievements and challenges. And while this is an important document, there must be less expensive, more effective ways to communicate to our donor community.  Let’s take a minute and brainstorm some things that we could include in this type of report:  Gifts that helped accomplish a particular goal  Names of donors who gave at a higher level  ...

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“No” Might Just Be What You Need to Grow

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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 ...

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Changing Your Existing Culture

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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 ...

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More Ways to Reach Out

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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 ...

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Setting Up The Chairs

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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 ...

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Five Rules for Finding More Major Gifts

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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 ...

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Don’t Let a Bad Economy Shape Your Vision

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I want to remind you not to let the forecast for a bad economy stop you from going after your vision. With the nation’s economy in its current state, it could be easy and natural to back off the dreams of what could be and begin to work out of fear. Please don’t let that happen! I spent 15 years at Amway Corporation, and each month our President Rich DeVos would hold mandatory employee meetings. This was the early eighties and I was fresh out of college and the economy was terrible; interest rates were over 14%, unemployment was 14% and inflation was 12%. During one of these employee meetings a young man stood to his feet and asked Mr. DeVos the following question, “Why is this corporation spending 65 million dollars on a downtown Grand Rapids hotel in an economy as bad as this?” I will never forget the way that Mr. DeVos answered his question, “Young man I’m not participating in your bad economy!” What Mr. DeVos shared then is still true today, and will always ...

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Six Parts of a Solicitation Call

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At some point your solicitation calls are supposed to lead you to the “ask”. Many stop short of this part because they forget, because it wasn’t planned ahead of time, or because they are afraid. Whatever the reason when the “ask” isn’t purposed into your visits, you are going to miss out on opportunities, relationships that last, and investments into your organization. So, how can you help your team master this step? Here are the six parts of a solicitation call. When your team is prepared and they understand their part, they should be able to react to any obstacles that may surface during the call. 1. Know your prospect so you can begin and lead the conversation. Get your contact to talk about themselves and the things that they are interested in. 2. Ask questions to make the conversation meaningful. Remember that open-ended questions are going to draw your prospect out and keep them talking. 3. Listen, listen, listen! Careful listening will give clues to next steps a ...

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Capital Results Without a Capital Campaign!

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Do you have projects to accomplish, but are not quite ready to launch a capital campaign? Capital campaigns can be both overwhelming and unnecessary. Thinking outside of the box can give you a boost and bring some real fun and excitement back to your team and your donors.  Where do you start? Make a project list, or better yet, a “wish list”. Don’t be shy – put everything on it, items that are $10 or $10 million dollars. Think little and big, what things would be beneficial to your project: maintenance items, new transmitters, capital improvement. This list becomes your tool to begin exploring funding interest and gets things started. So don’t leave anything off the list; no matter how unrealistic you may believe it to be. Still need help, try asking yourself and your team what projects or items are in your strategic plan and consider things like endowments, equipment, supplies, program and personnel needs. Now you are on your way. Your list has been drawn up and you have ...

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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

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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