This car. Goeth would have bought this car. Why did I keep the car? Ten people right there. Ten people. Ten more people. This pin. Two people. This is gold. Two more people. He would have given me two for it, at least one. One more person. A person, Stern. For this. I could have gotten one more person... and I didn't! And I... I didn't!
We expect the donor to get most of their information from their own experience as an audience member, and ask themselves whether they support the services provided and values promoted. The following questions are supplementary.
* How would your budget likely change if you had more revenue than expected? Less?
* How much of your revenue comes from fees paid (e.g., ticket prices, admission) vs. donations?
* Do you have data on your audience - how many people visit, what their interests are, whether they're local or tourists, how happy they are with the experience you provide and what they'd like to see changed/added?
* What is your "audience per dollar of expenses" and how does it compare to that of other organizations? If it is lower, why do you think this is? (Note: we think there can be many good reasons to support an organization with a low "audience per dollar," but we think this is a metric for donors to check and be aware of. They should know whether they're supporting an organization that is unusually "niche" or perhaps just unpopular.)
Come on. This is basic stuff.
Many leaders of high-growth nonprofits experienced a pivotal point when they needed to bring in new talent. Typically, there was a strong tension between promoting internal, often program-oriented employees and hiring external candidates with deep experience in areas like marketing or logistics. Introducing new blood into critical roles, though vital, is usually trying.
When Patrick Lawler arrived at Youth Villages in 1980 as the new chief executive officer, he was just 24 years old. “I’d been a probation officer,” recalls Lawler. “I’d never seen a budget. I didn’t know anything about management. What I knew about was how to take care of tough kids. For my first two or three years, I acted like we were a charity and we had to take in just enough money to pay the bills. Around 1982, one of our board members told me how we had to have margins or we couldn’t run our business. Not a charity, a business. We were running on extremely limited resources and raising money via yard sales, car washes, and garage sales. That board member opened my eyes to a broader future.”
Timing can have a major influence over a nonprofit’s ability to raise money and to grow. Some nonprofits have the good fortune of being founded during a period of heightened interest in their mission. Take environmental and international aid groups, for example. About 70 percent of all U.S. environmental groups over $50 million in size were founded in or after 1970. And about 40 percent of all U.S. international aid groups were founded since 1970. By contrast, only 15 percent of all educational groups and 16 percent of all arts and culture organizations of that size were founded during that period.