Listen up, all you new-to-prospect-development folks (and anyone who has a brand-new researcher on staff)!
Great prospect development training sessions are coming up SOON (like, next week and next month!) and you really can’t afford to miss them. Why? [Read more…]
At the most recent NEDRA conference, Meghan Hakanson and Amy Begg of Harvard University delivered a session to a packed room on how they created pivot tables to sort through mountains of data to identify reunion prospects. What had session participants clamoring for more was the nitty-gritty details of how Meghan and Amy actually did it. So I asked them to share their project with us – step by step – so that we can all try it, too!
Huge thanks to both of them for their generous willingness to share, and to Meghan especially for writing this article.
Have you ever found yourself sorting through mountains of prospects and thought, “There must be a better way to do this!” and at the same time, “but I don’t have a lot of time!”? We found ourselves saying and thinking the same things to each other as we embarked on a new project for our Reunion and Annual Campaigns team here at Harvard. [Read more…]
This week we welcome HBG Senior Researcher Heather Hoke to share her knowledge on the blog. Every year, nearly a third of attendees at our professional association conference are brand new to our field. The Apra conference in July is one of the best places for new researchers to find in-depth training and unparalleled opportunities to network, test-drive critical resources, and learn from experienced colleagues. If you don’t have the budget this year but still need information to get you started, Heather’s article will help launch you with lots of advice and resources.
I have been a development researcher for more than 15 years and have had the opportunity to meet many new researchers starting out in our profession who need to learn the basics. It’s an exciting time for them, but our field can be a bit overwhelming.
I have met folks just starting out in a non-profit or educational institution with no prior experience or training on how to do prospect research to advance fundraising. And sometimes, to make things more difficult, there may be no researcher on staff to guide them. [Read more…]
It’s that moment when you realize that you have spent (1) way too much time to (2) find a piece of information that you firmly believe must be out there – hiding. Behind some paywall. And now your report is sitting there. Unfinished.
It’s Prospect Research FOMO. Fear of Missing infO*.
It’s frustrating, disheartening, and maddening to have wasted time and feel that, at the end of the day, you just couldn’t make the Boolean logic deliver.
Especially when everything is online, right?
As I mentioned here on the blog a couple of weeks ago, a growing number of us on the HBG team are reading David Callahan’s latest book, The Givers; Wealth, Power, and Philanthropy in a New Gilded Age, and we meet weekly to talk about the latest chapter we’ve read.
Our discussions start with the book but we usually veer into the news of the day, pulling in observations from relevant and related articles from the New York Times, the Stanford Social Innovation Review, HistPhil, and more. [Read more…]
This week we welcome my colleague, Tara McMullen, to the blog-stage to talk about a type of data that’s particularly tough to wrangle, but totally worth the effort. Here’s Tara on the rewards to be found in digging through unstructured data (and some great places to find it).
In my work, I find myself constantly perusing social pages, local and regional news publications, and text-heavy lists and articles about wealthy and powerful people to try to pull out valuable “soft” information from these sources of unstructured data.
The information found in these sources is often invaluable in providing insight into a prospect’s relationships and connections, non-profit and civic affiliations, family members, neighbors, community groups, hobbies and activities (like golf or boating), and – of particular interest to those of us in the prospect development field – potential philanthropic interests. [Read more…]
Very innocently. But making you feel guilty.
That work-book you bought.
I’ve got a few books like that on my office shelf. Some that I’ve started and abandoned after an interested afternoon, and others that I haven’t even cracked open yet. (but I will! I swear!)
But now, a solution.
Last week, some of my HBG colleagues and I – independent of each other – watched a vidcast of David Callahan and Emmett Carson in a fascinating, spirited, and sometimes provocative debate sponsored by Philanthropy New York. Callahan is the founder and editor of Inside Philanthropy, and author of the new book The Givers; Wealth, Power, and Philanthropy in a New Gilded Age. Carson is president of the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, the largest community foundation in the world, with $8 billion+ in assets. [Read more…]
You may think that’s an outrageous amount (and it is) but I’m saying it anyway. Let me explain why.
First of all, many professionals in the world have one main job. They repair things in a human body or in an automobile. They speak in front of cameras and explain what a company means to do, or what a politician did do. They deliver mail, or babies. They build houses or computer programs. [Read more…]