The cavalry can be a heroine, a hero, a bunch of dusty dudes on horses, or a squad of geeky introverts, but you only have to look at every movie ever made in Hollywood to know that when help is needed, it will come. [Read more…]
This week we are honored to welcome guest contributor, Ian MacQuillin, founder and director of Rogare, the fundraising think tank at Plymouth University’s Hartsook Centre for Sustainable Philanthropy. As I mentioned a few weeks ago, a serious change threatens to alter the landscape for fundraising and prospect research in the UK. I’m not succumbing to hyperbole when I say that very soon wealth screenings and possibly even prospect research could be greatly curtailed or eliminated altogether. Unless awareness is raised and the momentum shift is altered, the impact on the charity landscape will be devastating. I am grateful that Ian agreed to share not only what’s happening in the UK, but also how these changes could impact us in North America. I hope you will join me in sharing this article socially to help educate our peers. ~Helen
It’s possible that during the course of 2017, using Google to research a potential donor will be declared illegal by Britain’s data protection regulator. [Read more…]
I’m going to get to the top posts of 2016 in just a second, but as we bid goodbye to 2016 – a rollercoaster year if ever there was one – we at The Helen Brown Group wanted to take a moment to say thank you.
To our clients, thank you for making 2016 our best year yet. Your missions – and your personal dedication to them – inspire us to do our best work for you. Our appreciation also goes out to the kind folks who point others in our direction – grateful thanks for your referrals.
To our 1,200+ Intelligent Edge subscribers and to the readers who drop by, thanks for signing up, for reading, and for your comments, both on and offline. Two years ago, our mailing list comprised 65 hearty souls! We couldn’t be prouder of the way our readership has grown or thank our wonderful guest bloggers enough. Thank you.
We also really appreciate our vendor partners, who make the great tools we use and who share our commitment to using quality information to make the world a better place.
And to our colleagues in the prospect development community – thank you so much for your support and for the part you play in building and growing this wonderful profession.
And now, to our top five… [Read more…]
What’s going on, briefly? The British Information Commissioner’s Office’s (ICO) levied substantial fines against two large and well-respected British charities, publicly berated and shamed them for – amongst other things – conducting wealth screenings and prospect research. It’s a very worrisome time in the UK for our colleagues right now, and the fundraising community over here should take note – and provide moral support.
More on this developing story will be found here on the Intelligent Edge, but in the meantime, please take a moment to visit the Further Reading section at the end of this post to get yourself caught up on the ICO ruling and the UK fundraising community’s reaction to it. [Read more…]
This week my colleague Grace Chandonnet points us to great research on the benefits of collaboration and shares some of the methods we use (and you can, too) to take advantage of deep knowledge and resources around you.
The events of the recent past have inspired divisiveness and mistrust amongst the citizens of the United States and even the world. For the sake of my own wellbeing, I’ve been trying to focus on the things in my life that make me feel connected to something positive. Fortunately for me, not only am I connected to work that makes a real difference in the world, but I have an amazing group of colleagues who are always ready and willing to collaborate.
COLLABORATION’S MULTIPLE BENEFITS
According to Murali Krishna, HR Service Administrator at IBM, “Collaboration not only equals a happier workforce, it represents an educated one. This is because it naturally inspires a sense of community within an organization, meaning that employees feel almost like they are a part of a family. Additionally, collaboration allows employees to learn from each other and the bosses.” [Read more…]
This week we welcome HBG Senior Researcher and Efficiency Lead Kenny Tavares. Since he took on the new role of Efficiency Tsar this summer, Kenny has identified some off-the shelf tools and has also created some beauties on his own (yay macros!) to solve some long-simmering inefficiencies in our work. Getting from A to B can become much quicker when you take the time to sit back, identify the inefficiencies, and dream up the ideal solutions. In this week’s blog post, Kenny shares what he’s been learning about managing time. ~Helen
“Be More Productive,” “100 Time Management Tips” and “Increase Your Productivity” are some likely headlines you’ve seen in your LinkedIn or Twitter feeds. It seems there are an unending number of tips and tricks for improving your efficiency at work. However, for many of us, the idea of embracing even a few new ideas – never mind 20, 50 or 100 ideas – can seem like a daunting task. Some of these recommendations have been passed along so many times it’s hard to know where they came from or if they even make sense in the modern workplace. Do the authors of these articles even use these tips themselves? Reading all these lists can seem antithetical to being productive. [Read more…]
Fundraising is certainly not a new profession, but the study of it is. As Ben Rymer pointed out in his recent blog post “if money is power, why has philanthropy not been a more popular field of inquiry for social scientists?”
Between the jaw-droppingly huge philanthropic initiatives that have been recently announced, the rise of impact investing, venture philanthropy, and the political and social implications this new stratosphere of evolutionary philanthropy brings, we need intelligent commentary and creative centers of study to help translate what all of this means. [Read more…]
Sometimes secondary research just doesn’t cut it. As fundraising professionals, we all know it’s important for us to understand the context of our prospects’ lives. But as much as you can read about private equity, venture capital, and all the other finance-related professions, nothing beats actually talking with people in that industry to find out how they would like to be cultivated and stewarded. I’m particularly delighted this week to shine a light on a project that University of Chicago researchers, Amelia Aldred and Namrata Padhi, undertook to interview professionals in the finance industry. In this week’s article, Amelia and Namrata share the questions and answers about these professionals that we all want to hear. ~Helen
The problem and our solution
In 2015, our prospect research team hit a wall when it came to understanding venture capital and private equity professionals. Like many of our research colleagues, our team read hundreds of articles about venture capital and private equity industries but we couldn’t find information specifically about venture capital and private equity professionals’ attitudes and behaviors regarding philanthropy, nor could we find information about compensation and wealth beyond a general industry overview.
Our solution? Change our research methods. Instead of reading, we directly interviewed venture capital and private equity professionals about their career path, compensation and wealth accumulation, networks, and how all of these factors affected their approach to giving. [Read more…]
We’ve been somewhat distracted here in the US with our own looming election, so perhaps we can be forgiven for forgetting that another monumental, electrically charged election nicknamed ‘Brexit’ happened two months ago this week in the United Kingdom. If your nonprofit has constituents in the UK or Europe, this will be much on their minds because it has likely already had a significant impact on their personal finances. Now that the dust has settled a bit, I asked my colleague Marc Whitmore at More Partnership (that’s him in the photo) to give us some insight on what’s happening with Brexit through the philanthropy and fundraising lens. It’s a fascinating read – enjoy! ~Helen
What the hell happened, Britain?
Quite. Well, in May 2015, the UK elected a Government with the manifesto pledge to hold a referendum with a simple question: should the UK remain in or leave the European Union? That referendum took place on 23 June 2016, and 51.9% of those who voted, voted to leave the EU. [Read more…]
I love Twitter. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve been alerted to a key article or wealth list or study that, because of Twitter, I heard about the moment it was published. Not only does Twitter give me an edge on the news but it allows me to communicate and share information instantly with a group of people I’ve grown to admire and rely on for information about the philanthropic sector and the world in general. In today’s guest post, my colleague, Angie Herrington, shares what she loves best about Twitter, and how it helped her to be her best in her career. You can follow Angie on Twitter at @HerringtonEnotA ~Helen
You can’t miss the negative red number taunting you over the allotted characters. So I combine words into contractions and remove a hashtag. Ok, that took care of 5 characters, but I still need to get from -43 to 0. [Read more…]