Friday, 13 July 2012

Enlist and Involve Spouses or Partners - It Pays Off

Involving spouses or partners is a powerful tool when it comes to both cultivating prospects and stewardship of your donors. Major gifts are almost always joint decisions, so pay attention to and acknowledge the spouse or partner.

One of my recent major gifts was from the spouse of a well known philanthropist. They spoke very openly to me, how their spouse was perpetually the one to be ‘asked’ for donations. They spoke of how they themselves are now a retired professional and had a trust fund of their own to distribute as they saw fit.

They continued on to tell me how their spouse regularly gave to their alma mater but it wasn't until the institution involved, cultivated and asked both of them that they gave a seven figure gift. 

                                                        Alma Mater Statue, University of Illinois

Never underestimate the power of cultivating the spouse or partner. Organise events and occasions that include them and get to know their interests, hobbies, what non-profits they support, etc.

Ensure their names are included in any lists and listen to what they say, ask them for advice and involve them in the decision making. 

How do you involve spouses at your non-profit organisation?

All comments to Niamh, @niamhini

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