Donor development is more like farming than hunting. Most people we work with want to connect with a donor, make a pitch, get a check, and be done. Like, move on with their lives and their mission without looking back. Sound familiar?

But receiving and running is not always how it works. And honestly, that's not a healthy approach.

In farming, there's an element of patience and work over time to develop the end result. It's important to start thinking about donor relationships as long-term. So, let's start thinking about donor relationships as partnerships, or even friendships.

A little tip I often give to people I coach is to learn something new about a donor with every interaction.

If you have the opportunity to spend extended time with a donor, even better! Learn all you can about them. I do this by simply asking questions that start with "what" or "how". These types of questions tend to be open ended, giving you way more insight than "yes" or "no" answers.

It's amazing how much you'll learn and even more amazing how valued your donor will feel when you seek to learn about them as much as they are learning about you.

 

Russell Cooper, Co-Founder

As co-founder of Tailored, I am dedicated to developing generosity in the Body of Christ. This is why I'm passionate about creating strategic partnerships with disciple-making organizations, as well as coaching leaders. When I have free time, I'm watching America’s Test Kitchen and trying out new recipes on my wife, my most dependable food critic.


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