Giving Compass’ Take:
• Kris Putnam-Walkerly, writing for Forbes, discusses six lessons for grantmakers and funders to consider as they start new philanthropic initiatives.
• These are important questions to consider before you fund a charitable effort, whether you’re a traditional grantmaker or individual donor.
• Here are some funder lessons from philanthropic failure.
There’s a lot of build up to that first big day – planning for cooler weather, getting school supplies, buying new clothes, reuniting with old friends, and making new ones.
That sense of excitement and anticipation can be found with funders who are launching a new initiative or an entirely new philanthropy. Here are six lessons from the back-to-school excitement for grantmakers:
- Don’t forget to complete your summer reading. In philanthropy it’s important to do your homework – to stay up on fundraising trends, local issues, and the latest waves of technology and how they affect charitable giving. Constant learning is essential to develop insight into what will help grantmakers better understand how they are doing in their work and how to improve.
- Shop early, but not exhaustively. Knowing what you’ll need in terms of resources and securing it before you launch a philanthropic initiative is critical. But you should also understand that there will be unanticipated needs once your work begins.
- Schedule playdates with new friends. Grantmakers should also be networking to get to know who the players will be involved in a new initiative. Well before you launch, find out who else is working in the same area. How could you leverage one another’s work? Where might you overlap?
- Plan your outfit for the first day ahead of time. Before you launch your initiative, consider the tools you’ll need to promote it — fact sheets, a website, a mobile app, a network of ambassadors, etc. Then make sure everything and everyone is prepped and ready to work it!
- Get a good night’s sleep. Starting a school day bleary-eyed and groggy is never a good idea. The same goes for when you are launching a new initiative when you’re exhausted and still recovering from another program or event can drain your energy and undermine your focus.
Read the full article about back to school lessons for grantmakers by Kris Putnam-Walkerly at Forbes.
Philanthropy is a complex topic, and others found these selections from the Impact Giving archive from Giving Compass to be good resources.
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