The most successful fundraising organizations have built a powerful fundraising partnership between the board, the executive, and the fundraising staff.
Boards play a critical role in fundraising. The most successful organizations know that, and have built a powerful partnership between the board, the executive, and the staff. Unfortunately, some boards resist their responsibility to actively engage in fundraising efforts, or simply don’t understand how to be most helpful.
According to the most recent edition of Leading with Intent, fundraising tops the list of board challenges, as it has since BoardSource first started collecting these data in 1994. It’s one of the most important aspects of board service, but it can be difficult to get all board members involved in its various activities, such as soliciting charitable contributions and working with the chief executive on a successful strategy.
At BoardSource, we know that successful board engagement in raising funds begins with an understanding of the board’s responsibilities to actively engage and to ensure that the organization has adequate resources to advance its mission. This means that — with the exception of those organizations that don’t rely on contributions to underwrite their important work — boards must be actively engaged in guiding and supporting these efforts. Boards — as a group — should understand and help inform resource development strategies and monitor progress against fund development plans. At the individual level, each board member should make a personally significant financial contribution in support of the organization’s work, and serve as an ambassador for the organization’s efforts by actively engaging as a volunteer in fundraising efforts.
The resources listed below cover many aspects of fundraising, including board and staff roles and responsibilities, the development process, techniques and methods, increasing board member engagement, and evaluating performance.
Guides, Tools, Templates, and Infographics
10 Tasks of a Development Committee
Capital Campaigns: The Board’s Role