When you work on something that goes on for years and involves most every part of your organization and your donor base, you have to manage complexity!
Really, “managing complexity” doesn’t come close to describing what it’s like to tame the multi-headed beast that is your capital campaign. (If you are into mythology, think Hercules and the Hydra.)
Making your campaign even more challenging is the fact that you’re expected to manage it all while you are doing every other part of your job. I’ll bet that even before your board started talking about a campaign, you didn’t find yourself sitting in your office wondering what to do!
And the worst part of beginning a capital campaign is that you feel confused and scattered.
The Gift Range Chart: A Supporting Structure for Your Capital Campaign
This post presents a simple tool — the Gift Range Chart — and shows you how it can become a central supporting structure for your entire campaign. If developed and used properly, it will give you a clear sense of what needs to be done and when.
Even better, your Executive Director and your entire board will understand what it’s going to take to execute a successful capital campaign.
What Is a Gift Range Chart?
It’s the chart that shows the pattern of gifts you’ll need to bring in if your campaign is going to succeed. The chart that’s right for your organization reflects a pattern of gifts that is both reasonable and relates to the realities of your organization’s donor base.
You may have gone online and found an app that allows you to plug in your campaign goal and presto, the gift range chart for your campaign appears, all nicely calculated and neatly configured.
But sadly, it won’t work. Don’t misunderstand, the app will work. But the gift range chart it churns out for you won’t!
Don’t Use a Standard Chart Calculator
An effective Gift Range Chart for your organization has got to reflect your fundraising realities; otherwise it’s not worth a fig. The size of the top gifts and the breadth of the base are not standard fare.
To explain the wonders of a Gift Range Chart and show you how to use one for your campaign, I’ve made the short video below.
Build Confidence With Structure
Think of your Gift Range Chart as the structure or framework for you campaign. Just about everything depends on it.
Once you have developed a chart that is both logically sound and reflects the realities for your organization (see the video above for instructions), you’ll be able to use it to make sense of your entire campaign.
That’ll not only help you tame the beast, but your ED and your board and your volunteers and even your donors will understand how it all works.
Sound too good to be true? It’s not!
With a Gift Range Chart that fits your organization, the pieces of your campaign will fall into place and as they do, you’ll find that people — your boss, your board and even your donors — will gain confidence.
9 Things a Good Gift Range Chart Will Show
- The number and amount of gifts needed to reach your goal
- A simple assessment of whether your goal is achievable
- The number of prospects you need to reach the goal
- Analysis of your prospects at varying gift levels
- Priority order of solicitation
- Gift levels of your naming opportunities and donor recognition
- Staffing responsibilities for the campaign
- A guide for individual donors about where their gifts fit in the campaign
- A planning tool for donor communication
Hang all of these things on the same framework and you’ll find that you won’t feel so scattered and anxious. You’ll be able to focus your time and energy in the right places so your campaign takes shape in a step-by-step, logical way.
You can download the Sample DRAFT Gift Range Chart I use to experiment with different gift patterns.
In upcoming posts, we’ll provide more ideas, tools and examples of specific ways you can apply Gift Range Charts to the elements of your campaign planning. Subscribe now to get updates in your inbox.Build confidence with structure. What it takes to accomplish a successful #capitalcampaign. Click To Tweet