Tag Archives: board responsibilities

Nonprofit Radio for January 24, 2022: Tribute To Michael Davidson

Michael Davidson & Brian Saber: Tribute To Michael Davidson

Michael Davidson died last week. The show is a replay of his last guest appearance, from October 18, 2021. Michael was on with his co-author, Brian Saber, and we talked about their book, “Engaged Boards Will Fundraise.”

If you’d like to make a contribution in his memory, Michael has asked that all memorial gifts go to SAJ, his beloved synagogue in NYC.

If you’d like to share your thoughts about Michael, you can email them to tributestomike@briansaber.com. Brian will send them to Michael’s family.

 

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[00:02:44.84] spk_0:
Hello and welcome to tony-martignetti non profit radio big nonprofit ideas for the other 95%. I’m your aptly named host of your favorite abdominal podcast. Yeah, this is a tribute show. Michael Davidson died last week. He’ll be remembered as a smart, funny, humble giving gentleman. His decades working with boards and his time as chair of governance matters gave him clarity around building healthy, efficient fundraising nonprofit boards. Michael shared his wisdom so generously including with non profit radio listeners. My tribute to Michael is a replay of his last time as a guest he was on with his co author and colleague brian Saber. If you’d like to make a contribution in his memory, Michael has asked that memorial gifts go to S A. J. His beloved synagogue in new york city. They’re at the S AJ dot org. If you’d like to share your thoughts about Michael, you can email them to tributes to mike at brian saber dot com, brian will send them to Michael’s family From October 18, 2021 here is engaged boards will fundraise. Okay, it’s my pleasure to welcome back Michael Davidson and brian Saber, Michael is a consultant specializing in nonprofit board, development management, support, leadership, transition and executive coaching for nonprofit managers. He has over 30 years experience in nonprofit board and managerial leadership. Michael’s at board coach dot com brian Saber is a co founder of asking matters and one of the field’s preeminent experts on the art and science of asking for charitable gifts face to face. He’s been working with boards for more than 35 years to help unlock their fundraising potential. Brian’s company is at asking matters dot com and he’s at brian Saber together, Michael and bryan co authored the book, engaged boards will fundraise how good governance inspires them. Their book brings both of them and back to nonprofit radio Michael and BRian welcome back to the show. What a

[00:02:48.14] spk_1:
pleasure. Great to be back. Great to be back.

[00:02:50.00] spk_2:
Very happy to be here.

[00:02:51.16] spk_0:
Glad to have you. Yes, congratulations on the book.

[00:02:54.35] spk_1:
Thank you

[00:03:00.04] spk_0:
Michael, Your book title is emphatic, there’s no hedging, no

[00:03:01.25] spk_1:
qualifications. How can

[00:03:04.52] spk_0:
you be so sure, engaged boards will fundraise?

[00:04:17.44] spk_1:
Well, it’s a, it’s a great, great question, tony and it really is the answer to that is in the title If if you’ve got a board that really does care about what the mission and the vision is of the organization, that’s why they’re there. If they have that personal motivation to be involved in your organization and to care about the impact that you’re having in the, in the world and are engaged in the ownership of that impact in managing it, they care enough to do this. Where are our whole premises? We can teach board members how to fundraise, brian has been doing that forever. Our job is to figure out how do we make board members want to fundraise and making them want to fundraise is engaging them, engaging them with their fellow board members, connecting them with their fellow board members and deeply connecting them with the vision and the passion that brought them to your board in the first place. That’s the simple, really, the simple answer for this. If they’re engaged, they’re gonna want to, they’re gonna want to make this organization happen, which includes raising the money for it.

[00:04:32.74] spk_0:
And much of the book is getting that engagement doing it properly. We go from details like the board meeting, which we’re going to talk about two to broader engagement you want? Yes. In fact, you say fundraising must be fully integrated with the active engagement of the board in its fiduciary and leadership

[00:04:55.14] spk_1:
roles. Ryan

[00:04:55.92] spk_0:
Ryan flush that out for us a little bit, uh, we, you know, we got plenty of time together. We don’t have to, you don’t have to pack it all into one answer, but why are we starting to get into their fiduciary and leadership roles and, and they’re that relationship with fundraising?

[00:05:51.34] spk_2:
Well, let’s look at the budget for example, and often a budget is presented to the board. The staff puts together a budget and if it seems like it adds up, the board approves it often, it’s maybe just slightly incremental from the last one, not a lot of explanation, sometimes a lot of detail without higher level explanation. And so the board is basically just, I hate to say rubber stamping it and that, that’s just, that’s very passive if the board is involved in developing the budget and is really given a sense of what can be accomplished with a larger budget

[00:06:01.54] spk_1:
and gets to choose

[00:07:03.64] spk_2:
and say yes, we’d like to do more. And we understand our role in that, that we can’t just tell the staff to raise more. Here’s where the money comes from. Here is our roll. This is how we develop larger donors. It does take the board unless wear a university with a big major gift staff were it for most organizations, the board is the major gift staff. We get that. We want our organization to do more. We’re going to agree to this budget knowing all of that, then they’re in it together. Everyone around the table is a knowing a willing participant that’s very different and we don’t see a lot of that happening. And yes, it’s hard on, especially smaller organizations to get all of this done, but it’s critical. It’s critical not to shortchange the process. If we short change the process, we can’t expect the board to enthusiastically go out and fundraise.

[00:07:31.24] spk_0:
This reminds me of the old conventional wisdom, you know, ask for if you want money, asked for an opinion your if you want to, if you want an opinion to ask for money, you’re you’re you’re saying you’re getting the board’s opinion, you’re you’re calling an engagement. But it’s it’s it’s bringing in the board’s opinions about what the organization should be doing, what should be paring back where it should be heading, is that is that, is that essentially what you’re doing is getting bored getting bored opinions

[00:09:27.04] spk_1:
and ownership because it’s not just their opinion on the budget. They put their opinion into this budget, they work with staff on developing it, but at the end of the day they raise their hand and they say, I approve this budget with these particular fundraising goals included in it. I agree to this, they make that decision. You know, one of the things that’s interesting in connection with this, this puts a lot more work on staff. They got to spend more time on the budget. And very often staff said, oh my God, leave the board, we’ll do the budget. Don’t bother them. It’s going to take too much time to explain all of this to them. They may disagree with us on our priorities. They may think other things are important. I don’t want to get involved in that. Let’s just give him a budget a quick five minute vote and done, right? So it requires staff executive director to say, you know, if you want a board that’s going to fundraise, you’ve got to spend the time listening to them explaining to them, engaging with them and they may come out somewhat differently than you do, you gotta live with that. You gotta live with that. It’s not your organization, it’s your joint organization. That’s, you know, that’s a lot of work. So, you know what we’re saying may sound simple, you know, as for advice, you get money, but the reality is, there’s a commitment involved, Both on the part of board members and on the part of staff to make this, you know, staff comes to us all the time. But Brian, and I hear this 10 times a day, my board won’t fundraise, oh, well, what are you doing to get them to do that?

[00:09:29.74] spk_2:
Right. Another piece of it, which we’ll get to is having them do the right fundraising. So that’s the other half of the equation, which didn’t cover because it is a double edged sword there. Okay,

[00:10:00.14] spk_0:
Michael, can we at at points then push back when, when it comes time for, for board commitments around fundraising and say, you know, you all agreed to the, to this budget, you took ownership of the budget, You held your hands up and voted well, now it’s time to fund what you all agreed to. Can you, can you sort of give it back to them that

[00:10:11.74] spk_1:
way? Absolute. And it requires one on 1 work with each board member. And for me, that’s the role of the resource development committee. So let’s talk about it. We’ll get to brian’s magic number of floor, you know, what are you going to do? And

[00:10:25.14] spk_0:
uh, yeah, well, before we get to the fundraising part, I wanna, I wanna spend time on the engagement

[00:10:28.84] spk_1:
part. Let’s

[00:10:44.14] spk_0:
not go anarchy economy. I wanna, I wanna, I wanna, I wanna get this, you talk about a, a culture that creates full engagement, uh who, who’s best for, I don’t know who to call on, you know, I’m a Socratic method from law school, I don’t know, but I don’t want to go like ping pong either, brian Michael, brian Michael, that’s that’s too monotonous. So, you know, who’s who’s best for talking about creating this culture of engagement at on

[00:10:59.10] spk_2:
the board. We’ll let Michael

[00:12:51.14] spk_1:
okay for me, you know, this came out of, I did a workshop with a number of consultants on helping them learn how to do what I do, and one of the consultants whose brilliant, actually, we’ve got a quote from her and what Catherine devoid. Catherine said, you know what you’re talking about, Michael is aboard culture and Peter Drucker, the management guru says, you know, culture eats strategy for breakfast. What we want to do when I talk about a culture is a culture, is a team for me aboard, culture is a team, We see ourselves as a team, we understand, we know each other, we’ve spent time with each other and we jointly want to do something, we jointly believe in this in this mission, okay, And we encourage and support one another. So the culture at base has a system where board members know each other and work together on various kinds of things. Then you have the motivation and then board members can encourage and hold one another accountable for what they’re doing. So the culture starts with, making sure that board members know one another personally, personally know who they are, who they are and from that you can begin to build a sense of a team. We’re in this together, we’re not separate. It’s a very, it’s a very different notion of what the board is. You know, you and I tony were lawyers. Right? So we start, okay, this is the fiduciary responsibility. This is the board, this is what they’re supposed to do brian and I are asking the question yes, we know what they’re supposed to do. How do we make them want to do it? And part of it is the mission, but part of it is their sense of responsibility to each other. Think about a sports team, right? What makes a good sports team? Not a collection of stars, right? It’s a collection of individuals who don’t want to let one another down. I want to do my best because I’m with you, we’re doing this together. And if you get the matter,

[00:13:16.84] spk_0:
you used to use the metaphor Michael of the rowing because you’re a rower and you had the coach boat and rowers have to be working in unison,

[00:14:17.94] spk_1:
right? In in unison. And there’s a great quote which I used in the book from the boys in the boat, in which the coach tells this row, right? You know, you’re a good rower. But let me tell you what you need to do to be a great rower to be a great rower. You need to trust every other guy in the boat when you trust everybody else, you will be great. That’s an interesting notion, right? Because I know if I know Tony, I know you’re pulling as hard as you can, I’m gonna pull as hard as I can. If I’m not so sure about you, why do I kill myself? Right? But I know you tony you’re gonna pull with everything you’ve got. And so I’m gonna pull with everything I got. It’s a very simple kind of notion, but to us, it’s very, very important. It’s creating the board as a group, not as a collection of separate individuals as a team and they hold one another accountable and they don’t want to let one another down. It’s the experience we’ve all had.

[00:14:20.94] spk_0:
Right? How do we start building this trust among board members?

[00:16:33.84] spk_2:
Well, first we look at the time we, they spend together and how we’re using it. So I always say to people, it’s amazing the percentage of a board member’s time that is spent in board meetings and the percentage of the board meeting time that is not spent. Well, so if you’re going to have A two hour meeting every other month, Uh that’s 12 hours and and maybe there in the committee meeting once every two months or once every month or something. But almost all the time is spent together in these meetings. And the meetings have so much, uh, um, reporting, There’s so much happening there. That doesn’t have to happen, uh, there. And, and, and so the meetings don’t allow for this team building where the, where the board members are grappling with the big issues and wrestling with the future of the organization, uh, how the organization is presented, where it fits in a big, big, important issues. And they should be wrestling with those because they’re the board and they have the responsibility for moving this organization ahead, keeping it safe, making sure it’s doing the right thing. And uh, so many board meetings have very little discussion of program presentation of program reporting back from board members of what they’ve seen in the program. And lots of board members rarely even see the program in action. So the board meetings are very report central centric, no one wants to give up their their chairman’s report, their executive director’s report, this report, that report. And we try to move people towards these consent agendas where all the reports go out in advance and are simply approved and you have to read them. You have to read them in advance because you can’t just come to the meeting and expect to have a conversation about them even and even the action steps should be discussed.

[00:17:02.64] spk_0:
You even suggest in the book that questions about what’s in the consent agenda have to be submitted in advance of the meeting? You can’t come to the meeting with your questions about the previous, the previous minutes or or everything or the reports that are in the consent agenda, you got to submit your questions in advance. So we know you’ve read them, How many of us have been in board meetings where people, you can see, you see people for the first time, they get there 10 minutes early and they’re pouring over their board notebook and you’re just sure that that’s the first time they cracked it open 10 minutes before the meeting and what’s really they’re wasting their time at that point.

[00:17:47.24] spk_2:
And then you get one or two board members who hijacked the meeting with questions and they shouldn’t be allowed to. No one gets to hijack a meeting. And if you have this, this structure in place which is much more about discussion and moving the organization forward, building the team and such, then there isn’t that time for these small questions. I mean, I I get driven crazy when budgets are presented and someone goes to one small line item and ask the question, it’s it’s it’s it’s so bad in many ways, we’re trying to move people away from that.

[00:19:07.14] spk_1:
But tony there’s another side to this and that’s the role of the executive director in this Because what we’re urging is that there’ll be substantive questions, for example, on such and such a program. What is the impact of that program and how do we measure that impact? Right. That’s an important engaged board discussion. Executive directors many say, wait, wait, wait, wait. I don’t want them getting into program. That’s my job. If they start talking about programs, it means they’re trying to manage how I do my my implementation work. Right? And we say we want we want boards to be faced with the real issues, as we say in the book, the good, the bad and the ugly. Well, executive directors don’t like to do that. They just want to give the board good news, put out their report and go home and hope that they don’t bother them. So this partnership takes too right. You’ve got to have an executive director who is willing to engage with the board in these substantive discussions about the future of the organization, about the problems that the organization is having about its challenges, not just the good news. So it takes, it’s two sided. You can’t do

[00:19:08.11] spk_0:
this. What is the appropriate role for a board member, board members around program, Michael,

[00:21:23.84] spk_1:
for me, it’s about impact. It’s not about how you do your program, it’s about what your program is designed to accomplish. And how do you measure? What’s the vision? What are you trying to do? How do you measure that impact? I’ve got, you know, I’m on the selection committee for the Awards of Excellence and nonprofit management. And one of the things that we look at is program impact. So let me give you one of my favorite examples. And this is the board involved, an impact, Right? Um you know, I’m a roller. So this is, it’s a rolling story. Okay, So wonderful organization in new york city called Rome new york. No new york works with local high school kids, makes them into competitive rowers, which is really good for their college applications. Works with them on college prep stuff and stuff. They were off the wall about the results of their program, 98% of their kids were getting into college. Fantastic. Right. Fantastic. Well, but they had also been collecting data on their kids. And one of the things that they saw in their data is that their kids were not doing so great in college. And so the executive director and the board started to look at this data and said, you know, we’re we’re focusing on the wrong input. Our endpoint should not be college acceptance. Our endpoint. Our impact point should be college graduation. So now what do we have to do programmatically to reach that. And we have to put resources into different kinds of programs that the programs to keep track of the kids once they’re in school, bring them back. So and it’s over. But it was the board and the executive director looking at the data and looking at the question, what is our goal, what is the impact we’re trying to make? And by doing that, they jointly changed where they were directing resources, some of the staff that they were doing and stuff like that. So that’s an example for me of the board being involved in programs, but at the right level at the level of impact and the level of data, not how do you teach? And that’s what executive directors tend to be afraid of. Once you start talking about program, then they’re gonna start talking about how do I teach and how do I run my classroom and so on and so forth. And that’s the board job

[00:22:06.14] spk_0:
brian, let’s talk a little more about nuts and bolts of meetings. If the, if this is the primary time that the board is spending together, whether it’s committee meetings or bored or full board meetings. Um, in fact I’m imagining you two would advocate for social time for the board as well. But so we can, you know, we’ll get to the social part. Let’s let’s talk more about some nuts and bolts meetings. Were trying to build a team, we’re trying to build trust. We want to focus on the right things. What, what more advice you have around meeting structure.

[00:24:04.24] spk_2:
Well, first of all, the agenda needs to be developed jointly by the executive director and board leadership. Sometimes that’s just the chair, sometimes that’s the entire executive committee and it needs to be developed in advance and everyone needs to know their role and be prepared, not just wing it. Uh so that’s that’s the first piece. I often hear boards talking about one hour meetings. Now. This idea of making meetings very efficient and it reminds me of this issue with government and people want small government, it’s really better government that you want, right? You don’t want to waste the time. It’s not that you’ve got to make it smaller, but it needs to work, right? And I think an hour is not enough time. I think an hour and a half to two hours gives you uh, the flexibility to dig into a topic. Uh you have to have some sort of program presentation every time. There’s there’s no substitute for that. The more we connect board members program and give them an opportunity to ask questions about it to learn about it, the stronger their connection will be. So there needs to be programmed presentation, Michael and I prefer that board members are out there, uh seeing program and are bringing back their own recollections and sharing those with the board. Um, so those those are important. Uh the, you know, we should not have a long Executive Director’s report. We should be asking the executive director just as we ask all the committee chairs to submit their reports in advance. Uh the the chair’s report should be very short at the very beginning, very high level Michael, Would you add to that?

[00:24:06.32] spk_1:
Yes, I didn’t do that. Exactly one is I love to time my agenda’s

[00:24:13.14] spk_0:
Yeah,

[00:24:35.44] spk_1:
I lay out, you know, we we lay out what’s gonna be and then I put this is gonna be five minutes, 15 minutes, whatever it is and that does a couple of things. No one, it focuses the board, it makes us think about where we want big discussion and where we don’t want big discussion and it also gives the chair of the power to cut things off. So if someone’s going off on a on a rabbit or you know, at the meeting, no, no, no, no. We’ve only got five minutes for this. We have to end discussion now because otherwise we’re not going to get to the other. So timing the agenda is a big deal. You know, Michael, I’ve

[00:24:58.64] spk_0:
even seen where uh aboard and I’ve seen this in other meetings as well outside the board setting, where there’s a timekeeper appointed. So so the chair can keep the conversation flowing and relevant. And the timekeeper is the one who says, we only have three minutes left for this topic. You know, like mr mr and mrs board chair, there are only three minutes left on this topic. You know, it’s up to you to decide what you want to do, but I’m the timekeeper and I’m letting you know there’s only three minutes left. But just another,

[00:26:41.64] spk_1:
it’s an interesting notion I actually kinda like it goes back to as you know, I spent a good part of my legal career as a prosecutor and you know, and the notion of good cop, bad cop, right? So so the board chair is a good cop. No, no, I’m not controlling this, right? Someone else is telling us we have to stop, but I’d love to let you talk forever. Right? Yeah, good. You know, so it’s a good thing. The other thing too is there’s a framework for board discussions which rob Acton is used in in in his in his writings and he’s, you know, and he says there are three kinds of questions that boards need to be looking at generative strategic and fiduciary, okay, generative is where are we going, why are we doing this? What’s our purpose? Right? Strategic is how do we do it? And fiduciary other details and you know, and part of what happens is so much of board meetings tend to be taken up with fiduciary matters and not enough time on generative and strategic matters. So again, as the, as the leadership team is thinking about the agenda, they should be asking, you know, are there questions of that nature, generative and strategic that we need to be thinking about, you know, so it’s good paradigm.

[00:26:43.44] spk_0:
Yeah, brian’s got his hand

[00:27:34.14] spk_2:
out and I want to add to that, that when we talk about developing these board meetings, a lot of boards meet if not every month every other month and I’ve always felt the more often you meet and it’s not something we talked talked about in the book, but it’s something I Michael and I have talked about, the more often you meet, the, the more likely it is you’re going to get into more details because less has happened in the two months you get out of the meeting. Everyone has one committee meeting perhaps than your back. And, and I don’t think boards have to meet as a board every two months. I think if they meet quarterly as a board, there’s, it’s easier to see the big picture. It gives more time for committee work in between and and that alone could help lessen the focus on minutia.

[00:27:43.54] spk_1:
It’s an interesting question. Um, I, I go both ways depending upon the organization and, and the size of the board. But one of the things that’s interesting about another question about board meetings is how do we use board meetings to connect board members with one another?

[00:27:58.64] spk_0:
I was gonna get to this. I wanted to get to the social side of this too.

[00:28:01.73] spk_1:
Great. Okay. Okay.

[00:28:03.09] spk_0:
Yeah. So how do we,

[00:29:40.14] spk_1:
Well, it’s very, it’s really interesting because I think, and I’ve been thinking about this a lot as we emerge from Covid, hopefully emerge from Covid. Right? And, you know, very often would say, okay, you know, what we’ll do is we’ll have a cocktail party before the board meeting, have some wine and cheese, maybe after the board meeting. It’s interesting, but it’s a pretty it’s problematic because what’s likely to happen, what’s likely to happen is that board members will talk to people that they know the people that they usually talk to, right? And they’re going to talk with them about the things that they usually talk about, right? Your your your golf game, your your your your your other involvements, whatever things that they have in common, they talk about. And what I’ve been trying to think about it, we mentioned in the book is how do we create a how do we structure the interpersonal connection so that it’s deeper. Um I just did this yesterday. So whatever the most recent thing in my mind always helps, right? So I retreated. I facilitated a board retreat yesterday, which actually was in person. Um and but what we did was before the, before the meeting, and this can be done. We assigned pairs of board members. Everybody was in a pair of two and they had an assignment. What they had to do was to interview the other person, find out about them, what they like, what they do, what their passions are, what they care about, what they read, what kind of music they’re kids, they’re this, they’re not find out about who they are as a person, and then each one had to then introduce the other at the board meeting. Okay, so this is something that takes some time and you can’t do it all the time, but it’s a very interesting way. And I asked him, I said, what was this like? You said, this was great. These are really interesting people. I want to work with these people

[00:29:58.64] spk_0:
going back to your team, Team building.

[00:30:12.14] spk_1:
Team, go back, yep. So if, if we’re, if we’re going to try to create opportunity, social opportunities, we need to think about what’s the best way to do that to achieve our goals.

[00:30:14.44] spk_0:
I’m skeptical. I’m a little concerned about wine. Before the

[00:30:18.04] spk_2:
meeting, you were getting a little too uh,

[00:30:21.86] spk_0:
a little too loose lipped maybe. But but but I love the idea of the introducing, introducing someone you don’t know, you get to talk to somebody that’s outside your comfort zone, but ought not be because their fellow board member. Right. Right. Right.

[00:31:13.94] spk_2:
Yeah. I had a program at one organization where I was where we, we had board members go out after the meeting together and we assigned the groups so that we had a good mix and people would, would meet each other and and they were, the goal was for them to do that twice a year. It’s all about time. Right? But we thought that was important time to spend so that they’d at least go out to dinner with half the board and some of it depends on the size of your board, what you can accomplish, Right? But we didn’t want groups of more than six because we wanted people to be able to talk with each other. So, but we might send two groups of six out in different directions.

[00:32:13.34] spk_1:
Yeah. You know, and it’s interesting, I’ve seen people do very simple things at the beginning of a board meeting, a consultant I’ve worked with, she always starts out every board meeting with a question. So, tell me about the kind of music you like. Alright, two seconds. Tell me about the most interesting book you’ve read recently and why? It was interesting to you. Right? I mean, two seconds we can do that at a board meeting. It loosens everybody up. It enables people who are introverts to have to say something to get out there and talk. It puts a limit for the extroverts on how much they can talk. Right. But it’s a, you know, so you can do devices like this recognizing because it’s important, it’s important to recognize the importance of the board culture that unless we have that sense of connection between people, none of this stuff is gonna work.

[00:32:19.84] spk_2:
Okay. And now let’s bring it

[00:32:21.11] spk_0:
to the to the book title.

[00:32:22.62] spk_1:
Okay. Will

[00:32:24.45] spk_0:
will fundraise Shall shall engage board shall fundraise.

[00:32:28.32] spk_1:
How is No, no, no, no, no. We didn’t use the word shall. Now I I added shall because that’s pretty that’s pretty perspective prescriptive, prescriptive. I

[00:32:58.54] spk_0:
know, yes, contract, contract, your shall versus will um no. The book title is engaged. Boards will fundraise. So how does having better board meetings and board members knowing each other better through these simple social devices? Social methods improve our fundraising

[00:35:18.54] spk_2:
Right. Well, as Michael has talked about a fair amount, it creates a team and a sense of joint responsibility. You’d think that it exists just because they have all joined this same organization. But you can’t just accept that as fact, you have to work on it. So by building this team, this camaraderie by, by helping people understand each other. Uh, there is a shared sense of, of, of responsibility. Second, by really engaging the board in these discussions and having the board understand the organization at a more nuanced and important level. It is easier for them to talk about the organization to feel comfortable doing it to represent it properly and to do it passionately, which is key to fundraising right? Being an ambassador for the organization. So many board members uh, say I, I don’t know enough about the organization to go out and talk about it. I’m afraid I’m gonna say the wrong thing. I don’t know the organization like the executive director does. And one of the steps here is to get board members more comfortable as ambassadors talking about it. Uh, and it’s funny because I always say to board members, you don’t need to know all the details. You don’t have to know every little thing and all the numbers and such. You just have to be passionate and authentic to tell a good story and get people excited about the organization and its incense goes hand in hand with the board meetings. Right? And if we’re concentrating on Mnuchin the board meetings, then the board members think they need to know the minutia. If we stay out of the minutia in the board meetings, then the board members can feel okay, this bigger picture is what’s important. So, so we build a sense of responsibility and we build, uh, more of a comfort in talking about the organization. We also build an understanding of why the funds are needed and what they will do, right? It’s not just we need money. Uh, will you give me money? I love this charity, but this is the impact we’re going to, how they can talk about that. So, okay, so that gives them a basis for going on fundraising.

[00:36:05.03] spk_0:
And that’s sort of a perfect transition to getting now to the discussion of engaging the board in the right kind of funding in fundraising. So, you know, listeners, you just get, you gotta get the book to, to learn more about how to engage your board. Um, they talk about the different duties of care and loyalty and obedience that board members have than governance. There’s, there’s good talk about governance, uh, that, you know, belonging in in one place and management, belonging by the other managements, by staff, governance, by the board. You gotta, you know, you got to read the book to get more of that detail about engaging. So now let’s talk about engaging the boards, you know, specifically in fundraising. You to have, Well, I think six different six things, you know, like make the case identify the resistance. Is that the best way to talk through the engaging the boarding fundraising? Or is there a better

[00:39:01.82] spk_1:
way for me? There’s, there’s another way to start it. And that is what brian has been talking about right now is giving the board members the basic tools, right? Thank you. They know how to tell a story, but they’ve got a story to tell. But one of the things that we look at is the fact that there is discomfort, resistance about fundraising. It is not something we do in our normal lives, right? We we do our jobs, we’re professionals, we don’t go out trying to engage other people in the things that we’re engaged in, Right? So they need help doing that as part of the team. Thing is they want to feel I want them to feel responsible to one another. But in addition, there has to be some guidance from, even from fellow board members or from staff into how to do this. So board member says, okay, I, I know I know these, I know these people, I, you know, I’m comfortable with them, I’m willing to talk about it. I’m a little, I’m uncomfortable asking them for something. They were gonna tell me, no, it’s going to harm the relationship and stuff like that. So time needs to be spent. Either one on one with board members and within a member of the Resource Development Committee or as they remember to go through, Okay, let’s figure out how you do this one with respect to the resistance that you have about it. How do you overcome that resistance? You know, what do you do? So for example, one of the techniques I told board members is you never want the first conversation you have with somebody about your organization to be a conversation. We’re asking for money. That’s the kiss of death. So what you’ve got to get to do is, okay, here’s what you gotta do over the next two weeks. You’re gonna are you gonna talk to any friends? Yes, I’m gonna talk to some friends. Okay. Here’s what I want you to do in those conversations. Find something that they’re interested in that allows you to bring up your experience with this organization. You’re not asking for money. You’re not asking to do anything. You’re just bringing this organization into the conversation. That’s your job. Alright, okay. Now, after you do this, let’s come back and talk about it and tell us what your experience is. Now you can do this with the entire board, right? We’re at a board meeting. Okay, everybody next week or between now and the next board meeting has to have one of these conversations with a friend come back and report at the next board meeting. Let’s see what we learned? What was difficult? What worked did they ask you questions? What would be the next steps? So they’ve got to birth, feel responsible for one another. But it also at the same time gets support from one another for doing this incrementally, because this is new to all of us. It’s new to us. You

[00:39:17.32] spk_0:
have an exercise in the book. Seems ideal for a board meeting where you you asked for board members to list their objections to fundraising and then list their personal experience of either having asked or being asked in the past. And the two don’t do don’t align like, the reality canceled out the objections. Like, whose idea is that, is that yours, Michael,

[00:40:53.31] spk_1:
or that’s that’s me. Yeah, Okay. It’s a very simple exercise. You know, I I like to draw upon personal personal experience. I believe that board members got the answers to all these things I’m concerned about. They just haven’t talked about it. My job is to get him to talk about it. So yeah, they’re gonna tell me about I don’t want to fundraise, that’s going to be this is gonna be that they’re gonna hate me, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Fine. Okay, now, let’s talk about what actually happened in your life? Have you ever given money? Did anybody why? What was there about that circumstance that made you comfortable and want to do that? So we take their experience and bring it back. I just, I’m gonna intercept here and you can cut this out if you want. One of my later readings is I’ve gone back to the Socratic dialogues, Plato’s writings about Socrates because what Socrates believed was that everybody had the answers to all these important questions in their head and his job was just a problem and ask the questions to get it out. And I believe, I believe this about boards, our job is to use their experience, not tell them what they’re doing wrong, take what they’ve done and learn from it and help them learn from it.

[00:40:59.51] spk_0:
You’re right. That that’s worthless. I’m gonna cut that

[00:41:01.53] spk_1:
out.

[00:41:04.13] spk_0:
Um, yeah, brian,

[00:42:07.90] spk_2:
but yeah, so you know, adding to what Michael said, one of the, one of the kickers here is board members having to ask all their friends only to be asked to give gifts in return to the other organizations that you know, with pro quo. And I’ve been talking about this for a decade at nauseam because it is horrible short term, a transactional fundraising. And it’s gotten really bad in our field to our detriment. And everyone gets sort of, uh, the organizations get stuck on this. It’s like a Like cocaine, right? And, and, and, and can’t move away from it. Well, we need the $50,000. The board raises and it’s like, Okay, well your board is going to hate doing this type of fundraising. They’re not going to be inspired when they leave, all those gifts are going to leave with them and so forth. So you’ve got a short term gain, you’re getting some money in the door. But everything else is wrong. We don’t, I always have people

[00:42:10.40] spk_0:
good point about just the last one you said, I want to just amplify when the board members leave. Those gifts are going with that. When I just, I just wanted to amplify that.

[00:43:21.30] spk_2:
When I say that to board, the lightbulb goes off, I say who I’m not? If I’m on the board and I leave the board, I’m not going to keep asking just if I could give gifts to all my friends and what what happens when you have me as a board member, uh, do this is I end up giving money away two organizations I don’t care about just to be nice. And whereas it would be better if I gave all that money into my organization that I love and tell people you give it where you love where, where you where you’re excited because then I’ve made a bigger investment in my own organization, have a bigger stake. I’m more of an investor. And if if I think I first wrote about this 10 years ago that if I had one wish in the nonprofit world, it would be to stop the quid pro quo fundraising today because it’s a sisyphean task. It’s just not getting anyone anywhere. It’s keeping them from anything strategic and it and it is burning out the board members. And when board members come to the board, often they’re on their first board. They assume that this is the type of fundraising we’re going to ask them to do, which is why they have such resistance.

[00:43:32.80] spk_0:
What do you want to see in in its place?

[00:44:19.29] spk_2:
What I want to see is the board members to serve as ambassadors and what I call many major gift officers. So let’s look, people look at the big shots, they look at the hospitals and the universities and these massive organizations because they raise so much money and they’re very visible and they all have what we call major gift staffs. They have, Uh, staff whose sole responsibility is to take 150 200 prospects donors and cultivate and solicit them and steward them along. Right. And, and those staff for year after year have these people have this portfolio if we want to call it that. Yeah. And that’s great. But most organizations have a budget under $1 million. Most organizations are lucky if they have one development officer who’s doing everything. Special events, direct mail, grant writing,

[00:44:34.29] spk_1:
crowdfunding

[00:46:35.38] spk_2:
You name it and maybe has 5% of their time to actually go out and talk to significant individual donors. So what I want rather than this transactional fundraising is for every board member To be a mini major gift officer with four prospects slash donors on their radar screen, who they stick with And those may or may not be their own contacts. Many organizations have people who need more attention than they’re getting and they don’t get it because the executive director and our director of development don’t have the time. I’d sooner see the board members taking donors out to coffee, calling them and thanking them for gifts, attending cultivation events with them and asking them what they think than being worried about soliciting the gift. I’m much less concerned about board members asking for a gift. They don’t have to ask for a gift as a matter of fact, and I only was thinking of this this past week. Major gift officers don’t always ask for the gift. So I was a major gift officer from my alma mater. I was in charge of solicitations in the midwest big gifts. And you know, there were times I asked many and there were times when someone else asked the president, the senior vice president, um, volunteer this idea that just because you’re cultivating and stewarding someone means you’re the Askar. It actually doesn’t even add up with professionals. So I want the board concentrated on this other work, which most of them are willing to do. Oh, I’ll happily call for people and thank them for their gifts. So I’d be happy to take people out and thank them and get to know them better. Ask them if they’ll come with me or or send them a personalized update. And this is incredibly important work. If we’re going to build relationships. And the other point I put out the three of us know the numbers that most, Most of the money, most of the charitable gifts come from individuals, 85, everything you had

[00:46:42.59] spk_0:
When you had requests. It’s like 88 or so. But yesterday that request is 77 or something like

[00:48:00.07] spk_2:
that. The largest gifts come from people. We know if you look at your own giving right and where the and individuals are really loyal. I ask people all the time on boards. This is part of breaking down that resistance. What’s the longest number of consecutive years you’ve contributed to an organization Now for many, it’s our alma mater, right? So I graduated in 84. I’ve been giving to them for 37 years and I’ll give them till I die. And many people do. That could be your church there. We give for decades. So we don’t, it’s not about the short term win. It’s about what I call an annuity of gifts over what could be decades. If you bring someone in and they get excited most of our organizations or institutions that are going going to be doing our work forever. Some are meant to put themselves out of business and result some problems. But most nonprofits will be here for 100 200 years assuming the planet is and you know helping people with medical needs, helping seniors, helping kids get educated, whatever it is, building community. And we want people to have a state for a long time. So let’s have board members help build that state with these individuals

[00:48:24.87] spk_0:
and that that also relieves board members of the, the fear and anxiety of having to be the solicitor. You know, some board members will step up to that, some will with training, but it’s not necessary. You’re saying board members can be building the relationships in all these different ways. Maybe hosting something in your home with four or six couples or something, all these different ways. You know that you mentioned the thank you, notes the acting as the ambassador all these ways and then maybe you’re you’re cultivating them for someone else to do the solicitation, maybe maybe the board member is involved in it or maybe not, you know, it doesn’t have to be

[00:49:04.17] spk_2:
right. It goes back to the good cop bad cop, you know, the board members, the good cop and then brings the Executive Director and Director of Development and to ask for the gift that’s perfectly legit perfectly legitimate. I played that role many times as an Executive Director Director of Development where I asked um, yeah, where the board member cued it up right

[00:49:27.37] spk_0:
and you’re collaborating in the relationship, the board members reporting back, letting the ceo no. You know, this is this is how it went with her. But you know, the ceo is asking, you know, do you feel like it’s maybe it’s the right time for me to ask or for us to ask or is it still too early? Or look, she expressed interest in this particular program. And you know, the board was just talking about expanding that, putting putting more resources to that. This could be a very timely topic for me to bring up at a, at a meeting with her or the or the three of us. You know, you’re you’re you’re collaborating around the relationship, you’re strategizing about when the best time is to actually do the

[00:50:19.96] spk_1:
solicitation, right? And going back to board meetings for a second. One of the things you want to do with the board meeting is acknowledge the people that have done this. You know, wow, let me, let me tell you, the executive director said, let me tell you that. You know brian and I brian introduced me to so and so and we had a meeting and you know, we walked away with a check for $5000. Thank you brian. That’s what you gotta do, right, celebrate. It builds it celebrate the winds and it builds it into the culture. You don’t want to be the only one who never gets it. Thank you. Right? Let’s

[00:50:30.36] spk_0:
talk about the expectations, establishing expectations around giving and fundraising for

[00:50:32.75] spk_2:
board members. Yes.

[00:50:34.60] spk_0:
Who wants to kick that off? Let’s spend a little time with that. Yeah, brian,

[00:53:22.35] spk_2:
can I? Because I’m, I have, I’m rabbit about this one actually to, um, I cannot stand minimums and given gaps, give or gets excuse me. I believe that everyone should do their best on both. Besides everyone should give a personally significant gift as an investor in this organization and do their best at fundraising. And, uh, without going into great detail. What I see time and again as a minimum gift ends up being a ceiling, not the floor. You think everyone’s gonna, okay, everyone’s gonna give at least this. But most people then give that, it feels like do is you set the, the amount low so that most people can reach it. You still have some who can’t. And, and it’s been proven again and again, that that minimum gifts do not generate the largest gifts, minimum gift requirements don’t help. And people say, well, how do board members know what to do? And I said, well from the very beginning, and we talk about a job prospectus in the job description, You tell prospective board members, here’s the range of gifts we have. Board members giving anywhere from $500 to $5000 depending on their capacity. We ask people to do something very significant, given the who they are and what they can do generally, right, we want everyone to feel that they’ve made a gift. They thought about that’s important to them. Some people said ask for that. One of the top three gifts you give anywhere, which is a very concrete way to put it and, and, and works. So on the gift front, you give people guidelines. And here’s, here’s an interesting thing. You actually asked board members for a gift. I’m amazed. We’ve never in good best fundraising or best practice fundraising. We ask our major gift donors for an exact amount, you know, Tony. Would you consider a gift of $10,000 etcetera? And yet we let our board members just give whatever they want to give. Why would we do that? I really push asking every board member for a specific amount that, that, that is personally significant to them, makes them think about what’s significant And on the get side, I really believe it should be the best of your ability because if we say you’ve got to give or get 5000, a board member with a lot of capacity can just give the whole thing and not do any work or swap gifts with friends. And, and yet, and the board member with less capacity is left, um, doing the hard work and that doesn’t make for a team. Everyone needs to do the hard work together.

[00:54:44.54] spk_1:
There’s a couple of, I mean, I, I’ve learned this from brian and that’s my become my mantra with working with, working with boards about personally significant gifts. And there’s a couple of there’s another consideration now, especially with with our desire to diversify our boards, don’t, we may be reaching into populations that don’t have access to resource, but they’re important in terms of perspectives that they bring to our deliberations. And so having this as the standard personally significant gift for everybody. It’s equal, we’re all equal. We’re all giving the best we can. Another part of that. And I really like what brian says about, you know, asking our board members, it’s a negotiation, Right? It’s not a no, I need $1,000 from you and that’s what you gotta do because you’re a board member. It’s what I, you know, let let me let me tell you what I give. Okay. And now here’s what I think might be reasonable for you. Let’s talk about it. Okay. Is it really is is that a reasonable gift for you? It’s not demanding its opening a conversation as as the possibilities. So, you know, I mean, I’ve done some capital fundraising and very often we ended up in a negotiation. You know, I asked, I went in asking for a certain amount which I thought that person could give or we thought that that person could give when I put that number on the table and kept my mouth shut for a few minutes, you know, so they came back and they said, well, you know, that’s a little okay, let’s talk about it then,

[00:55:06.14] spk_0:
Support support training? It could be training, could be staff, support for the, for the, the board that the, that the, the, the employees, the staff are, are obligated to give either their own or through a consultant. What kind of, what kind of board, what kind of support do we need to give? Our board members around fundraising?

[00:58:29.12] spk_2:
There are 22 pieces here. The first gets back to something, Michael said a long time ago about staff and the need for staff support in terms of the board meetings and the board members being involved, board members will only help with the fundraising to the extent they have staff support. They’re always gonna need staff guidance materials, someone to bounce ideas off of and and such staff need to be managing this, reminding board members of their next action step with a certain donor, um, providing materials and so forth. So staff have to keep the tracker, as I call it this, even if it’s an Excel spreadsheet with a list of everyone and who does what and, and, and, and constantly move the process forward. But probably the most important thing is training because, as Michael noted, board members come with very little experience and a lot of trepidation and the more training they can get, the more comfortable, they will be the more comfortable and effective. I always ask when I do a training, how many of you have ever been asked for a gift the way we’re talking about it. How many times has someone said, Michael, would you consider sitting down with me so I can ask you for a special gift to our organization. The truth of the matter is with all the asking out there with all the fundraising in every form. Very few people end up in these conversations. It’s the big, big, big, big donors, Right? And, and so many board members have never been on the other side of the equation and really have no idea what one of these meetings about. They assume you just go in and you ask for money, you just say, you know, will you give this? They don’t, there’s no way for them to know because they haven’t experienced it themselves. So we need to teach them what it is. Uh, and, and that it’s all about the relationship, which definitely takes some of the pressure off. It’s always about the relationship and it is never about the gift to me. That is the number one rule in fundraising. And I will leave money on the table time and again, I just, I just coach someone an hour before this conversation who’s the head fundraiser for a program within the school because a donor um, offered up an amount before being asked for an amount and it’s a significant amount and a big step forward. And the question becomes, do I go back, do I negotiate? And some of this is happening by email and I said in knowing the stoner, I said, you take the win. It’s about the relationship, This is much, this is big for you. There’s always next year, the year after and so forth. So teaching board members, it’s about the relationship, not the gift, whatever happens this year, that’s okay. We’re building the relationship helps them feel more comfortable because they think they’ve got to go in and come out with whatever you all were hoping for. You know, it’s a, it’s a it’s um, and we’re guilty of building this mindset. We as a culture.

[01:00:50.81] spk_1:
The other side of it is that there are some very for me very simple things that boards can learn how to do to build a relationship. For example, one of one of the things I very often do with a board retreat, simple exercise or on fundraising. I tell people, look, you’re now going to somebody, you’re sitting in somebody else’s fundraising dinner and there’s somebody sitting next to you. Okay, So you want to have a conversation with the person sitting next to you, get to know them. So here’s your job. You’ve got to ask that person questions about what they’re interested in their lives and zones of fourth and you’re looking for someplace in them that connects with your organization. Then when you find that place, then you can introduce your organization, but that’s your job and we, you know, we pair up and people around, you know, around the room, sit down and try to have these conversations and realize that they can because these the way in which we want to build relationships is a technique and it’s something we need to practice and become comfortable with. You know, people are not used to really interestingly asking questions. We all tell people things about ourselves, but we don’t ask them questions about themselves. So, I mean that’s one of the pieces of support, right? Doing those kinds of things, telling stories quick. You all went to visit the program, tell me something that happened in that program that you saw that really was important to you. That inspired you. That made you think about the value of this organization. Tell me the story. Well, people don’t know how to tell stories. They have to learn how to tell stories. It’s it’s but it’s a very simple, you know, these are not complicated techniques, but it’s all part of becoming comfortable in what brian is talking about in this ambassador role relationship relationship relationship.

[01:01:14.41] spk_0:
I love the relationship, not the gift like that brian. All right, we’re gonna leave it. We’re gonna leave it there with the with the support idea. You gotta support your board members, Michael Davidson, consultant and coach. He’s at board coach dot com. Ryan Saber asking matters, asking matters dot com and he’s at brian Saber, Michael brian thanks very much. Terrific.

[01:01:18.66] spk_1:
Thank you. It was a pleasure tony great questions. Thank you. My pleasure.

[01:01:31.31] spk_0:
I’m just, I’m just trying to keep things going. Look book and the book the book, it’s Michael and bryan, who cares about Michael and bryan is the book you want? The book is, the

[01:01:33.13] spk_1:
book is

[01:01:35.71] spk_0:
the book is engaged, boards will fundraise how good governance inspires them. It comes out this week, this week of october

[01:01:44.63] spk_1:
18th yes,

[01:02:17.91] spk_0:
it’s not a long book, but it is long on value as you can tell from this outstanding conversation, lots of value in the book. Our creative producer is Claire Meyerhoff. The shows, social media is by Susan Chavez. Marc Silverman is our web guy and this music is by Scott Stein, thank you for that. Affirmation scotty Be with me next week for nonprofit radio big nonprofit ideas for the other 95%. Go out and be great

Nonprofit Radio for October 18, 2021: Engaged Boards Will Fundraise

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Michael Davidson & Brian Saber: Engaged Boards Will Fundraise

Michael Davidson, the board coach, and Brian Saber from Asking Matters, have teamed up to write the book that reveals how to get your board to fundraise: Engage them.

 

 

 

 

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[00:00:10.94] spk_3:
Hello and

[00:00:12.12] spk_5:
welcome to tony-martignetti

[00:00:20.54] spk_2:
Non profit radio big non profit ideas for the other 95%. I’m your aptly named host of your favorite abdominal podcast.

[00:00:27.74] spk_5:
Oh, I’m glad you’re with me. I’d be forced to endure the pain of

[00:00:29.56] spk_2:
cellulitis if you inflamed and

[00:00:31.81] spk_5:
irritated me with the idea that you missed this week’s show

[00:00:35.74] spk_2:
engaged boards

[00:00:37.14] spk_5:
will fundraise

[00:00:39.24] spk_2:
Michael Davidson, the board coach and brian Saber from asking matters have teamed up to write the book

[00:00:49.54] spk_5:
that reveals how to get your board to fundraise engage them

[00:00:52.04] spk_2:
and tony state too

[00:00:55.94] spk_5:
podcast pleasantries. We’re sponsored by turning to communications

[00:00:58.19] spk_2:
pr and content for nonprofits.

[00:01:03.14] spk_5:
Your story is their mission turn hyphen two

[00:01:11.44] spk_2:
dot c o. It’s my pleasure to welcome back Michael Davidson and brian Saber, Michael is a consultant specializing in nonprofit board development management, support,

[00:01:22.34] spk_5:
leadership, transition and executive coaching for nonprofit managers. He has over 30 years experience in nonprofit board and managerial leadership.

[00:01:29.04] spk_2:
Michael’s at board coach

[00:01:31.11] spk_5:
dot com.

[00:01:32.94] spk_2:
Brian Saber is a co founder of asking matters

[00:01:43.34] spk_5:
and one of the fields preeminent experts on the art and science of asking for charitable gifts face to face. He’s been working with boards for more than

[00:01:45.38] spk_2:
35 years

[00:01:46.66] spk_5:
to help unlock their fundraising potential

[00:01:49.94] spk_2:
brian’s company is at asking

[00:01:51.78] spk_5:
matters dot com and he’s

[00:02:00.24] spk_2:
at brian Saber together. Michael and bryan co authored the book engaged boards will fundraise

[00:02:03.64] spk_5:
how good governance inspires them.

[00:02:06.44] spk_2:
Their book

[00:02:07.32] spk_5:
brings both of them and back to nonprofit radio

[00:02:12.24] spk_2:
Michael and brian welcome back to

[00:02:15.54] spk_0:
the show what a pleasure great to be back very.

[00:02:17.85] spk_1:
Happy to be here

[00:02:18.61] spk_0:
Glad to have you.

[00:02:21.84] spk_2:
Yes, congratulations on the book. Thank

[00:02:22.12] spk_0:
you,

[00:02:27.44] spk_2:
Michael, your book title is emphatic. There’s no hedging no qualifications.

[00:02:31.34] spk_0:
Absolutely. How can you be

[00:02:32.40] spk_5:
so sure engaged boards will

[00:03:44.94] spk_0:
fundraise? Well, it’s a it’s a great, great question, tony and it really is the answer to that is in the title if if you’ve got a board that really does care about what the mission and the vision is of the organization, that’s why they’re there. If they have that personal motivation to be involved in your organization and to care about the impact that you’re having in the, in the world and are engaged in the ownership of that impact, in managing it. They care enough to do this. What are our whole premises? We can teach board members how to fundraise, brian has been doing that forever. Our job is to figure out how do we make board members want to fundraise and making them want to fundraise is engaging them, engaging them with their fellow board members, connecting them with their fellow board members and deeply connecting them with the vision and the passion that brought them to your board in the first place. That’s the simple, really the simple answer for this. If they’re engaged, they’re gonna want to, they’re gonna want to make this organization happen, which includes raising the money for it

[00:04:00.24] spk_2:
and much of the book is getting that engagement doing it properly. We go from details like the board meeting, which we’re gonna talk about two to broader engagement. You want

[00:04:10.41] spk_0:
Yes. In fact, you say

[00:04:13.04] spk_3:
fundraising must be

[00:04:14.15] spk_5:
fully integrated

[00:04:15.98] spk_2:
with the active engagement

[00:04:17.71] spk_5:
of the board

[00:04:18.72] spk_2:
in its, uh, fiduciary and leadership roles.

[00:04:22.78] spk_0:
Right

[00:04:34.24] spk_2:
flush that out for us a little bit. Uh, you know, we got plenty of time together. You don’t have to, you don’t have to pack it all into one answer. But why are we starting to get into their fiduciary in leadership roles? And, and there that relationship with fundraising?

[00:05:18.84] spk_1:
Well, let’s look at the budget for example, and often a budget is presented to the board. The staff puts together a budget and if it seems like it adds up the board approves it often it’s maybe just slightly incremental from the last one. Not a lot of explanation, sometimes a lot of detail without higher level explanation. And so the board is basically just, I hate to say rubber stamping it and that, that’s just that’s very passive if the board is involved in developing the budget and has really given a sense of what can be accomplished with a larger budget

[00:05:29.04] spk_0:
and get to choose

[00:06:34.24] spk_1:
and say yes, we’d like to do more. And we understand our role in that, that we can’t just tell the staff to raise more here is where the money comes from, here is our role. This is how we develop larger donors. It does take the board unless where university with a big major gift staff were it for most organizations. The board is the major gift staff. We get that we want our organization to do more. We’re going to agree to this budget, knowing all of that, then they’re in it together. Everyone around the table is a knowing, a willing participant very different. And we don’t see a lot of that happening. And yes, it’s hard on, especially smaller organizations to get all of this done. But it’s critical. It’s critical not to shortchange the process. If we short change the process, we can’t expect the board too enthusiastically go out and fundraise. This reminds me

[00:06:34.96] spk_2:
of that

[00:06:36.04] spk_0:
old conventional

[00:06:56.04] spk_2:
wisdom, you know, ask for if you want money asked for an opinion, your, if you want to, if you want an opinion, ask for money, you’re, you’re, you’re saying you’re getting the board’s opinion, you’re calling an engagement. But it’s bringing in the board’s opinions about what the organization should be doing. What should be paring back where it should be heading. Is that, is that, is that essentially what you’re doing is getting bored getting bored opinions

[00:08:57.24] spk_0:
an ownership because it’s not just their opinion on the budget. They put their opinion into this budget, They work with staff on developing it. But at the end of the day they raise their hand and they say, I approve this budget with these particular fundraising goals included. It. I agree to this. They make that decision. You know, one of the things that’s interesting in connection with this, this puts a lot more work on staff. They got to spend more time on the budget. And very often stand said, oh my God, leave the board, we’ll do the budget. Don’t bother them, it’s going to take too much time to explain all of this to them. They may disagree with us on our priorities, they may think other things are important. I don’t want to get involved in that. Let’s just give them a budget a quick five minute vote and done right. So it requires staff executive director to say, you know, if you want a board that’s going to fundraise, you’ve got to spend the time listening to them explaining to them engaging with them and they may come out somewhat differently than you do. You’ve got to live with that. You got to live with that. It’s not your organization, it’s your joint organization. That’s, you know, that’s a lot of work. So, you know what we’re saying may sound simple, you know, has for advice. You get money. But the reality is, there’s a commitment involved, Both on the part of board members and on the part of staff to make this, you know, staff comes to us all the time, but Brian and I’m here this 10 times a day. My board won’t fundraise. Oh, well, what are you doing to get them to do that right, just another

[00:09:00.48] spk_1:
piece of it, which we’ll get to it, having them do the right fundraising. So that’s the other half of the equation, which cover because it is a double edged sword there. Okay.

[00:09:10.54] spk_0:
Uh,

[00:09:20.04] spk_2:
Michael, can we at points then push back when, when it comes time for, for board commitments around fundraising and say, you know, you all agreed to the, to this budget, You took ownership of the budget, You held your hands up and voted well, now it’s time to fund what you all agreed to. Can you, can you sort of give it back to them that way?

[00:09:39.24] spk_0:
Absolute. And it requires one on 1 work with each board member. And for me, that’s the role of the Resource Development Committee. So let’s talk about it. We’ll get to brian’s magic number of, you know, what are you going to do? Well, And uh, yeah,

[00:09:52.62] spk_2:
well, before we get to the fundraising part, I want to, I want to spend time on the engagement part.

[00:09:56.85] spk_0:
Sure.

[00:10:08.64] spk_2:
Let’s not go anarchy economy. I wanna, I wanna, I wanna, I wanna get this. You talk about a, a culture that creates full engagement. Uh, who’s best for uh, I don’t know who to call on a Socratic method from law school, I don’t know. Uh, but I don’t want to go like ping pong either brian Michael, brian, Michael, death too monotonous. So, you know, who’s, who’s best for talking about creating this culture of engagement at, on

[00:10:26.55] spk_1:
the board. We love

[00:12:29.04] spk_0:
Michael. okay for me, you know, this came out of it, I did a workshop with a number of consultants on helping them learn how to do what I do. And one of the consultants brilliant actually, we’ve got a quote from her and Catherine devoid. Catherine said, you know what you’re talking about, Michael is a board culture and peter Drucker, the management bureau says, you know, culture eats strategy for breakfast. What we want to do when I talk about a culture is a culture is a team for me aboard, culture is a team. We see ourselves as a team. We understand we know each other, we’ve spent time with each other and we jointly want to do something. We jointly believe in this in this mission. Okay. And we encourage and support one another. So the culture at base has a system where board members know each other and work together on various kinds of things. Then you have the motivation and then board members can encourage and hold one another accountable for what they’re doing. So the culture starts with making sure that board members know one another personally personally know who they are, who they are and from that you can begin to build a sense of a team, we’re in this together, we’re not separate. It’s a very, it’s a very different notion of what the board is. You know, you and I tony were lawyers, right? So we start okay, this is the fiduciary responsibility. This is the board. This is what they’re supposed to do brian and I are asking the question, yes, we know what they’re supposed to do. How do we make them want to do it? And part of it is the mission, but part of it is their sense of responsibility to each other. Think about a sports team, right? What makes a good sports team? Not a collection of stars, Right? It’s a collection of individuals who don’t want to let one another down. I want to do my best because I’m with you were doing this together. You get the matter

[00:12:45.94] spk_2:
used to the metaphor, Michael of the rowing because you’re a rower and you had the coach boat and rowers have to be working in unison,

[00:13:48.34] spk_0:
right in unison. And there’s a great quote which I use in the book from the boys in the boat, in which the coach tells this roller, right? You know, you’re a good rower. Let me tell you what you need to do to be a great rower to be a great rower, you need to trust every other guy in the boat when you trust everybody else. You will be great. That’s interesting notion, right? Because I know if I know Tony, I know you’re pulling as hard as you can, I’m gonna pull as hard as I can. If I’m not so sure about you, Why do I kill myself. Right? But I know you tony You’re gonna pull with everything you got. And so I’m gonna pull with everything I got. It’s a very simple kind of notion, but to us it’s very, very important. It’s creating the board as a group, not as a collection of separate individuals as a team and they hold one another accountable and they don’t want to let one another down. It’s the experience we’ve all had brian. How do we start

[00:13:49.60] spk_2:
building this trust among board members?

[00:13:59.14] spk_1:
Friend? Well, first we look at the time we, they spend together and how we’re using it. So I always say to people, it’s amazing the percentage of a board members time that is spent in board meetings and the percentage of the board meeting time that is not spent well.

[00:14:15.34] spk_0:
So

[00:16:10.84] spk_1:
if you’re going to have a two hour meeting every other month, that’s 12 hours and, and maybe they’re in a committee meeting once every two months or once every month or something. But almost all the time is spent together in these meetings. And the meetings have so much, uh, reporting, there’s so much happening there, that doesn’t have to happen. Uh, and, and, and so the meetings don’t allow for this team building where, where the board members are grappling with the big issues and wrestling with the future of the organization, uh, how the organization is presented where it fits in a big, important issues and they should be wrestling with those because they’re the board and they have the responsibility for moving this organization ahead, keeping it safe, making sure it’s doing the right thing. And uh, so many board meetings have very little discussion of program presentation of program reporting back from board members of what they’ve seen in the program. And lots of board members rarely even see the program in action. So the board meetings are very report central centric. No one wants to give up their their chairman’s report, their executive directors report this report, that report. And we try to move people towards these consent agendas where all the reports go out in advance are simply approved and you have to read them. You have to read them in advance because you can’t just come to the meeting and expect to have a conversation about them even. And even the action steps should be discussed. You

[00:16:18.84] spk_2:
even suggest in the book that questions about what’s in the consent agenda have to be submitted in advance of the meeting. You can’t come to the meeting with your questions about the previous the previous minutes or or everything or the reports that are in the consent agenda. You got to submit your questions in advance. So we know you’ve read them.

[00:16:30.54] spk_5:
It’s time for a

[00:16:37.44] spk_3:
break turn to communications. You want relationships with journalists than hire former journalists

[00:16:39.92] spk_0:
who know how

[00:17:10.14] spk_3:
to build those relationships, including one of them. One of the partners worked as an editor at the Chronicle of philanthropy. But both partners, our former journalists. So they know how to build those relationships. They know when it’s the right time to contact journalists. They know how deadlines work and they can coach you on talking to the journalists once they get you those relationships. So you want the relationships higher folks who used to

[00:17:11.64] spk_5:
do that work,

[00:17:44.54] spk_3:
turn to communications, they’ll get you set up. They have existing relationships that can help you build new relationships with journalists. And where are those existing ones? You’ve heard me regale you with the the litany of media outlets were turned to has relationships. So figure turned to communications, talk to them, turn hyphen two dot c o Your story is their mission

[00:17:48.64] spk_5:
now back to

[00:17:49.72] spk_3:
engaged boards

[00:17:51.11] spk_5:
will fundraise

[00:17:53.94] spk_2:
how many of us has been in board meetings where people, you can see, you see, you see people for the first time, they get there 10 minutes early and they’re poring over their board notebook and you’re just sure that that’s the first time they cracked it open 10 minutes before the meeting. And what’s really, they’re wasting

[00:18:10.46] spk_5:
their time at that point.

[00:18:38.54] spk_1:
And then you get one or two board members who hijack a meeting with questions and they shouldn’t be allowed to, no one gets to hijack a meeting. And if you have this, this structure in place, which is much more about discussion and moving the organization forward, building the team and such, Then there isn’t that time for the small questions. I mean I get driven crazy when budgets are presented and someone goes to one small line item and ask the question. It’s so bad. In many ways. We’re trying to move people away from

[00:19:58.44] spk_0:
that tony There’s another side to this and that’s the role of the executive director in this. Because what we’re urging is that there’ll be substantive questions, for example, on such and such a program. What is the impact of that program and how do we measure that impact? Right. That’s an important engaged, more discussion. Executive directors many say, wait, wait, wait, wait. I don’t want them getting into program. That’s my job. If they start talking about programs, it means they’re trying to manage how I do my my implementation work. Right? And we say we want we want boys to be faced with the real issues, as we say in the book, the good, the bad and the ugly well, executive directors don’t like to do that. They just want to give the board good news put out their report and go home and hope that they don’t bother them. So this partnership takes too right. You’ve got to have an executive director who is willing to engage with the board in these substantive discussions about the future of the organization about the problems that the organization is having about its challenges, not just a good news. So it takes it’s two sided. You can’t do this.

[00:19:59.87] spk_2:
What is the appropriate role for a board member? Board members

[00:22:15.14] spk_0:
around program Michael, for me it’s about impact, it’s not about how you do your program, it’s about what your program is designed to accomplish. And how do you measure what’s the vision, what are you trying to do? How do you measure that impact? I’ve got, you know, I’m on the selection committee for the Awards of Excellence and nonprofit management and one of the things that would look at his program impact. Let me give you one of my favorite examples and that’s the board involved in impact. Right? Um you know, I’m a rower. So this is it’s a rolling story. Okay, so wonderful organization, new york city koro new york no new york works with local high school kids, makes them into competitive rowers, which is really good for their college applications, works with them on college prep stuff and stuff. They were off the wall about the results of their program, 98% of their kids were getting into college. Fantastic. Right. Fantastic. Well. But they had also been collecting data on their kids and one of the things that they saw in their data is that their kids were not doing so great in college. And so the executive director and the board started to look at this data and said, you know, we’re focusing on the wrong end point. Our endpoint should not be college acceptance. Our endpoint, our impact point should be college graduation. So now what do we have to do programmatically to reach that? And we have to put resources, the different kinds of programs and the program to keep track of the kids once they’re in school, bring them back so on and so forth. But it was the board and the executive director looking at the data and looking at the question, what is our goal? What is the impact we’re trying to make? And by doing that, they jointly changed where they were directing resources, some of the staff that they were doing and stuff like that. So that’s an example for me of the board being involved in program, but at the right level at the level of impact and the level of data, not how do you teach? And that’s what executive directors tend to be afraid of. Once they start talking about program then they’re going to start talking about how do I teach you, How do I run my classroom and so on and so forth. And then to the board job

[00:22:26.84] spk_2:
brian, let’s talk a little more about nuts and bolts of

[00:22:29.27] spk_5:
meetings.

[00:22:57.44] spk_2:
If if this is the primary time that the board is spending together, whether it’s committee meetings or or full board meetings. Uh in fact, I’m imagining you two would advocate for social time for the board as well. But so we can, you know, we’ll get to the social part, let’s let’s talk more about some nuts and bolts meetings were trying to build a team, we’re trying to build trust. We want to focus on the right things. What, what more advice they have around meeting structure.

[00:24:32.74] spk_1:
Well, first of all, the agenda needs to be developed jointly by the executive director and board leadership. Sometimes that’s just the chair, sometimes that’s the entire executive committee and it needs to be developed in advance and everyone needs to know their role and be prepared, not just wing it. Uh, so that’s, that’s the first piece. I often hear boards talking about one hour meetings. Now this idea of making meetings very efficient and it reminds me of this issue with government and people want small government. It’s really better government that you want, right? You don’t want to waste the time. It’s not that you’ve got to make it smaller, but it needs to work. Right? And I think an hour is not enough time. I think an hour and a half to two hours gives you uh, the flexibility to dig into a topic. Uh, you have to have some sort of program presentation every time there’s, there’s no substitute for that. The more we connect board members program and give them an opportunity to ask questions about it to learn about it, the stronger their connection will be. So there needs to be programmed presentation, Michael and I prefer that board members are out there, uh, seeing program and are bringing back their own recollections and sharing those with the board. Uh so those those are important. Uh

[00:24:34.34] spk_0:
the

[00:24:55.54] spk_1:
uh we should not have a long executive directors report. We should be asking the executive director just as we ask all the committee chairs to submit their reports in advance. Uh The chair’s report should be very short at the very beginning, very high level, Michael, would you add to that?

[00:25:17.34] spk_0:
Yes, I didn’t do exactly. One is I love to time my agendas. I lay out, you know, we we lay out what’s gonna be and then I put five minutes, 15 minutes, whatever it is and that does a couple of things. No one, it focused the board, it makes us think about where we want big discussion and where we don’t want big discussion. And it also gives the chair of the power to cut things off. So if someone’s going off on a on a rabbit out, you know, at the minute, I know we’ve only got five minutes for this, we have to end discussion now because otherwise they’re not going to get to the I think so, timing the agenda is a big deal. You know, Michael, I’ve

[00:25:41.58] spk_2:
even seen where a board and I’ve seen this in other meetings as

[00:25:45.58] spk_5:
well outside the board

[00:25:46.67] spk_2:
setting, where

[00:25:47.80] spk_5:
there’s a timekeeper

[00:26:09.34] spk_2:
appointed so that the chair can keep the conversation flowing and relevant. And the timekeeper is the one who says, we only have three minutes left for this topic. you know, like mr mr and mrs board chair, there are only three minutes left on this topic, you know, it’s up to you to decide what you want to do, but I’m the timekeeper and I’m letting you know there’s only three minutes left, just another another

[00:27:34.74] spk_0:
enforcer. And it’s an interesting notion, I actually kind of like it he goes back to as you know, I spent a good part of my legal career as a prosecutor, you know, and the notion of good cop, bad cop, right? So so the board chairs the good cop or oh no, I’m not controlling this, right? Someone else is telling us we have to stop, I’d love to let you talk forever, right? Yeah, good. You know, so it’s a good thing. The other thing too is there’s a framework for board discussions which rob Acton is used in his uh in his writings and he’s you know, and he says there are three kinds of questions that boards need to be looking at generative strategic and fiduciary, Okay, generative is where are we going? Why are we doing this? What’s on purpose? Right. Strategic is how do we do it? And fiduciary other details. And you know, part of what happens is so much of board meetings tend to be taken up with fiduciary matters and not enough time on generative and strategic matters. So again, as the as the leadership team is thinking about the agenda, they should be asking, you know, are there questions of that nature, generative and strategic that we need to be thinking about, you know, so it’s the paradigm. Yeah, brian’s got his

[00:28:25.44] spk_1:
hand out and I want to add to that, that when we talk about developing these board meetings, a lot of boards meet, if not every month every other month. And I’ve always felt the more often you meet and it’s not something we talked talked about in the book, but it’s something Michael and I have talked about, the more often you meet, the the more likely it is you’re going to get into more details because less has happened in the two months you get out of the meeting. Everyone has one committee meeting perhaps than your back. And, and I don’t think boards have to meet as a board every two months. I think if they meet quarterly as a board, there’s it’s easier to see the big picture. It gives more time for committee work in between and and that alone could help lessen the focus on the new sha

[00:28:34.84] spk_0:
it’s an interesting question. Um I I go both ways, depending upon the organization and and the size of the board. But one of the things that’s interesting about another question about board meetings is how do we use board meetings to connect board members with one another?

[00:28:49.84] spk_2:
It was going to get to this. I wanted to get to the social side

[00:30:31.44] spk_0:
of this. Great. okay, okay. Yeah. So how do we, well, it’s very it’s really interesting because I think, and I’ve been thinking about this a lot as we emerge from covid, hopefully emerge from covid. Right? And, you know, very often would say, okay, you know, what we’ll do is we’ll have a cocktail party before the board meeting, have some wine and cheese, maybe after the board. Me, it’s interesting, but it’s surprise problematic because what’s likely to happen, what’s likely to happen is that board members will talk to people that they know people that they usually talk to write and they’re going to talk with them about the things that they usually talk about, right, your your your golf game, your your your your your other involvements, whatever things that they have in common they talk about. And what I’ve been trying to think about it, we mentioned in the book is how do we create, how do we structure the interpersonal connection so that it’s deeper. Um, I just did this yesterday. So whatever the most recent thing in my mind always helps. Right? So I retreated, I facilitated a board retreat yesterday, which actually was in person. Um, and but what we did was before the, before the meeting, and this can be done, we assigned pairs of board members. Everybody was in a pair of two and they had an assignment, what they had to do was to interview the other person, find out about them, what they like, what they do, what their passions are, what they care about, what they read, what kind of music they’re kids. They’re this they’re that find out about who they are as a person, and then each one had to then introduce the other at the board meeting. Okay, so this is something to take some time and you can’t do it all the time. But it’s a very interesting way. And I asked him, I said, what was this like you said, this was great. These are really interesting people. I want to work with these people.

[00:30:50.34] spk_2:
There’s no going back to your team. Team building.

[00:31:05.74] spk_0:
Team, yep. So if if we’re if we’re going to try to create opportunity social opportunities, we need to think about what’s the best way to do that to achieve our goals. I’m skeptical.

[00:31:06.89] spk_2:
I’m a little concerned about wine before the

[00:31:09.34] spk_0:
meeting. I get a little too uh a

[00:31:14.07] spk_2:
little too loose lipped maybe. But but I love the idea of introducing someone you don’t know, get you to talk to somebody that’s outside your comfort zone, but ought not be because their fellow board

[00:31:27.74] spk_0:
member. Yeah,

[00:31:53.14] spk_1:
I had a program at one organization where I was uh, where we, we had board members go out after the meeting together and we assigned the groups so that we had a good mix and people would, would meet each other and and they were, the goal was for them to do that twice a year. Uh It’s all about time. Right? But we thought that was important time to spend so that they’d at least go out to dinner with half the board. Some of it depends on the size of your board and what you can accomplish, right? But we didn’t want groups of more than six because we wanted people to be able to talk with each other. So what we might send two groups of six out in different directions.

[00:33:04.64] spk_0:
Yeah. You know, and it’s interesting. I’ve seen people do very simple things at the beginning of a board meeting uh consultant I worked with, she always starts out every board meeting with a question. So tell me about the kind of music you like. Right, two seconds. Tell me about the most interesting book you’ve read recently and why? It was interesting to you. Right? I mean, two seconds we can do that at a board meeting. It loosens everybody up. It enables people who are introverts to have to say something to get out there and talk. It puts a limit for the extroverts on how much they can talk, Right? But it’s a, you know, so you can do devices like this, recognize it because it’s important, it’s important to recognize the importance of the board culture that unless we have that sense of connection between people, none of this stuff is going to work.

[00:33:11.14] spk_2:
Okay. And now let’s bring it to the, to the book title,

[00:33:13.90] spk_0:
Okay, Will Will fundraise,

[00:33:16.58] spk_2:
shall shall engage board shall fundraise.

[00:33:19.58] spk_0:
How is No, no, no, no. We didn’t use the word shall know. I, I added shall because that’s probably that’s perspective. Okay. Prescriptive, prescriptive, I know,

[00:33:41.74] spk_2:
yes, contract, contract you shall versus well, um, no, the book title is engaged. Boards will fundraise. So how does having better board meetings and board members knowing each other better through these simple social devices? Social methods

[00:33:49.74] spk_5:
improve our fundraising?

[00:36:09.83] spk_1:
Right. Well, as Michael has talked about a fair amount, it creates a team and a sense of joint responsibility. You think that it exists just because they have all joined this same organization, but you can’t just accept that in fact you have to work on it. So, by building this team, this camaraderie by by helping people understand each other. Uh, there is a shared sense of of, of responsibility. Second, by really engaging the board in these discussions and having the board understand the organization at a more nuanced and important level. It is easier for them to talk about the organization to feel comfortable doing it to represent it properly and to do it passionately, which is key to fundraising right? Being an ambassador for the organization. So many board members, uh, say I I don’t know enough about the organization to go out and talk about it. I’m afraid I’m going to say the wrong thing. I don’t know the organization like the executive director does. And one of the steps here is to get board members more comfortable as ambassadors talking about it. Uh, and it’s funny because I always say to board members, you don’t need to know all the details. You don’t have to know every little thing and all the numbers and such. You just have to be passionate and authentic to tell a good story and get people excited about the organization. And it incense goes hand in hand with the board meetings, Right? And if we’re concentrating on Mnuchin the board meetings, then the board members think they need to know the menu. Sha if we stay out of the Mnuchin the board meetings, then the board members can feel okay, this bigger picture is what’s important. So, so we build a sense of responsibility and we build, uh, more of a comfort in talking about the organization. We also build an understanding of why the funds are needed and what they will do, right? It’s not just, we need money. Uh, will you give me money? I love this charity, but this is the impact we’re going to have. They can talk about that. So, okay, so that gives them a basis for going on fundraising

[00:36:48.23] spk_2:
and that’s sort of a perfect transition to getting now to the discussion of engaging the board in the right kind of funding in fundraising. So, you know, listen, you just get, you got to get the book to, to learn more about how to engage your board. Um, they talk about the different duties of care and loyalty and obedience that board members have an, uh, governance. There’s, there’s good talk about governance uh, that you know, belonging in in one place and management, belonging by the other management, by staff, governance by the word. You gotta, you gotta be the book to get more of that detail about engaging.

[00:36:50.13] spk_5:
It’s time for Tony Take two.

[00:37:02.03] spk_3:
Oh, can I tell you how much I love sending podcast pleasantries. Thank you. I’m just grateful that you are a

[00:37:02.21] spk_5:
supporter of the show

[00:37:03.67] spk_3:
listening, whether you sample or you

[00:37:08.63] spk_5:
subscribe however you do it. listen all at once to 12 shows or you are the first one

[00:38:03.82] spk_3:
after the shows get published each monday. The first one clicking Thank you pleasantries to you are over 13,000 podcast listeners in aggregate, but you, you’re the person I’m talking to, I’m talking to you right now. I’m thanking. I thank you and I’m thanking you. That’s passive, isn’t it? I’m thanking you. I thank you. I know that’s active. Thank you. Thank you for listening. I’m glad you’re with us. Glad you’re supporting the show. I’m glad the show brings you value. Otherwise you wouldn’t be hearing me hearing me right now. You want to shut me off years ago. So thanks, thanks for being with me. Thanks for being with nonprofit radio That is Tony’s take two. We’ve got boo koo, but loads more

[00:38:06.37] spk_5:
time for

[00:38:07.82] spk_3:
engaged boards will

[00:38:10.41] spk_5:
fundraise.

[00:38:15.32] spk_2:
So now let’s talk about engaging the boards, you know, specifically in fundraising. Um, you two

[00:38:18.11] spk_5:
have

[00:38:19.12] spk_2:
was, I think six different six things, you know, like make the case identify the resistance. Is that the best way to talk through the engaging the boarding fundraising? Or is there a better

[00:41:15.91] spk_0:
way for me? There’s another way to start it. And that is what brian has been talking about right now is giving the board members the basic tools, Right? Thank you. They know how to tell a story or they’ve got a story to tell them. But one of the things that we look at is the fact that there is discomfort resistance about fundraising. It is not something we do in our normal lives, right? We, we do our jobs, we’re professionals, we don’t go out trying to engage other people in the things that we’re engaged in. Right? So they need help doing that. It’s part of the team. Thing is they want to feel, I want them to feel responsible to one another. But in addition, there has to be some guidance from either from fellow board members are from staff into how to do this. So board member says, okay, I, I know I know these, I know these people, you know, I’m comfortable with and I’m willing to talk about it. I’m a little, I’m uncomfortable asking them for something. They were gonna tell me, no, it’s gonna harm the relationship and stuff like that. So time needs to be spent. Either one on one with board members and within a member of the resource development Committee or is there a member to go through? Okay. Let’s figure out how you do this one with respect to the resistance that you have about it. How do you overcome that resistance? You know, what do you do? So, for example, one of the techniques I told board members is you never want the first conversation you have with somebody about your organization to be a conversation we’re asking for money. That’s the kiss of death. So what you’ve got to get to do is OK, here’s what you got to do over the next few weeks. You are you gonna talk to any friends? Yes, I’m gonna talk to some women. Okay. Here’s what I want you to do in those conversations. Find something that they’re interested in. That allows you to bring up your experience with this organization. You’re not asking for money. You’re not ask them to do anything. You’re just bringing this organization into the conversation. That’s your job. Okay. Now, after you do this, let’s come back and talk about it and tell us what your experience is. Now you can do this with the entire board, right? We’re at a board meeting. Okay, Everybody next week or between now and the next board meeting has to have one of these conversations with a friend come back and report at the next board meeting. Let’s see what we learned? What was difficult? What worked did they ask you questions? What would be the next steps? So they’ve got to both feel responsible for one another. But it also at the same time gets support from one another for doing this incrementally, because this is new to all of us. It’s new because you have

[00:41:31.41] spk_2:
an exercise in the book seemed ideal for a board meeting where you uh, you ask for board members to list their objections to fundraising and then list there a personal experience of either having asked or being asked in the past. And the two don’t do don’t align like the reality cancels out the objections exactly whose idea is that. Is that yours, Michael?

[00:43:10.90] spk_0:
Or that’s that’s me. Yeah, it’s a very simple exercise. You know, I I like to draw upon personal personal experience. I believe that board members got the answers to all these things I’m concerned about. They just haven’t talked about it. My job is to get them to talk about it. So, yeah, they’re going to tell me about I don’t want to fundraise. That’s going to be, this is gonna be that they’re going to hate me, bah bah bah bah bah fine. Okay. Now, let’s talk about what actually happened in your life? Have you ever given money to anybody? Why? What was there about that circumstance that made you comfortable and want to do that? So we take their experience and bring it back work. I just, I’m gonna intercept here and you can cut this out if you want. One of my later readings is I’ve gone back to the Socratic dialogues, Plato’s writings about Socrates because what Socrates believed was that everybody had the answers to all these important questions in their head and his job was just the program and ask the questions to get it out. And I believe, I believe this about boards. Our job is to use their experience, not tell them what they’re doing wrong. Take what they’ve done and learn from it and help them learn from it simple.

[00:43:13.70] spk_2:
You’re right. That that’s worthless. I’m gonna cut that

[00:43:15.63] spk_0:
out. Yeah.

[00:43:19.08] spk_2:
Right.

[00:43:19.58] spk_0:
But yeah. So

[00:44:21.99] spk_1:
you adding to what Michael said, one of the, one of the kickers here is board members having to ask all their friends only to be asked to give gifts in return to the other organizations that you know with pro quo. And I’ve been talking about this for a decade ad nauseam because it is horrible short term transactional fundraising. All transactional. And it’s gotten really bad in our field to our detriment. And everyone gets sort of, uh, the organizations get stuck on this. It’s like, uh, like cocaine, right? And, and, and and can’t move away from it. Well, we need the $50,000. The board raises and like, Okay, well your board is going to hate doing this type of fundraising, they’re not going to be inspired when they leave, all those gifts are going to leave with them and so forth. So you’ve got a short term gain, you’re getting some money in the door. But everything else is wrong. We don’t, I always had people good point

[00:44:25.11] spk_2:
about just the last one you said, I want to just amplify when the board members leave. Those kids are going with them. When I just, I just wanted to amplify that.

[00:44:33.85] spk_1:
When I say that to boards, a light bulb goes off, I say,

[00:44:38.03] spk_0:
I’m not,

[00:45:35.39] spk_1:
if I’m on the board and I leave the board, I’m not going to keep asking just if I could give gifts to all my friends. And what what happens when you have me as a board member, uh, do this is I end up giving money away to organizations I don’t care about just to be nice. And whereas it would be better if I gave all that money into my organization that I love and tell people you give it where you love where you, where you’re excited because then I’ve made a bigger investment in my own organization, have a bigger stake, more of an investor. And if I think I first wrote about this 10 years ago that if I had one wish in the nonprofit world, it would be to stop the quid pro quo fundraising today because it’s a Sisyphean task. It’s just not getting anyone anywhere. It’s keeping them from anything strategic and it and it is burning out the board members. And when board members come to the board often they’re on their first board. They assume that this is the type of fundraising we’re going to ask them to do, which is why they have such resistance.

[00:45:46.89] spk_0:
What do you

[00:45:47.39] spk_2:
want to see in in its place?

[00:48:49.57] spk_1:
What I want to see is the board members to serve as ambassadors and what I call many major gift officers. So let’s look, people look at the big shots, they look at the hospitals in the universities and these massive organizations Because they raise so much money and they’re very visible and they all have what we call major gift staffs. They have a staff whose sole responsibility is to take 150 200 prospects donors and cultivate and solicit them and steward them along. Right. And and those staff For year after year have these people have this portfolio if we want to call it that. And that’s great. But most organizations have a budget under $1 million. Most organizations are lucky if they have one development officer who’s doing everything. Special events, direct mail, grant writing, crowdfunding You name it and maybe has 5% of their time to actually go out and talk to significant individual donors. So what I want rather than this transactional fundraising is for every board member To be a mini major gift officer with four prospects slash donors on their radar screen who they stick with and those may or may not be their own contacts. Many organizations have people who need more attention than they’re getting and they don’t get it because the executive director and our director of development don’t have the time. I’d sooner see the board members taking donors out to coffee calling them and thanking them for gifts, attending cultivation events with them and asking them what they think than being worried about soliciting the gift. I’m much less concerned about board members asking for a gift. They don’t have to ask for a gift as a matter of fact and I only was thinking of this this past week. Major gift officers don’t always ask for the gift. So I was a major gift officer from my alma mater. I was in charge of solicitations in the midwest big gifts. And you know, there were times I asked many and there were times when someone else asked the president, the senior vice president, a volunteer. This idea that just because you’re cultivating and Stewart and someone means you are the Askar, it actually doesn’t even add up with professionals. So I want the board concentrated on this other work, which most of them are willing to do. Oh, I’ll happily call for people and thank them for their gifts. So I’d be happy to take people out and thank them and get to know them better. Ask them if they’ll come with me or send them a personalized update. And this is incredibly important work. If we’re going to build relationships. And the other point I put out, the three of us know the numbers that most, Most of the money, most of the charitable gifts come from individuals, 85, everything. Yeah.

[00:48:56.82] spk_2:
When you had requests, it’s like 88 or so, but it had requested 77 or something like

[00:49:39.47] spk_1:
that. The largest gifts come from people, we know if you look at your own given right and where them and individuals are really loyal. I ask people all the time on boards. This is part of breaking down that resistance. What’s the longest number of consecutive years you’ve contributed to an organization Now for many, it’s our alma mater, right? So I graduated in 84. I’ve been giving to them for 37 years and I’ll give them till I die. And many people do. That could be your church. We give for decades. So we don’t, it’s not about the short term win. It’s about what I call an annuity of gifts over what could be decades. If you bring someone in them, they get excited most of our organizations or institutions that are going going to be doing our work forever. Some are meant to put themselves out of business and resolve some problems. But most nonprofits will be here for 100 200 years assuming the planet is and helping people with medical needs, helping seniors, helping kids get educated, whatever it is, building community and we want people to have a state for a long time. So let’s have board members helped build that state with these individuals

[00:50:38.96] spk_2:
and that that also relieves board members of the, the fear and anxiety of having to be the solicitor. You know, some board members will step up to that. Uh, some will with training but it’s not necessary. You’re saying board members can be building the relationships in all these different ways. May be hosting something in your home with four or 6 couples or something. All these different ways. You

[00:50:42.79] spk_5:
mentioned the thank you,

[00:50:43.66] spk_2:
notes the acting as the ambassador all these ways and then maybe you’re cultivating them for someone else to do

[00:50:50.59] spk_5:
the solicitation.

[00:50:54.56] spk_2:
Maybe maybe the board member is involved in it or maybe not. You know, it doesn’t have to be

[00:51:18.26] spk_1:
right. It goes back to the good cop bad cop, the board members, the good cop and then brings the executive Director of director development and to ask for the gift that’s perfectly legit perfectly legit. I played that role many times as an executive Director Director of Development. Where I asked uh, yeah, where the board member cued it up. But I was the Oscar

[00:51:48.36] spk_2:
right and you’re collaborating in the relationship, the board members reporting back, letting the Ceo no, you know, this is, this is how it went with her baba. You know the ceo is asking, you know, do you feel like it’s maybe it’s the right time for me to ask or for us to ask or is it still too early? Or look, she expressed interest in this particular program. And you know, the board was just talking about expanding that, putting putting more resources to that. This could be a very timely topic for me to bring up at a meeting with her or or the three of us know you’re collaborating around the relationship strategizing about when the best time is to actually do the

[00:52:34.05] spk_0:
solicitation, right? And going back to board meetings for a second. One of the things you want to do with the board meeting is acknowledged. The people that have done this. You know, wow, let me, let me tell you, the executive director says, let me tell you that. You know brian and I brian introduced me to so and so and we had a meeting and you know, we walked away with a check for $5000. Thank you brian, do you do right, celebrate it builds it celebrate the winds and it builds it into the culture. You don’t want to be the only one who never gets thank you. Right.

[00:52:38.45] spk_2:
Let’s talk about the expectations, establishing

[00:52:42.07] spk_5:
expectations around

[00:52:44.45] spk_2:
giving and fundraising for board

[00:52:47.21] spk_1:
minimums. Yes, who wants

[00:52:49.37] spk_2:
to kick that off. Let’s spend a little time with that. Yeah brian

[00:55:36.44] spk_1:
can I? Because I’m, I have, I’m rabbit about this one actually to, um, I cannot stand minimums and given gats I give or gets Excuse me. I believe that everyone should do their best on both. Besides everyone should give a personally significant gift as an investor in this organization and do their best at fundraising. And uh, without going into great detail, what I see time and again, there’s a minimum gift ends up being a ceiling out of floor. You think everyone’s going, ok, everyone’s gonna give at least this. But most people then give that, it feels like dues. You set the, the amount low so that most people can reach it, you still have some who can’t. And, and it’s been proven again and again, that, uh, that minimum gifts do not generate the largest gifts, minimum gift requirements don’t help. And people say, well, how do board members know what to do? And I said, well from the very beginning, and we talk about a job prospectus in the job description, You tell prospective board members, here’s the range of gifts we have board members giving anywhere from $500 to $5000 depending on their capacity. We ask people to do something very significant given the who they are and what they can do generally right. We want everyone to feel that they’ve made a gift they thought about that’s important to them. Some people ask for one of the top three gifts you give anywhere, which is a very concrete way to put it in and, and works. So on the gift front, you give people guidelines. And here’s, here’s an interesting thing you actually asked board members for a gift. I’m amazed. We’ve never best fundraising, best practice fundraising. We ask our major gift donors for an exact amount, Tony would you consider a gift of $10,000, etc? And yet we let our board members just give whatever they want to give. Why would we do that? I really push asking every board member for a specific amount that, that, that is personally significant to them. Makes them think about what’s significant And on the get side, I really believe it should be the best of your ability because if we say you’ve got to give or get 5000 a board member with a lot of capacity can just give the whole thing and not do any work or swap gifts with friends. And yet and the board member with less capacity is left, um, doing the hard work and that doesn’t make for a team. Everyone needs to do the hard work together.

[00:56:58.63] spk_0:
There’s a couple of, I mean I’ve learned this from brian’s and that’s my, become my mantra, working with working with boards about personally significant gifts and there’s a couple of, there’s another consideration now, especially with, with our desire to diversify our boards, polls, we may be reaching into populations that don’t have access to resource, but they’re important in terms of perspectives that they bring to our deliberations. And so having this as the standard personally significant gift for everybody. It’s equal. We’re all equal. We’re all giving the best we can. Another part of that. And I really like what brian says about, you know, asking our board members, it’s a negotiation, right? It’s not a no, I I need $1000 from you. And that’s what you gotta do because you’re a board member. It’s what I, you know, let me, let me tell you what I give. Okay, Okay. And now here’s what I think might be reasonable for you. Let’s talk about it. Okay. Is it is that a reasonable gift for you? It’s not demanding its opening a conversation as, as the possibilities. So, you know, I mean, I’ve done some capital fundraising and very often we ended up in a negotiation. You know, I asked, I went in asking for a certain amount, which I thought that person could give or we thought that that person could give when I put that number on the table and kept my mouth shut for a few minutes. You know, so they came back and they said, well, you know, that’s a little, okay. Let’s talk about it then.

[00:57:20.23] spk_2:
Support. Support training. It could be training could be staff, support for the, for the board that the, that the, uh, the employees, the staff are, are obligated to give either their own or through a consultant. What kind of, what kind of board, what kind of support do we need to give our board members around fundraising?

[00:57:41.83] spk_0:
Yeah, there are two,

[01:00:39.01] spk_1:
two pieces here. The first gets back to something, Michael said a long time ago about staff and the need for staff support in terms of the board meetings and the board members being involved, board members will only help with the fundraising. To the extent they have staff support. They’re always gonna need staff guidance materials, someone to bounce ideas off of and, and such staff need to be managing this, reminding board members of, uh, their next action step with a certain donor, um, providing materials and so forth. So, staff have to keep the tracker, as I call it this, even if it’s an Excel spreadsheet with a list of everyone and who does what and, and, and, and constantly move the process forward. But probably the most important thing is training because as Michael noted, board members come with very little experience and a lot of trepidation and the more training they can get, the more comfortable, they will be the more comfortable and effective. I always ask when I do a training, how many of you have ever been asked for a gift, The way we’re talking about it. How many times has someone said, Michael would you consider sitting down with me so I can ask you for a special gift, our organization. The truth of the matter is with all the asking out there with all the fundraising in every form. Very few people end up in these conversations. It’s the big, big, big, big donors. Right? And, and so many board members have never been on the other side of the equation and really have no idea what one of these meetings about. They assume you just go in and you ask for money. You just say, you know, will you give this? They, there’s no way for them to know because they haven’t experienced it themselves. So we need to teach them what it is. Uh, and that it’s all about the relationship, which definitely takes some of the pressure off. It’s always about the relationship and it is never about the gift to me. That is the number one rule in fundraising and I will leave money on the table time and again. I just, I just coach someone an hour before this conversation who’s the head fund raiser for a program within the school because a donor um, offered up an amount before being asked for an amount and it’s a significant amount and a big step forward. And the question becomes, do I go back, do I negotiate? And some of this is happening by email and I said in knowing the stoner, I said, you take the wind, it’s about the relationship. This is much, this is big for you. There’s always next year, the year after and so forth. So teaching board members, it’s about the relationship, not the gift, whatever happens this year, that’s okay. We’re building the relationship helps them feel more comfortable because they think they’ve got to go in and come out with whatever you all were hoping for. You know, it’s a, it’s a, it’s uh, and we’re guilty of building this mindset. We as a culture.

[01:03:05.00] spk_0:
The other side of it is that there are some very, for me very simple things that boards can learn how to do to build a relationship. For example, one of one of the things I very often do with a board retreat, simple exercise or on fundraising, I told people, look, you’re now going to somebody, you’re sitting in somebody else’s fundraising dinner and there’s somebody sitting next to you. Okay, So you want to have a conversation with the person sitting next to you, get to know them. So here’s your job. You’ve got to ask that person questions about what they’re interested in their lives and so on and so forth. And you’re looking for some place in them that connects with your organization. Then when you find that place, then you can introduce your organization, but that’s your job and we, you know, we pair up and people around, you know, around the room, sit down and try to have these conversations and realize that they can, because these the way in which we want to build relationships is a technique and it’s something we need to practice and become comfortable with. You know, people are not used to really interestingly asking questions. We all tell people things about ourselves, but we don’t ask them questions about themselves. So I mean that’s one of the pieces of support, right? Doing those kinds of things, telling stories quick, you all went to visit a program, tell me something that happened in that program that you saw that really was important to you that inspired you. That made you think about the value of this organization. Tell me the story. Well, people don’t know how to tell stories. They have to learn how to tell stories. It’s it’s but it’s a very simple, you know, these are not complicated techniques, but it’s all part of becoming comfortable in what brian is talking about in this ambassador role, relationship building a relationship relationship. I love the relationship,

[01:03:13.80] spk_2:
not the gift. Like that, brian. All right, we’re gonna leave it, we’re gonna leave it there with the, with the support

[01:03:14.55] spk_5:
idea. You

[01:03:28.60] spk_2:
got to support your board members, Michael Davidson, consultant and coach. He’s at board coach dot com. Ryan saber asking matters, asking matters dot com And he’s at brian Saber, Michael brian thanks very much. Terrific.

[01:03:32.80] spk_0:
Thank you. It was a pleasure tony great questions. Thank you. My

[01:03:36.34] spk_2:
pleasure. I’m just, I’m just trying to keep things going. Look book and

[01:03:40.96] spk_0:
the book, the book, I’m it’s

[01:03:42.61] spk_2:
Michael and bryan, who cares about Michael, Bryant’s the book you want? The book is,

[01:03:46.72] spk_0:
the

[01:03:49.80] spk_2:
book is the book is engaged, boards will fundraise how good governance inspires them. It comes out this week, this week of october

[01:03:58.74] spk_0:
18th. Yes,

[01:04:00.34] spk_2:
it’s not a long book, but it is long on value as you can tell from this outstanding conversation, lots of value in the book

[01:04:08.69] spk_5:
next week.

[01:04:09.65] spk_3:
Deborah Kaplan pa

[01:04:13.29] spk_5:
loves new book. The time for

[01:04:14.99] spk_3:
endowment building is

[01:04:17.45] spk_0:
now

[01:04:19.49] spk_5:
also very emphatic,

[01:04:20.77] spk_3:
just like uh just

[01:04:22.23] spk_5:
like engaged boards will fundraise

[01:04:39.79] spk_2:
if you missed any part of this week’s show. I beseech you find it at tony-martignetti dot com. We’re sponsored by turn to communications pr and content for nonprofits. Your story is their mission turn hyphen two

[01:04:40.92] spk_5:
dot c o

[01:04:42.89] spk_2:
Our creative producer

[01:05:13.09] spk_4:
is Claire Amirov shows social media is by Susan Chavez. Mark Silverman is our web guy and this music is by scott stein, thank you for that information scotty You with me next week for nonprofit radio big non profit ideas for the other 95% go out and be great. Mhm

Nonprofit Radio for September 13, 2021: Effective Fundraising

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Warren McFarlan: Effective Fundraising

That’s Warren McFarlan’s new book. It’s written for potential board members, but it’s a valuable study for those on the ground, doing the work.

 

 

 

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[00:00:02.84] spk_2:
Hello

[00:00:09.59] spk_1:
and welcome to

[00:00:10.46] spk_2:
tony-martignetti non profit

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Radio big non profit ideas for the other 95%. I’m your aptly named host of your favorite abdominal podcast. Oh, I’m glad you’re with me. I’d be hit with like the Asus vulgaris if you drive me out with the idea that you missed this week’s show effective fundraising. That’s Warren Mcfarland’s new book. It’s written for potential board members, but it’s a valuable study for those on the ground doing the work. tony state too planned giving in the pandemic era were sponsored by turn to communications pr and content for nonprofits. Your story is their mission turn hyphen two dot C. O. It’s my pleasure to welcome Warren McFarlane to the show. F Warren Mcfarland is the Albert H. Gordon? Professor of Business Administration Emeritus at Harvard Business School. So F Warren McFarlane is the guy I’m talking to. Albert H. Gordon is the guy who endowed professorship He fr McFarland has spent the past 40 years serving on social enterprise boards, helping organizations find the right leaders advanced their missions and raise the necessary supporting funds. I don’t know anything more about Albert H. Gordon. F Warren Mcfarland is a retired esteemed professor. You don’t need a website. You don’t need twitter Warren, welcome to the occasionally crass

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non profit radio it’s directly with you this morning.

[00:01:54.74] spk_1:
What’s a pleasure? Thank you for joining us. Congratulations on the book.

[00:01:56.44] spk_0:
Thank you very much it’s been uh

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and you’ve written it for trustees are really potential trustees, but I think there are a lot of good lessons in here for for folks who are doing fundraising. So that’s why, you know, because our audience isn’t so much potential trustees, but it is fundraising on the ground in small and midsize nonprofits. So very apt subject. And I was glad to hear about your book. You Pretty much open with a chapter chapter #2 on governance governance. Why do you, why do you put governance ahead of getting into the fundraising topics in the

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book? I think because governance sets the context for fundraising. The governor’s committee on the board, I think is probably the most important of the committees and they are the people responsible for identifying the people that will serve on the board. That will be able to help, uh, fundraising in one way or another, either personally or helping to make connections, general context and, and, and so forth. So that I really put it up because the three major roles of a nonprofit board, our number one approving the mission and the strategy of their uh, number two, hiring retaining and supporting the Ceo and certainly basically helping to secure the funds. And that’s a hard, difficult kind of things. My friends who head up nonprofits repeatedly say it’s 50% of their time that is spent on that. And it’s just hard, difficult kind of work. And that’s why I really, you wrote the book to help focus new board members attention on how vital their role was in helping to set the context for an organization to succeed.

[00:04:00.94] spk_1:
Yeah, fundraising. So let’s give a shout out to your previous book, which dealt with those three topics, but this book fleshes out the fundraising that the third of Exactly yes. Your tell folks what your your first book was that had more focused on the first two of those

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the

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roles of the board.

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The first, my first book was really aimed on governance of nonprofits, what a board member needs to know. And it really looked in a very broad kind of way. You’re focusing on mission structure, uh budgeting, planning and so forth. And that fundraising was one of the pieces in the book, but it was such an important piece. And I’ve been spending so much time working on it that I really felt there was need for another book to kind of taken and blow apart. Was one chapter in the other book into the, into this book.

[00:04:50.04] spk_1:
Yeah, because we know fundraising is at least 50% of an effective ceos time spent. And you make that point in the book a couple of times, but give a shout out what’s the exact title of the previous book?

[00:04:56.56] spk_0:
Uh Corporate Information Systems Management, I’m sorry?

[00:05:00.07] spk_1:
No, no, that that can’t be a different book for a different,

[00:05:11.64] spk_0:
I have to have to go back and think of something, but it was basically joining a nonprofit board. What you need to know.

[00:05:26.84] spk_1:
Okay, so is that it joining? Okay, because we’re talking about effective fundraising, the trustees role and beyond. Uh, and, uh, okay. So the previous one. Okay, joining a nonprofit board. What you need to know? Exactly. Right. Well, I don’t know why I doubted the author of the book. Just you maybe a little nervous when you talk about corporate information systems. I don’t know. That’s a

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different, wasn’t really part of my

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life. It’s a different, it’s a different book. The man’s prolific. You know, he gets, he’s written so many books. He gets the book titles confused. That’s all right. All right. Um, I’m not sure that many of our listeners, again, small and mid sized shops have a governance committee specifically. What’s, what’s the role of that committee? They may be doing governance maybe in their executive committee. Perhaps it doesn’t get smaller, smaller and midsize or what’s the role of the governance

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committee? It’s basically, it’s a nominating committee. Its role is to attract, uh, the right kinds of trustees to the organization to help talk them into doing it, to help get them, uh, slotted into the right kind of role. Worry about getting the right people and then helping them as when they finished their term to be involved in other ways because one of the critical things. And so I view that, uh, for for profit boys are very different. I’ve served in a number of them. They’re very exciting. And when you’re over the job is over. You’re gone for a nonprofit board. This is meant to be a lifelong relationship and one of the organization work. That’s right now why we’ve Now developed a committee of some, uh, 35 former board members. We have them sitting on various committees and so forth. And with that, they have stayed involved with the organization. And with it comes a philanthropy. They’re building willingness to keep people you involved. So is this an entirely different kind of concept? And it means that you have to that a nonprofit board is often less efficient because you have to deal with people’s idiosyncrasies in a way that you don’t in the for profit world because I’m not actually going to take a major donor who’s a little bit careless and sort of, you’ll cut them off too sharply.

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Yeah. You make a good point about the trusteeship and the end of the trusteeship still being a, uh, warren, are you able to silence those? Um, that sounds like an email notification you’re getting. Are you able to,

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I’m sorry.

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Okay, no problem. Thank you. Um, the end of the trusteeship is just a continuation in the spectrum of the, the lifetime relationship with the nonprofit. I, I think a lot of non profit to make a mistake there and they figure, okay, the person served three years, six years, Hopefully not more than six. That’s another subject. But, you know, they’ve served their time. And, and now they just, you know, we hope they’ll continue to give. But that’s the end of sort of the, uh, it’s the end of the volunteer volunteering of the relationship. And I think that’s a mistake. Your, your former board members. You know, there may be an emeritus board or some kind of an advisory board or, you know, some other way to not lose that expertise that they gained while they were trustees.

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Yeah, that’s, uh, that’s exactly the key point that I recall her often, a board of advisors or a corporation or two things that people, you know, calling for. And that was it. One of the jobs economic committee is to help figure out what the new, as somebody comes near the end of their term, how they will be able to be involved and get them involved in in the right kind of way now. And that basically tremendously increases your footprint. You must have term on that because you need to continually bring new people in while you’re bringing them and then in why taking care of the older people is, is, uh, can be, it’s, you’ve got a lot of value ideas and also philanthropy wise.

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Yeah, yeah. Think through that, that post board member post trusteeship relationship,

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I’m involved in four board, I’m involved in for nonprofit boys. Now, the links to them go back over almost 40 years and it’s evolved from one setting to another. And the power, you know, grows. And so that there was an annual giving then there was, uh, capital campaign giving. And at my stage in life now, why planned giving? It turns out to be a particularly important thing.

[00:10:25.04] spk_1:
Sure. Yeah. You say the fundraiser is an educator of donors. That’s a, that’s a pretty, uh, basic lesson. But I want you to flush it out for folks because sometimes basic lessons are, you know, they’re foundational for a reason they’re worth revisiting and thinking about why, why do you say fundraisers are educators of donors?

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It’s really helping somebody to understand how they can go about, um, contributing in ways they haven’t thought, I mean, they, that I’m working with somebody right now and they’re that some tragedy in their family. And we’ve been able to sort of help them think through how this new facility they’re building, is going to help the organization and help their grief and fill their needs. So that, uh, it’s, uh, it’s very important that when I go out and ask people from, uh, you know, for money, I’m not asking them for money. I’m asking for them to be able to contribute contribute to society in a way bigger than they can on their own. And it’s, it’s really opening up an opportunity for the person opportunity they often haven’t thought about in their, in their own ways. And that you’re one of the things that died. And I talked about this for trustees is that the first thing that I do is in fact, the trustee is you’ve got to believe in the cause and have made your own contribution because when it comes right down to crunch time and I’m looking somebody in the eye and they say warrant, what have you done first? You know, this is my number one or two financing and this is and here’s why I’ve done it. That there’s a credibility that that comes out of it. And the reality is that many donors, their lives are busy and they haven’t thought through the array of alternatives they can contribute to and how they can go about extending their leverage.

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So the fundraisers job is to educate, educate them and educate about the work that’s being done also what those exactly those programs are doing. Um I I presume you’re a believer in 100% participation, fundraising participation on the board.

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Absolutely. I mean on the one hand and say, and people give in relation of capacity, I was the chairman of the board of the hospital. I’m sorry. You

[00:12:39.30] spk_1:
cut out a little bit there people

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give chairman. I was a chairman of a border.

[00:12:42.79] spk_1:
Wait 11 further step back. People giving what level, What did you say?

[00:13:07.34] spk_0:
I say people, Uh, it’s not the level that you give your question. It was your your question was do I believe in 100%. I do, but I want to say at the hospital board share. I valued the $25 I got from the homeless mother in East Cambridge As much as I did. The 200,000 from the main present because she was the eyes and ears of the community. She gave enormous value and her commitment was to the institution. So that’s why I believe in the 100%.

[00:13:30.14] spk_1:
Right? And, and of course for someone without a home, $25 as a stretch gift. So, yes. All right. And so you you would you go along the philosophy that there’s not a minimum giving level for for for every board member, every board member gives something that’s a stretch for their capacity, given their capacity. Is that is that how you would define it?

[00:13:44.54] spk_0:
Or? The answer is yes. But uh, yes. Yes. But

[00:13:50.98] spk_1:
that’s fair. Yes.

[00:13:51.89] spk_0:
Yes. It is on the real high end gifts. I might be willing to be the number of four philanthropy. I have two or three situations I’ve been in where, you know, somebody has given me a sort of a go away uh, token gift to them which has actually helped the enterprise meets goals. They didn’t even know they could have. So, I mean, it’s one of the things that we find in uh, in 2021 is that the shape of the giving pyramid has really become much steeper and taller. And so therefore the people at the top of the uh, the Jeff Bezos, his wife Mackenzie and so forth. I mean they uh, a small gift for her is a transforming gift, you know, for the receiving your organization. So that’s, that’s kind of the exception that I was referring to.

[00:15:04.24] spk_1:
And then after someone has given you, you talk about stewardship as you know, the engagement of past donors and trustees. And you say, stewardship is not an overhead item, but an offensive weapon. So let’s talk about stewardship. What, what, why? Why again, basic lessons. But, you know, I want people to get your perspective, ownership is a stewardship is so damn important,

[00:16:29.24] spk_0:
um, that you give a gift, um, for, uh, let’s say for an endowed chair that you maybe do that if you’re in your fifties or sixties, that when they come back and tell you how that chair is performing, it’s an opportunity for them to engage your thinking on the next level and the next level that, uh, one of them is going through a very different situation hospital where they didn’t report how the gifts were doing. You know, for people they gave, and they were wondering why people were dropping off the whole notion of it’s a lifelong engagement. And when you come in to tell somebody how their, uh, previous investment organizations doing, there’s a lot of interest on that part of the person hearing, how did their money do, But you’re also there in the opportunity to talk about other kinds of things and opportunities and move the discussion forward. And it may have been that an annual fund gift around the class reunion that may in due course lead no to a capital campaign. You’ll give, you know, somewhat further on down the road and it may be a plan gift even, you know, you know further down the road. And of course the art of the question is when you’re managing these lifelong relationships, you have to be careful not to move too much clothes quickly because if you in fact uh, get the short term gift, you may also be turning off the long term relationship, which can be more important. That’s that’s why this is such an art to this, this fundraising.

[00:17:19.84] spk_1:
Yeah. And and there’s a whole variety of stewardship methods, you’re focusing on reporting on the impact. But you know, if, if the first few gifts are, you know, in the 150 to $500 range, No, that’s, it’s hard to place impact, put impact upon that. But how, how would you steward those three and low four figure gifts? Uh

[00:18:15.94] spk_0:
It’s actually your point is that one of the first things when somebody graduates from college is we have all kinds of incentives to just get in the habit of giving $50 for $100 you know, for each of the 1st 10 years and you have a 10 year giving club that has given 10 years in a row, all 10 years enrolled for a, somebody who’d gone for 22 to 32 doesn’t add up to a lot. But the habit of delivering the habit of giving the engagement and so forth. That’s what’s really laying the seeds for much deeper support of some of them. You’re further down the road. And

[00:18:59.44] spk_1:
that makes me think of another stewardship method. You know, the recognition society, I think a lot of folks don’t think about having a recognition society based on longevity of giving. So you know, of course you’re using the, you know, 10 years, someone graduates from college if you can get them in a habit of giving for 10 years, there’s a very good chance unless you blow it That, you know, they’ll be giving for the next 40 and 50 years in increasing increments and in different ways and as as you’ve talked about. But that that method of recognizing giving for longevity, those folks who have been given to you for 25, 30 years and there’s longstanding organizations that have donors that do go back that far And maybe, you know, maybe maybe out of 30 years, the person missed two years as you give them a break or something, you know, but what you have, I mean, I longevity, not just the dollar amount each year

[00:20:08.64] spk_0:
as you’re talking about a fearful reports from right to my mind where the little asterisks, beside the people who’ve given for each of the last 10 years and double asterisks for the last one and you actually look at it and that of course is, you know, one of the things that’s important is that development people want to a point that putting out development reports and give them reports and so Fort is very expensive and you really should do this on the web and on screen. The fact of the matter is when I’m at my most philosophic, I’m flipping through report and I’m saying what my classmates or associates did on, it’s an organization my Children involved, I may flick back down to another part of saying and it just turned out to be false economies and a lot of the people that have undone the paper stuff and brought online have had to back off the other way because discussions and ruminations which were important were taking place.

[00:20:14.10] spk_1:
Yeah. You, you, you have some uh, anecdotes about that in, in the book which you know, we can, we can go, we can’t dive into all the stories. You just got to get the book. You just got to buy effective fundraising. So

[00:20:50.94] spk_0:
just start, uh, it starts from the very beginning, I think for example, uh, as I entered Harvard College as a freshman And my second day there, I’m sitting with 1100 people in the room and somebody is talking right and left and those are the people that aren’t there because you’re there and you’re feeling pretty good. And the next comment he made blew my mind, he said, and every last one of you was on financial aid. Uh, my father did not communicate me, talked a lot about the expense and he said, you’re here because of the philanthropy and generosity of the generations that came before. But at your 25th reunion, you will have an opportunity, will pay that generosity and the numbers went something like that. That thing just slow across the room. And 1100 mines. A lot of it’s stuck there. And, and the 20th reunion, there was a $200,000 gift. And at the 25th, there was an 8.5 million and the 35th. It was a 25. And that the habit, you lay the idea down very early

[00:22:40.24] spk_1:
On the very first day, they say 25th, he’s already got you giving to the 25th reunion. That’s right. Right. Right. All right now. seven. It doesn’t have to be a college. There’s there’s a very good lesson there. My synesthesia is kicking in. I’m getting goose bumps. Thank you. They listen talking about this. Uh, yeah, there’s a very good, you know, you get people in early and you and you and you cultivate those relationships. You cultivate that, that relationship long term from the, from the outset, You know, so, so for your organization’s, you know, take the lesson there. You may not, you may not be a school, you know, the first day of college, but you can be cultivating from the very early stages. Absolutely, a long term relationship. All right? Yeah, stewardship critical again, warren calls it an offensive weapon. Um, let’s talk about the head of the development Committee. This is something that I’m sure listeners do have. Even if, you know, even if it’s a small board, there’s at least a development committee of, you know, two, maybe three folks. But you spend time on the, on the, you know, in the, in the parties to the, to the board, talking about the head of the Development Committee and some skills that you like to see there. What what are you looking for in, in that position?

[00:26:09.54] spk_0:
If somebody who’s got to be able to mobilize other trustees to come and join in the giving operation, the ability to reach out, uh, into the rest of the board, make them understand this is part of their job. They had somebody who, whatever their going out and talking about the organization. The organization is in their mind maybe to me don’t, but uh, Is a, it’s a job that’s 24 hours per day, seven days a week, and even more so for the development person. But uh, I just remember a situation that, uh, I was heading up the capital campaign for a religious organization, came out in the Boston Common in early january, you know, the temperature was about two degrees, the wind was blowing. It was miserable. I had 300 yards to go and I ran into one of my former students, uh going on, he stopped and said, what are you doing? I said, I’m going off, you know, to to join this. Uh this just felt me, this religious organization said, oh, you know, I’m a member of that religion, this is somebody who has, his wealth was considerable. And I just kind of stopped and said, well, you’ll tell me more. The temperature suddenly went up to about 60 degrees, the wind dropped down and I said, I was a senior warden of my church down in New Jersey. Yes, I said, but you’re not there anymore, So which church do you belong somewhere? I’m now up with the one in Wellesley. And I said, that’s terrific. And we disappeared out. I got to the office and sat down and he said, listen, this is what it is all about. And that my former student was in his office, you know, three weeks later for lunch and over lunch, you know why? That the head of the terrorist organization uh expressed an interest to actually see this person perform in the classroom. And so I never want to see me teach. But he went and watched this summer student of mine no teach. And that led to another nice consistent pro bono consulting assignment. And uh and Result of the whole thing was system is about $500,000 gifts that took place in such a tasteful way, you never even know what happened, but that’s something you just do recognize the opportunity and you have to stop, you know, put the thing together. You got to be creative and the head of the Development Committee, I want them there. They need to breathe and live the organization. You know, 100% of the time, it means they’ve got to have a close working relationship with the Chief development on Mr. They have to have a close relationship with the Ceo to make sure that they’re always always in

[00:30:30.54] spk_1:
line. Great, great wisdom. Yeah. And uh, you say you want the person to be persistent and fearless and you know, that all that, that all is uh, epitomized by this story you just told that’s outstanding. Thank you. It’s time for a break. Turn to communications. They’ll help you find your voice and they’ll get that voice heard in the right outlets like The Wall Street Journal, the new york Times, the Chronicle of philanthropy, Fast Company Market watch many others where they have the relationships to get you heard. So what does this mean? Get your voice uh, find your voice and then get it out there. Well, defining the voice. They’ll help you craft your message. I mean, you’ve got your key points, but you want to make them cogently concise coherent. Look at that. Cogent, concise, coherent. Yeah, that’s what you want to do. So that when you’re talking to the journalists at these incredibly good outlets, You get quoted. That’s what you want. You want the quotes. I mean you know saying that you said something and then they paraphrase it. Yeah that’s pretty good to look. It’s your name, it’s your organization of course. But the quotes that’s the gold standard. Turn to will help you craft your message is you know what the message are. They’ll work with you to make it. What did I say? Cogent write, cogent, concise, coherent so that you get the quotes in these excellent outlets. So help you find your voice, they help you get that voice heard turn to communications. You know this your story is their mission turn hyphen two dot C. O. It’s time for Tony’s take two. I’ve got a free timely webinar coming up for you planned giving in the pandemic era. It’s graciously hosted by J. M. T. Consulting. I’m grateful for that. Their gracious. I’m grateful. We’re doing this on september 30th. From 2 to 3 Eastern time. I’m going to talk about what planned giving is who your best prospects are. Where to start your program and how planned giving fits in our pandemic era and of course you got to have the all important Q. And A. That’s where the focus goes on what you’re thinking what what is on your mind. I can only channel so much of you. I need you to fill in the rest. So that’s the all important Q. And A of course plenty of time for that also. So you have to make a reservation, it’s free. But you got to reserve, you go to J. M. T like Juliet mike tango from the old Air force days. Military folks will appreciate that. Also private pilots, JMT consulting dot com then events and then expert speaker series. That’s the only category they have. I would have put me under something like middling speaker series or lackluster speaker series. But alas, they don’t have those categories there. Of course. The problem is not going to create a category just for me as well. Just stick with their default category of expert speaker series and squeeze me in there. So that’s um, that’s where, that’s where you go. JMT consulting dot com events, expert speaker series. It’s all on september 30th two to three Eastern. I hope you’ll be with me for planned giving in the pandemic era. That is Tony’s take two we’ve got boo koo but loads more time for effective fundraising with Professor Warren Macfarlane. Another another part of the part of the board is the board chair. The chair and the Ceo the chair Ceo relationship that that’s critical. I’ve I’ve seen very dysfunctional relationships where there was micromanagement and you know, too much in the details. But I’ve also seen very healthy relationships where it’s it’s it’s supportive and collegial between the board chair and the ceo talk about that relationship please.

[00:33:47.34] spk_0:
It’s the most sensitive one. You know, in the, in the organization that the ceo is that it’s first of all, it’s peculiar to nonprofits. This is not known in the for profit world. And for that, the notion of an unpaid non executive chair of the board uh working with a paid seal. Uh the first problem is people have, coming from the private sector, have trouble understanding how that system works, that it means that the two have to be in public very much. It’s a Pataca. I can remember that, you know, one board that I chair, that the uh CEO and I would fight furiously but always 10 miles or more away from corporate headquarters. But when you’re there with the board and with the stamp, the hands around each other’s shoulders of the, like the jokes were going back and forth and you made sure you couldn’t put a slim nail you in between the two of us. I mean, that relationship is just an absolutely critical kind of one. Now, what’s also interesting courses, in some cases, why the chair maybe a very much of a development uh project, that there was a wonderful book that was just written by one of my former students said, hey Jim, who is a uh investment maker in in new york, he is chairman of the University of Russia’s Sir board of trustees. And his book describes, you know, how when he was asked to do that job, he said, I just can’t do it because I’m amazing. I need Rochester’s short of money. We need somebody to really raise the money and the president just kept working on. And finally my friends, these types of books, just what is the largest gift that’s ever been given To Roger? So it was back in 1926. George Eastman gave $26 million dollars and uh, he spent some more time and money and his family said Rochester did so much for me. We’re going to do a little bit more than that. Now that’s the chairman who, I mean, he gives with his treasure, he gives his time and his block and he’s a, he’s a remarkable person. He was an orphan basically from orphanages from the time he was age seven to age 16, and one in ROTC scholarship out of the orphanage, you know, into uh, into Rochester. But the whole notion behind that in terms of how our chairman can support is really, it’s, the chairman must be philanthropically oriented, must understand the development mission, must be able to uh, work around the strengths and weaknesses, you know, of the Ceo

[00:33:55.34] spk_1:
uh, fill me in a little inside baseball on corporate boards. What what’s the role, what is the role of a board chair on a corporate board.

[00:34:22.84] spk_0:
Um, the, in the, in the ideal world, the board share is a sports chair and Ceo and you have a president and chief operating officer boy. So the board share it, Uh, it’s basically, it’s, it’s the Ceo job. Now from time to time with emergence, You may have somebody left over from emergency you need to send with, so you may make them sort of a non executive chair of the board and give them a nice office about 10 miles away from corporate headquarters and the three years work while you work your way through your retirement, earn out and so forth.

[00:35:16.74] spk_1:
Okay. So it often is the, it’s the chairman, Ceo chair chair and Ceo. Okay. All right. So going back to nonprofits, what’s your advice warrant on fixing the relationship? I mean, if I think CEOs would know if they have a dysfunctional relationship, whether it’s micromanagement or maybe the board chair is too hands off. Maybe he or she is not a strong leader of the board, not a consensus. What, what advice do you have for the C. E. O. S. Two improve the relationship with the

[00:36:15.53] spk_0:
board chair? Well, there, there’s several things, you know, the first one is that The length of tenure of the board share, uh, is often just 2-3 years And if you want people to rotate through that. But the critical person, this is again, is the head of the governance committee that the head of the government’s committee is one of your wisest, most senior atrocities and their job is to make sure that that relationship is working. And if it’s not working to find a way to sort of you move the thing along, it’s a it’s just it’s a terribly difficult and awkward thing and of course it’s complicated because you know, people have tremendous egos, it’s alm except that uh the people amass the well father to do these jobs, they don’t suffer from an underdeveloped of self concept. And so how you deal with their he goes uh is very tricky,

[00:36:29.43] spk_1:
right? But so what, you know, what what specifically I mean, do we have a heart to heart conversation with them and say look, you know, I think, you know, and I know, you know, this relationship is not ideal. Can we can we talk about it or you know, or is it just, I mean, I hate to leave folks just wait until the board chair’s term has ended and then, you know, we hope to do better in with their successor,

[00:38:16.52] spk_0:
their to their to their their two or three different ways. The first one is uh the question is whether it’s the board chair problem or the C. E. O. I mean, this is of course, you know, one of the problems because in fact the paid Ceo does report, you know, to the board and to the board chair. So the the power actually lies on the on the other uh side that the question there that they’re all they’re all kinds of consultants who can come and help, you know mediate these things. But when you get to that level, it’s already broken in a distaste away and the hardest problem is to try and avoided getting in it at the beginning and that has to do with how you pick the people, you know, in in, in the roles and that uh, sometimes we was in a very difficult situation from your skull were uh, the new board share uh, just almost immediately immediately started pushing things in that as he learned about the organization, uh, he came up with a strategy just wasn’t going to work for them and we had to reach in and in the most tender way, get him out. But then this is because uh, to get him out knowing he could also be a supporter of the organization. And so it was just about as complicated as you can say to get the dirty deed done, but we love you, we need to and can help you and the boys a lot of scrambling and a lot of stomach just turned around and came to a happy ending on on that part of it. But if the strategy that was would not have worked and would have actually driven the organization the bankruptcy,

[00:39:08.72] spk_1:
you have to be very, very careful about circumspect about who you put in the board leadership, you know, if even even vice chair because the presumption is that the vice chair is gonna become the chair, assuming he or she is, you know, competent. So you have to be careful there and and other board leadership positions to its it’s very important and you you you’re right, I mean you can end up with uh it’s something that really is is detrimental to the organization and you’re stuck, you know, for two or three years.

[00:39:30.42] spk_0:
Well. And you know, this is of course why it goes back to your very first question when you asked me, you know, why did I pick the governance committee to start? It’s because that’s the place where these issues get sorted out and need to be sought on the strategic way. Mhm.

[00:39:31.32] spk_1:
Yeah. Put put time into thinking about these things and planning, planning, succession planning, I presume you have a succession plan for for the ceo you know, there should be succession planning on the board as well. You know, we talked about as people leave the board, but succession,

[00:40:09.31] spk_0:
oh we know the slots that you’re needing to recruit for. I always need to have a couple of uh potential board chairs ahead of the Finance committee, one or two heads of the development committee and the job, it’s a delicate because when you who clued somebody onto the board, you often have a view as to what role they’re going to be best set. They may not, however, understand that and they may be so excited to be on the board that they want to sort of dive into some area or they have neither skill nor So it requires some discussion to sort of make it that make that work out.

[00:40:58.01] spk_1:
Yeah, I was invited to be a board member once and I I turned it down because I didn’t think the organization had really thought through what benefit I could bring to the border. You know, why I’d be a good board member. Um, it was a smaller organization and I was supporting the work. But I I didn’t I just didn’t feel that they had done their due diligence around me and you know, why they wanted me. It was just, well, you’re a supporter, you know, you’re you’re in the area. So, you know, would you like to be a board member? And

[00:41:00.97] spk_0:
I mean,

[00:41:02.86] spk_1:
time, time constraints went into it also, but I didn’t, I didn’t feel and I continued supporting the organization, but I didn’t feel they had they were really taking board membership as seriously as they should, even as a small organization.

[00:41:18.91] spk_0:
Yeah. You never know until it does man, you got mixed into all these things and it can turn so bad, so you’re just much better to not get started and getting into one that doesn’t fit

[00:41:47.81] spk_1:
right. And then, you know, the embarrassment of you have made me having to leave before your term is over and then there’s bad feelings there, and I just Yeah, so think through, you know, be careful about, be thoughtful, be circumspect about who you invite on your board,

[00:41:49.02] spk_0:
That’s

[00:41:49.65] spk_1:
two or three years can be a long time with the difficult board member or a couple of board members. Two or three years can be a long time.

[00:41:58.11] spk_0:
Yeah. And a lot of them maybe, uh, sits here so

[00:42:09.60] spk_1:
well. Yeah, that’s a, that’s a long, that’s an awful long term. Six years. I mean I’m all for, you know, maybe extending for a second term, two or three years and then, and then the second term. But

[00:43:13.60] spk_0:
I remember this battle that I lost some years ago when on sports share and that uh, this person had endowed a new athletic field for one of the universities in the area. And we needed a new athletic feeling a little bit around the edges. Often I said, uh, I need him on the board. The head of the company said one, this isn’t going to just fit this question, but I’ll make sure he sits beside me every meeting, I’ll keep him under control. Said one even got two more years left, he’ll be here afterwards and we didn’t do it. Somebody else got the gift. But I’m pretty sure it was the right one because that they, there is a culture that you have to deal with. And that’s that if you have overtly disrupted people that can, in fact, that’s just supposed to people who have good clear ideas, well reasoned that are different than yours. That’s a whole different topic. But uh, loosely cannons learning around can can cause all kinds of difficulty.

[00:43:41.60] spk_1:
I think it sounds like you were wise to uh, to take the advice of the person and not bring that member honest, but that’s a very good point. You know, warren, you’re only gonna be here for two more years, they’ve got years after that and you know, and really, how well are you going to be able to constrain them? You know, if, if these, if the person becomes obstreperous in, in a, in a board meeting, are you gonna be willing to, you know, put them back in their place publicly in front of the rest of the board and maybe there’s staff in the room at the same time and that could have been ugly. So you were wise, I

[00:43:52.60] spk_0:
didn’t feel wise this time, but the way you describe it, you’re absolutely correct.

[00:44:20.59] spk_1:
Yeah, okay, we’ve said enough about how bad it can be. Um, so hopefully you have a good board chair ceo relationship, it’s, it’s supportive, its collegial like you said, you know, you, you couldn’t drive a thin nail between the two of you in public but you have, you have things out in private and, and, and there should be a lot of communication and I think a board chair and see, you know, they should be in touch. I don’t know what’s a week or so.

[00:44:22.25] spk_0:
It takes a month, right? It takes a lot of time. Uh, the ones that I was working on recently, it just turned out that uh I was taking 40, 30 to 40 hours a week of the chair. And that means you got to make sure you have the time uh to put into that

[00:45:14.59] spk_1:
too. Yeah, and the person that you’re asking has the time. Yes. All right, so I’ve been I’ve been looking forward to talking to you about planned giving. Yeah, because you have a chapter on plant giving and foundations, and I’ve been making a living a plan giving for A good number of years, 2400 years. Uh and your plan giving donor, it sounds like uh so and you’re you’re playing giving chapter, you spend most of your time, and it’s just, you know, it’s one chapter and you make the point that playing giving could be a series of books. And indeed, I have

[00:45:21.00] spk_0:
a I

[00:46:13.88] spk_1:
Have a 400 page treatise on planned giving, you know, on my shelf that I hardly ever have to refer to, but when I do it’s comforting to know it’s there. Um so, you know, your your chapter is an overview of you talk about iras and trust, different types of trusts and uh charitable gift annuities. Um um My focusing planned giving is now, so I I I I am a startup plan giving consultant. I I initiate the kickoff launched programs. Um So my focus is mainly on Will’s because I think that’s the place to start a plan giving program. Um but again you’re doing an overview, You’re not talking about starting a plan giving program. Your your chapter gives an overview of playing giving, but I’ve still been anxious to talk to you about it, especially, you know, because you’re playing giving donor to what what do you what do you see as the role of planned giving, how critical to you is

[00:49:23.97] spk_0:
This to me? It’s uh that it’s as you pass by a certain point in your life and I don’t know whether it’s 60 or 65 uh that the actuarial tables begin to sort of uh well differently. And that uh somebody uh is looking at once to make a meaningful gift and they may be worried about, you know, the cash flow and something like a channel remainder trust or channel annuity is that the donor life, the fact they’re able to give a big number And they in fact, no, they’re going to live for another 40 years. And so it’s a big deal that you and the other side, you know, the end is much closer than the dome. So it’s a very happy kind of situation. Uh And what it really does is that people who are going to worry about end of life expenses are able to use this set vehicles and there are all kinds of tax incentives. I mean the one I personally caught my attention was the I. R. A. I’ve spent 30 years of my life you know building that up at every step along the way for retirement income. And that somebody had developed wants to sit down and said that you do understand you know what the tax implication is when you die of the I. R. A. And by the time you look at he said this is actually free money because you’re not taking very much away from your kids and you’re giving a lot more you know to the charity. And so those discussions can be just enormously beneficial and it’s uh but you bring it up with sort of the right point in a person’s Your life at Harvard. We never heard about a charitable annuity at a reunion before the 45th reunion. And by the time becoming the 60th that’s all you’re hearing about these vehicles. So that that that that there’s a time and a place for it. And it also of course comes back to our earlier discussion of the of the uh the annual fund giver. The trustee who becomes a trustee emeritus contributes to a capital campaign. And then plan giving comes right on. And as you get into the habit of giving through the other things you become more receptive, You know, nor philanthropic about these later on in your life kinds of up to us. And that what you need there is you need people who are really specialists like yourself because there are 1000 ways you can put the thing together. And I picked just about six or seven or what are the most common ones to, to make them the point. But those are the ones which, uh, your hospitals and museums and college so forth. You tend, you tend to use.

[00:50:28.46] spk_1:
Yeah. And I see it as essential to the stewardship of donors. You know, you want that lifetime relationship. It’s, it’s stewardship over a long period. But in the, in that period there are, there’s cultivation and solicitation, you know, for the next gift. So as your stewarding over a lifetime, you’re cultivating and soliciting for different, different phases, you know, the annual, the, the major, the capital, the, and, and, uh, ultimately the planned gift. Um, so it’s, uh, so I’m interested in, you know, you as a, as, because I worked with a lot of plans giving donors. Um, I’ve worked with thousands through the years. Uh, but you know, I don’t get to have the conversation with them that I’m, you know, on the same level having with use. I mean, so I, I have to sort of suss things out a little bit. Uh, it sounds like for you, the tax advantages of, of the Ira, we’re appealing

[00:50:29.99] spk_0:
Well, but

[00:50:31.61] spk_1:
that tax advantage was moving for

[00:50:33.94] spk_0:
you when I looked at, I said, this is, this is a very inefficient way to distribute the IRA and my kids, I can,

[00:50:42.21] spk_1:
they’ll be taxed on.

[00:51:25.56] spk_0:
Exactly. And so therefore this is money that I can get much more leverage. And by giving out to the outside so that I’ve been really hammering at people that for the last uh, five or six years. Then you come back to the notions of, uh, where you want to make a really significant, you know, impact. And this is where charitable remainder trust uh, can be really helpful so that you want to sort of make a half million dollars million dollar gift. But you have to worry about keeping the food on the table through your declining years. And there, Oh, that uh, that you put the money inside for that trust. And it takes care of the income to your life or your life and your spouse’s life. But there’s a big number that goes to the, uh, the museum of the university of what? Not at the end. And then of course it becomes particularly interesting is still Harvard uh, does it very nicely, is that you can designate up to 49% of it to some other organization. And

[00:51:57.59] spk_1:
right, well, Harvard, Harvard is an outlier there because they have the Harvard Management

[00:52:00.88] spk_0:
corporation. But what that does

[00:52:11.85] spk_1:
just, that was just for your trust, most, most nonprofits can’t do that. And, you know, the trusteeship ends up being with the, with a Fidelity or Schwab or, you know, some, some financial institution.

[00:52:16.41] spk_0:
But what it does is it, uh, in that case it allows organizations that don’t have very sophisticated plan dealing. And you really worry about the investment advisors, they’re using uh you can sort of put that underneath the same, I’m broad and the fidelity to do the same thing.

[00:53:01.85] spk_1:
Your larger point that one remainder trust can help multiple charities. And yeah, I know you make the point in the book that Harvard Management Corporation allows that. So as long as I guess, I guess as long as 51% goes to Harvard 9% can go to other charities. Uh, But if it’s an outside manager and some some financial institution manager acting as trustee, then uh oh there is unlimited ways you can divide the, but then the lots and lots of charities from one single trust

[00:53:25.85] spk_0:
as somebody who makes a living designing these things. Of course, your greatest single friend of this is the U. S. Congress because the laws change. And just as soon as you have finally tuned strategy in one place, you’ll go off change and then you have to come back and you re think about it. So it’s it’s a it’s a it’s a continual ideally, once you getting along you can’t just do it right. And it’s done.

[00:53:54.05] spk_1:
Yeah. But this the significant tax code changes only come like every 15, 20 years or so. Yeah. So you’re you’ll go through a couple in a career. Uh, But again and again, you know, my work is mostly at the at the formation of planned giving level. I mean I’ve I’ve done $25 million dollar lead trusts and I’ve done multiple remainder trusts and hundreds of gift annuities, maybe thousands. I don’t know hundreds at least. Um, but my work is mostly at the formation stage, getting folks getting nonprofits set up with

[00:54:10.24] spk_0:
just how to do

[00:54:35.44] spk_1:
it. Let’s start asking with because let’s start asking for bequests simple gifts by will. Let’s start there. That’s the foundation. Uh, I believe of of any planned giving program is, is just a simple gifts by will. Um, and then in years later, you know, you may graduate to the more sophisticated gifts depending on the size of your organization. You might not, you might just, you might just be content with doing requests indefinitely and you’ll capture most of the plane gifts anyway because that they’re always the

[00:55:03.44] spk_0:
the most common comment is powerful. The will is, is the first place. And then of course, uh, way way back when that I can that I remember somebody, uh, one of, one of my ancestors uh, basically uh, was going to give a gift of, Of a, of a certain percentage of first stage and the other as you know, I don’t want to do it that way. You want to make sure that uh actually gets a specific money. And so instead of the percentage putting what you thought was a huge number, which was actually 1/10 of what we had it gone the other way. So you have to have all sorts of funny kind of twisted thinking that you have to sort of unravel that process.

[00:55:59.74] spk_1:
You, you flush that story out in the book. You tell that one in a little more detail in the book. So folks got to get the book. Um, warren, let’s, let’s leave folks with just, You know, you’ve got these 40 years of experience, multiple, multiple board memberships, board chairmanships. You’re a donor in your own right through times, decades and decades. Leave folks with some, some fundraising wisdom, please.

[00:58:02.02] spk_0:
I think that uh, philanthropy is fundamentally a very satisfying activity that basically you’re helping to move social causes along along that I next, of course, is the whole power of the nonprofit sector is that I have there there’s almost a spiritual aspect uh, built to it. I, I enjoyed my corporate boards. We make changes things that nature new parts or what, but there’s something different. There’s something different in the nonprofit and when you’re trying to sort of move society along in some ways that you think are, are important and uh, that what you have to learn is that all you have to educate people on the opportunities. Uh, that the book was originally with basically the nutritious e right after a lot of them are asked to be trying to be, the first thing they say is do you have to ask people for money because I’m not good at it. And the answer is yes. You are going to have to ask for it and we can train you how to ask for it. And it starts by, you’re basically making a major commitment because that gives you the passion and so forth to move the cause forward. But it’s uh, it’s when the four organizations I’m involved with now, he’s one of them are ones that I actually believe in the, in the mission in a deep internalized, you know, real kind of of way. And if I didn’t, I’d have, I’d have gotten involved in other things. Just mean, you can’t pick up new choices, a lot of ways that some of the smaller things I do, uh, they’re very interesting, uh, the kinds of ones that, uh, core values, but it’s, it’s an, it’s an opportunity, you know, to, to move the world forward. And that’s that’s that’s that, that that’s what why people give their time in the, in the treasure.

[00:58:10.32] spk_1:
Thank you so much. Warren fre Mcfarland, he’s a Professor emeritus at Harvard Business School. The book is effective fundraising, the trustees role and beyond. Published by Wiley Warren, thank you very much for sharing.

[00:58:22.23] spk_0:
It’s great with just terrific. Thank you so

[00:58:42.82] spk_1:
much. My pleasure if you missed any part of this week’s show, I Beseech you find it at tony-martignetti dot com were sponsored by turn to communications pr and content for nonprofits. Your story is their mission turn hyphen two dot c o. Creative producer is

[00:58:43.78] spk_2:
Clan Meyerhoff

[00:58:44.70] spk_1:
shows. Social media is by Susan Chavez. Mark Silverman is our Web guy

[00:58:52.92] spk_2:
and this music is by scott stein. Yeah, thank you for that information, scotty you with me next week for nonprofit radio Big non profit ideas for the other 95%

[00:59:12.72] spk_1:
Go out and be great. Mhm. Mhm.

Nonprofit Radio for May 31, 2021: BFD: Board Financials Dilemma

My Guests:

Andy Robinson & Nancy Wasserman: BFD: Board Financials Dilemma

What do you do for board members who can’t read your balance sheet? The authors of “The Board Member’s Easier Than You Think Guide To Nonprofit Finances” can answer that. Andy Robinson and Nancy Wasserman explain why understanding finances is critical so board members preserve your good work and protect themselves. Do their eyes glaze over when the numbers come out? We’ll help your board achieve financial literacy.

This originally aired on March 2, 2012 as show #81. This is show #540. Take a trip back in time with me. Of course, in 2021, your board members still need to understand your financials.

 

 

 

 

 

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Every nonprofit struggles with these issues. Big nonprofits hire experts. The other 95% listen to Tony Martignetti Nonprofit Radio. Trusted experts and leading thinkers join me each week to tackle the tough issues. If you have big dreams but a small budget, you have a home at Tony Martignetti Nonprofit Radio.
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[00:00:11.44] spk_0:
Hello and welcome to tony-martignetti non profit radio big non profit ideas for the other 95%. I’m your aptly named host and it’s March 2nd 2012.

[00:00:32.74] spk_3:
Who is that low energy uninformed imposter and that music. It’s May 31, This week’s show maybe from the deep archive, but that doesn’t mean we bring back a

[00:00:36.73] spk_0:
Host from six ft under.

[00:00:49.24] spk_5:
Hello and welcome to tony-martignetti non profit

[00:02:24.44] spk_3:
Radio big non profit ideas for the other 95%. I’m your aptly named host of your favorite abdominal podcast. Oh I’m glad you’re with me. I’d get slapped with a diagnosis of Takayasu says arthritis if you inflamed me with the idea that you missed this week’s show B. F. D. Board financials dilemma. What do you do for board members who can’t read your balance sheet? The authors of the board members easier than you think. Guide to nonprofit finances can answer that. Andy Robinson and nancy Wasserman explain why understanding finances is critical. So board members preserve your good work and protect themselves. Do their eyes glaze over when the numbers come out, we’ll help your board achieve financial literacy. Yes. This originally aired on March two, That was show # 81. This is show # 540. So take a trip back with me in time. Of course, In 2021, your board members still need to understand your financials, Antonis take two planned giving accelerator. We’re sponsored by turn to communications pr and content for nonprofits. Your story is their mission turn hyphen two dot c o. Here is B F D Board Financials Dilemma.

[00:03:08.34] spk_0:
Andy Robinson provides training and consulting for nonprofits in fundraising, board development marketing and earned income. He specializes in the needs of groups working for human rights, Social justice, environmental conservation, historic preservation and Community development. Nancy Wasserman has over 25 years of experience in community finance and social enterprise development. Her particular skill is working with clients on projects that must satisfy both financial and social or community goals. They worked together to co author the book, The board members easier than you think. Guide to Fund to nonprofit finances, published by Emerson in church. And I’m very glad that their collaboration brings them both to the show. Andy nancy. Welcome. Thank you.

[00:03:17.16] spk_2:
Thank you. tony

[00:03:18.37] spk_0:
Pleasure to have you both Andy. Pleasure to have you back

[00:03:22.21] spk_2:
to talk

[00:03:22.98] spk_0:
with you again. Thank you Nancy. Why is this important for board members to care about the financial condition of a charity?

[00:03:45.04] spk_1:
Because that’s really what your charges as a board member, you have the responsibility to make sure the organization is achieving its mission, and the way the best way to do that is to make sure it has the resources it needs to do it. Um And the financial statements and the finance, nonprofit finances is how you know, um pretty quickly what’s going on, especially if you’ve you’ve got that information. You also have some responsibilities to the community um to deliver non profit um uh that does achieve its mission and does it in a responsible and fiduciary fiduciary appropriate way.

[00:04:15.65] spk_0:
So board members are have a fiduciary duty to the charity, right?

[00:04:20.82] spk_1:
Absolutely to the charity and to the public at large.

[00:04:25.06] spk_0:
So why do you say the public at large?

[00:05:01.24] spk_1:
Why? Because the the uh in the U. S. The Internal Revenue Service typically gives charities a uh nonprofit designation which allows them to receive contributions and issue um tax deductible receipts. And because the US is for going that tax um on those on those dollars and giving the public a public benefit, um the IRS exercises oversight of non profit charities and make sure that they really are, um, delivering on their charitable

[00:05:03.78] spk_0:
purpose. So, there is some public money in here. It’s foregone foregone tax revenue

[00:05:10.61] spk_1:
at a bare minimum. Often there’s also, uh, direct public money from government grants or government contracts.

[00:05:19.64] spk_0:
And how about, um, financial problems that can occur within the, within the, um, within the charity? Like, um, you bring out an example in your book of, uh, people not getting their salaries paid, things like that,

[00:05:44.34] spk_1:
you know, you there is that, that oversight potential here, you’re, you are running a small business and, um, you want to make sure that your employees are well cared for, that you’re achieving your mission in, in the world at large. Um, sometimes in, in charities will see folks um, you know, giving up salary, um, and, or, um, deferring payment um, out of the goal of achieving the mission of the organization in the long term, um, that seriously hurts the organization because um, people aren’t really watching what’s happening with the money. Where is it coming in? Where is it going out?

[00:06:14.34] spk_0:
And Andy? Um, isn’t there potential personal liability for board members? When when there are problems like this, like nancy’s describing?

[00:06:21.51] spk_2:
Well, let me do the disclaimer here, which is that neither nancy nor I or attorneys and we can’t give people legal advice.

[00:06:34.24] spk_0:
Okay, Well, there’s no, yeah, I know we haven’t, nobody’s giving you a, I don’t know. The listeners have not given you a retainer fee, so not yet. No.

[00:06:54.34] spk_2:
Okay. I will say this. Um, if there is non payment of payroll taxes, for example, if a sensation goes into debt doesn’t pay the I. R. S. Or state taxing agency’s board members are individually liable for that. Most most expenses. Board members are protected from being personally liable on but there are some exceptions. So I don’t know that that’s what drives this conversation. Board members are simply looking at the balance sheet as a way of making sure that they’re not personally liable. That’s one level on this conversation but there’s a whole lot more levels having to do with the stuff that nancy was talking about. Are we being efficient meeting our mission? Are we tracking our work so that we know we’re being effective and that’s really what financial management is about.

[00:07:41.24] spk_0:
Indeed. Okay. There’s certainly a whole spectrum of reasons why board members should care. I just wanted to bring out the last one which is, there is the potential of, of personal liability. Um, let’s see. Um, we have just about a minute before a break and I’m hoping nancy, why don’t you introduce the idea of the financial dashboard and then we’ll talk a lot more about it right after this break.

[00:08:27.44] spk_1:
Sure. The financial dashboard is something we introduced that, that really gives you a one page sense of how the organization doing. What I’ve found happens with a lot of Nonprofits is that they, um, they give their boards just reams of paper and um, all of a sudden you get the budget and the performance and the balance sheet and there’s 15 pages of financial statements and most board members, even ones who do know how to read financials don’t plow their way through it. And so the dashboard is essentially a one page um, opportunity to get a sense of um, how are you operating financially? Are you being efficient and um, are you having an impact?

[00:08:36.84] spk_0:
Andy I want to throw a question to you quickly. We got a question on twitter from Mazarin. What if an executive director was found stealing one of the things nancy? And I were talking about uh, kind of fraud issues earlier. Um, would you give them a second chance?

[00:09:12.94] spk_2:
Oh boy. Um, well, I’ll be curious to hear nancy’s answer to this. My initial response No, followed by. It depends. And um, I actually was on the board of an organization where we found the opposite problem, which was the board Executive director was pouring money into the organization. He emptied out his retirement account, but he wasn’t telling anybody he did this because the grants weren’t coming through and he was too embarrassed.

[00:09:24.35] spk_0:
So that’s a, that’s a, that’s a problem of being over generous though,

[00:09:28.57] spk_2:
it was paying for himself. We ended up firing the guy and the reason was he wasn’t disclosing to the board what the board needed to do its job. And I would say the issue in that case isn’t so much as misdirection lying. So I am obviously theft is a bad thing, but the board needs full disclosure from the executive director to be able to do their job well. And that’s really where I would go on that.

[00:09:57.14] spk_0:
And how about you nancy? Uh Andy was curious to hear your answer and

[00:10:35.14] spk_1:
I know I would say um again like Andy, it depends um probably depending on the amount of severity and this situation. Um You know, if if the executive director was borrowing $20 from the petty cash um when they forgot to bring um their wallet to work one day. Um clearly that’s not, not egregious enough to to fire somebody. But if uh they’re helping themselves to the uh to the checking account and redirecting grants into their own bank account probably caused fire them

[00:10:41.92] spk_0:
even if they pay it back. Right. That really, even if they pay back with interest, that really doesn’t

[00:11:01.04] spk_1:
matter, does it? I mean, the thing about nonprofits is, you know, they’re not your own private fiefdom or your own private business, there a community, um, engagement where the reason, you know, you have a board of directors that, um, are the final legal responsibility for the organization. Um, so you really shouldn’t be operating it like your own private business.

[00:11:34.14] spk_0:
Let’s talk a little about the dashboard now nancy, the financial dashboard we introduced earlier. Um, it’s a one pager, which I think will be a relief to people is that they’re not getting a sheath of financial, uh, forms and, and, and balance sheets. But what, what, what do you think, what are key parts that should be in this financial dashboard? That to sort of streamline the overview for for board members?

[00:13:19.34] spk_1:
Um I would say that that there’s really three parts to it. There’s a financial part where you’re looking at, you know, sort of what’s our total budget? Um You know, every board member of every organization should be able to very quickly say whether the organization is a $300,000 a year organization or $5 million a year organization? That’s sort of a basic um sense of scale. Um Are we making money or not? Um Do we have net income? Um uh Do we have cash on hand? Those kinds of questions? Um Do we uh do we have a network or we, you know, if everything had to be liquidated today? Um would there be any any money left over or any value left over? Um, that that was tangible value, not just, uh, goodwill. Um, we also want to be looking at at how efficient the organization is and efficiency changes depending on what the organization does. It’s, it’s really a sense of being able to measure you against yourself or against industry standards. Um, and it’s, you know, the, the level of what it costs to deliver, um, services, for example, to severely challenged populations versus what it takes to deliver services to, um, highly educated people in, uh, an urban area where they’re all easily able to get to something. Um, the cost levels are gonna be different. And, and we’re not saying that they should be the same, but to know, um, what it costs for you to serve your clients, um, what it costs to have volunteers, um, and then the impact. And I don’t know, Andy if you want to talk a little bit about that, uh,

[00:14:00.04] spk_2:
how you measure whether you’re meeting your mission or not. And there are often new miracle measures that you can think about. You know, if you’re a land trust, how many acres are you preserving if you do mentoring with Children? How many adult Children matches do you have? I sometimes this is long term tracking, which is hard for a grassroots organizations to do. But in most fields there are ways of measuring your impact in terms of the number of clients you’re serving or the number of audience members who are involved. And hopefully there’s some measures that you can come up with that act. The quality of your work as well. Okay, So people here is, we could get this all on one page. You would have data from two years ago. You’d have data from last year, you’d have data from the current year. You could lay them out and see what the trends are. All

[00:14:22.34] spk_0:
right. That’s the financial dashboard. I love how you guys have this little dance worked out where nancy talks about the financial and efficiency parts, but then she throws it over to a co author, uh Andy for impact and you have it all worked out sort of sort of taking the show over. But it’s ok. It’s in a good way. Um which which leads me to question. All right. So I have to ask when two of when you co author a book, how do you decide whose name comes first? Did you just do alphabetical order or did you flip a coin or uh See I’m too narcissistic to co author with anybody, but but how did you guys work that out? How did you decide

[00:14:47.34] spk_1:
that? Andy Andy’s alphabetically. First on first names and last names. And um, the honest truth is is he did a lot of the writing work, um, where as I did help him with content. So it was very easy for me to go first.

[00:14:58.48] spk_0:
All right. So if I had come in, you wouldn’t have looked only at martignetti you would have also looked at Tony and then I’d have fallen maybe to the bottom, uh, which is probably where I would have had much to contribute to this. So you’re wise not to take me even though I pitched you

[00:15:13.78] spk_2:
otherwise, your name is well known in the community. We might have put your,

[00:15:18.15] spk_0:
uh, your publisher would never have approved that. Um, one of the questions

[00:15:23.80] spk_3:
that we asked before the

[00:15:46.94] spk_0:
show that relates to what we’re talking about now is, um, do you believe all your board members have at least a general understanding of your financial position and 70% said yes, 30% said no. So that’s pretty good, 70%. But the 30% they’re not really very confident a general and that was just a general understanding. Um, Okay. So the, uh, that’s the dashboard. Um, Andy should these things be devoted only to the, the authority of a, of a finance committee?

[00:16:19.64] spk_2:
No, I mean, I think a really good use of the finance committee is the oil stuff down. The rest of the board can understand it provides support to the rest of the board, serve as mentors and back up for the people on staff who were doing this. This book is not about how staff members need to do financial management more effectively. But the reality is a lot of people who are executive directors or even finance directors need help and one of the goals of Finance Committee is to give them that help when they need it. So a way to think about this is so excuse me, if the board is operating at a high altitude and the staff is down on the ground, flashing through the weed, the finance committee is sort of in the middle there providing a bridge between those two groups of people and

[00:16:51.53] spk_0:
so that means that financial dashboard is for the whole board to review. Right?

[00:16:55.99] spk_2:
Yes. How absolutely

[00:17:10.44] spk_0:
was that? A heck yes. Is that you can say hell yes. Okay, Yes. Okay. We have another question on from twitter, um, reminding listeners, you can join the conversation on twitter using hashtag non profit radio board members need to look at the impact of the organization and I guess this is for you, since you talked about impact. How do you measure if you’re meeting your mission or not? I guess she’s looking for a little more detail.

[00:17:22.20] spk_2:
Okay. Well

[00:17:24.42] spk_0:
obviously depends what your mission

[00:18:14.04] spk_2:
is. There are some standard benchmarks for how you’re doing. If you work with substance abuse, there are networks that do that, that can talk about ways of tracking your impact. For example, how many people come through a program get clean and stay clean if you are a food bank and you’re delivering food to the community. There’s a number of metrics there that come out of America. America’s harvest. I forget the name of the national network, but they’ll tell you how much money you should be spending more or less based on the population that you’re serving and how much he pounds of food you can put out into the community. Pretty much every nonprofit upset has some metrics that are relevant. And the trick is to learn the ones that are relevant type of organizations who, and then try and adapt them to your particular needs.

[00:18:18.52] spk_0:
And that would be important for the executive director to be recognizing certainly. And then right. And then conveying that to the board.

[00:18:25.04] spk_2:
Yes. And in some cases, depending on the size of the organization, there is some board work to help find those numbers. I mean, I work a lot with really small organizations who has, his staff are overwhelmed and would be great to say to a finance committee on a volunteer basis. I’m trying to figure out what the relevant metrics are for part type of organization who would be willing to do some research and bring that back to us aboard. But in a larger organization. Yeah, that’s going to fall the staff.

[00:19:01.64] spk_0:
One of the other questions we asked pre show, does your board have a committee devoted to financial issues? About 80% said yes and the remainder roughly 20% said No. Um, Nancy, does there, does there have to be a finance committee?

[00:19:48.74] spk_1:
Um, there does not have to be a finance committee. I think it really depends on the size of the organization. Um, the level of support that the director might need. You know, how complex the organization is and uh, also how savvy uh, the board is. If most of the board understands financials and feels quite comfortable with it in a small organization, um, you could get away without a finance committee. I’d say you want one in any organization that’s about to undertake any kind of major financial growth or change or, um, uh, new initiative um, in a larger organization. Um, it just is a great way to assist, um, either the finance manager or the executive director and developing budgets and exercising oversight because things don’t happen is exactly as people plan them to

[00:20:17.64] spk_0:
with me today are Andy Robinson and Nancy Wasserman co authors of the board members easier than you think guide to nonprofit finances. Um, let’s, let’s talk some about diversifying income sources uh, nancy, you make a point of having that in a couple of chapters of the book. Um why is that important first?

[00:20:30.64] spk_1:
You never want to be totally reliant on just one funder. Um You don’t want to be in a situation where um, if that one funder suddenly says, we don’t like what you’re doing, um that you’re suddenly scrambling and having to find uh, other ways to support your activities and your programs and what you do for the, for folks in the community.

[00:21:01.74] spk_0:
I think we’ve seen a lot of that in, in our recession, uh, agencies that rely exclusively or too heavily on, say, government fees for services or maybe even government agency grants or, and, or foundation grants, uh, those of all sources that have been cut

[00:21:44.34] spk_1:
back. Indeed, that’s true. And that’s part of what, um, it’s both diversifying types of financial support, but also, um, the number of supporters within each type, so you’re not totally reliant on just one foundation or one charitable donor, um, and, uh, and that you have that diversity of donors and foundations and government and, uh, your own revenues, If there’s a way for you to do that.

[00:22:06.74] spk_0:
We have a comment again from twitter. Um, just gonna point out to, uh, the person who wrote that, john that we did talk earlier about individual personal liability for non profits. You may have missed that part of the show, but you can always catch it on the archive on ITunes and our itunes pages. non profit radio dot net. Um Then

[00:22:08.54] spk_3:
what are

[00:22:09.81] spk_0:
Andy some of the sources of income that a nonprofit might look to that they’re not currently exploiting.

[00:23:09.44] spk_2:
There’s three big buckets here. tony The first book, It is private giving. Private giving is foundations, corporations, individuals and of course people leave behind when they pass away the big category there as individuals and within private giving about 80% of the money. Year after year comes from people and most of the groups that I work with don’t invest enough time and energy raising money from individual donors. So that’s the first category. Second category is public funding, that’s government funding from earl state, local, regional, municipal, all the government levels. And as you already indicated, this is a shrinking resource right now. And the groups that I think are getting hammered the worst during the recession or the that are relying on government. The third bucket is earned income, which is non profits arching for the services they provide are in some cases selling goods community and of the three, that’s the biggest of all this is sort of the surprise for people is that earned income is about the same amount as private and public funding put together when you look at all the nonprofit across the country.

[00:23:24.14] spk_0:
That’s interesting. Yeah. You don’t generally see that in in fundraising reports like giving us a earned income is not part of their

[00:23:29.40] spk_2:
private philanthropy. They’re very clear the numbers a little skewed because if you’re a private college and you’re charging tuition that shows up as earned income if you’re a private hospital and you’re charging a nonprofit hospital, you’re charging for medical services that shows up as earned income. So those numbers really sort of skew the data. But I work with a number of organizations where I’m always pushing them to say, is there something you do that you can package up and sell you have some skill that people would buy from you?

[00:23:59.24] spk_0:
It’s time for a break.

[00:24:57.64] spk_3:
Turn to communications, where would you like to be heard? News outlets, conferences, podcasts, blogs, that’s all earned media and turn to, can help you get it. They’ve got the relationships. What about your media that’s owned media turn to, can help you improve that as well because your story is their mission turn hyphen two dot c o. It’s time for Tony Take two planned giving accelerator is the online membership community that I have created to teach you how to launch your planned giving program. I’ll teach you step by step through trainings, live trainings, resources, podcasts, Ask me anything sessions. All of those are each month and we will get your plan giving

[00:25:00.08] spk_0:
program launched

[00:26:01.64] spk_3:
members of the first class, the one that started in january. Some of them already had gifts by three months in by March, so that three months into a 12-month class gift commitments already coming. So that can happen for you to you can be getting gift commitments in the first three months. The next class starts July one. I have priced this very reasonably, Especially when you consider, well, first of all, it’s just reasonable. But then when you consider that the average charitable bequest is $35,000. Take a look, it’s all at planned giving accelerator dot com And that is Tony’s take two. Yeah, we have boo koo but loads more time for B. F. D. Board financials dilemma. Mhm. Mhm.

[00:26:05.74] spk_0:
Andy Robinson and Nancy Wasserman with me. We’re talking about BFG board financial dilemma. Andy earned income. What can a charity possibly do? What you should be looking at to try to make some money off their activities their work?

[00:26:24.94] spk_2:
Well, the question I always ask groups that are wondering about this is what do you have, what do you do or what do you know somebody else ought to have or do or no most non profit during the service business. We deliver services. Sometimes we have expertise in that area and you know I mean there’s a structured brainstorm that people can do around this. A lot of what we do in the nonprofit world is pivot away and the really entrepreneurial organizations look at what they’re giving away and they say paying market for this and you know we can we can spend the rest of the show talking about this. I don’t know if you want to, but there’s a lot of opportunities there and I see many, many organizations could be more self sufficient financially if they got at figuring out what they know and how to package it up.

[00:27:18.01] spk_0:
Is there an example you can share with us a charity that didn’t realize what they had and and then ended up being able to exploit it and make some money from it?

[00:28:14.04] spk_2:
Well, I’m an author of a book on this subject called selling social change and what’s my favorite example of this? Um, you know, I’m for a group for years in Tucson Arizona called Native Search. Their seed banks on native american crops and you know what they do is protect beats from going extinct by planting them and growing them and distributing them and probably 30% of their of their income. It’s details, their seed bank and they sell it. What they recently started doing, which was fascinating is they opened something they called the school and these are people who want to learn about how to protect seeds, grow them, pass them on to the next generation’s really about biological and genetic. Pay money and they come to Arizona for a week and they get trained and everything you need to know to run your own seed bank. And it’s an organization that was sitting on this for probably 30 years, only recently realized that people would pay for that knowledge in a classroom setting. They

[00:28:29.49] spk_0:
have been doing that all for

[00:28:30.41] spk_2:
free. They hadn’t been training other people, they’ve been taking care of the seeds, but they hadn’t been teaching. I see, okay. And they realized there are a whole renaissance of local agriculture in our country right now and they thought we could tap into this. There’s a market here for people who want to learn how to do this. And so they started doing this and they’re doing this four or five times a year and it sells out and they’re starting to move it around to other parts of the country. So that’s one example.

[00:28:54.90] spk_0:
That’s an example of knowledge. They had a knowledge and a skill that was very marketable.

[00:29:12.54] spk_2:
That’s right. And until you have what you need for better worse is you need someone in the organization who has an entrepreneurial jean who can look around and say, you know what, somebody’s going to want to buy this. And not every nonprofit is blessed with people who think that way. And I think part of what nancy and I are trying to do in our professionalized is to get more of that thinking out into the nonprofit community way

[00:30:07.24] spk_0:
and the related to uh diversifying income. I I had a comment from linked in this, uh, woman had just had a board meeting this earlier this week regarding the need for transparency and distribution of responsibility. When it comes to the finances, bookkeeping and reporting function of their historic nonprofit theater, they’ve been doing their thing. Uh, they’ve been doing things their way a long time. And one big problem is that they have a banker on the board and he doesn’t see the problems. Um, uh, so it sounds like, and and then she says, I was able to get the check writing privileges moved to another person. This is sort of segue into a conflict of interest conversation, but sounds like maybe he was the only one writing checks. Um, I secured a nice grant from a foundation and they want a financial audit. I’m moving for a review. However fear we won’t get any more money once it’s known how ignorant the board is about accountability uh nancy. Uh And he’s laughing nancy. Let’s bring you back. What would you what would you say there?

[00:31:44.94] spk_1:
Well you know how are we defining accountability here? Is there a lack of what a financial audit might uncover? Um Is impropriety? But it sounds like that’s not the case. Um More likely it’s going to um It’s not the financial audit per se but the form 9 90 that you file with the I. R. S. Which ask you now to tell us, does does the boards look at financials um How does is the board of informed, has the board seen an audit? Um uh Did they review it and approve? Um It’s really um you know there there’s sort of two sets of questions. The very pragmatic, did did you get an audit? Did you review it? Did you look at it? Um And then the more important question in my mind, which I think is the question we’re trying to answer with the whole book, which is, does the board really understand what all these numbers are telling them? And ideally with with a financial audit and accountant has come in and um, spoken directly with the board of directors and walked through each and every page of it and talked about why the financials are the way they are and what they mean. Um And I think both Andy and I have seen numbers of organizations where um there’s a lot of people sitting around the table and they leave it to the banker, um or the investment professional to, you know, they they know about numbers and they handle it and it’s really something that everybody needs to know how to do. Um, if only to make sure that the mission of the organization is uh, fully addressed by the board and the organization.

[00:32:28.44] spk_0:
This also relates to the conversation about diversifying income. I mean, here this woman, uh, I believe she’s a fundraiser, there, a volunteer fundraiser and uh, trying to diversify income source, getting a grant but fearful that the grant may not be renewed because there isn’t transparency and accountability that the, the the grant source will probably be seeking.

[00:32:45.74] spk_2:
And this is another point that was raised, sort of came out of sideways. Is this question about separation of duties, which is, you know, in a healthy organization, people break up that work. One person opens the envelope and somebody else writes the checks and somebody else approves them and somebody else gets the bank statement and balances the checkbook. And the idea here is that you’re trying to avoid mischief and fraud and if somebody says, oh I’ll take care of all of these things, maybe they have good intentions and they’re going to be perfectly honest about it. But you really need to break that into separate pieces so people can have oversight over each other.

[00:33:15.64] spk_0:
Let’s segue into the conflict of interest, um, Andy defined for us. What a conflict of interest is here. It’s so often,

[00:33:58.74] spk_2:
Well, my sense of it, at least in terms of the context we’re having here, is that if you serve on a nonprofit board, your job is to put the needs of the organization above your own personal needs. And where this plays out sometimes is people who try and receive a benefit from serving on a board. That the personal benefit that has nothing to do with advancing the mission of the organization. Where this gets tricky is that in a lot of voluntary organizations, there are inherent conflicts of interest. But if you goes to a private school and you’re on the board, your job is to advocate for policies that are going to benefit the Children in the school, and in some case that means they’re going to benefit your kid individually and sort of sorting those things out can be challenging. But the bottom line is the decisions you make have to put the needs of the organization in front of your own personal need

[00:34:19.83] spk_0:
nancy. How can we try to avoid conflicts of

[00:35:47.04] spk_1:
interest? One of the best ways is to have a written conflict of interest policy where you’ve already addressed some of the situations that are likely to happen before they happen, um, where you sit there and say, you know, define what it is that is seen as either a real conflict of interest or perceived conflict of interest, which might be a case where um, somebody was, for example, can somebody bid somebody who serves on the board of directors bid on a project while they’re still on the board of directors or not? Or do they have to resign before they even submit a bid? Or do they only resign if they’re awarded the bid, or do they have to resign? Or can they simply step out of the room for the discussion? Um Those are the kinds of questions that got kind of uh can get kind of challenging, um, particularly when any member of the board stands to benefit financially, um, from any decision of the board. Um That’s uh an outright in my mind and outright conflict of interest. Um, and, um, in most boards, you want to make sure that person doesn’t participate. And it’s, it’s always easier to have that discussion, um, when there isn’t a hot potato sitting in the room, that’s, um, somebody’s thinking that they have every right to be part of the discussion. Um, and you have to therefore bring up both the fact that somebody in the room is feeling uncomfortable that this person is present. Um, and, um, it gets a little bit more tense in those sorts of situations. Prevention is having a written policy that folks have already talked through and everybody feels responsible for making sure it’s enforced.

[00:36:11.93] spk_0:
So prevention ahead of time much better than dealing with it when it’s a, a crisis or a potential crisis.

[00:36:13.83] spk_1:
Right? And, you know, it also, um, is the transparency issue you want to make sure that your presentation to the community at large is um, is as an accountable organization, um, that that gives everybody um equal opportunity to benefit from um, the organization’s purchases.

[00:36:34.49] spk_0:
Is this the kind of policy that a board member should sign and review every year or something

[00:37:00.13] spk_1:
like that? It’s not a bad idea. Oh, you know, it depends on the nature of the organization. I you know, I’ve worked with a community loan fund and that’s absolutely required that you disclose um your conflicts of interest each and every year and that you review the conflict of interest policy every year. Um The other thing that’s incredibly important is disclosed, disclosed, disclosed.

[00:37:05.21] spk_0:
We have just a minute before a break and anything you want to add to conflict of interest discussion.

[00:37:11.17] spk_2:
I think the main thing is that if you see it, you have to name it after. If your board member and you smell something like this, you have to have the courage to bring it up. And as nancy said, it’s much easier to do this if there is an existing policy in place first,

[00:37:23.56] spk_0:
if somebody sees something like this Andy again, just a few seconds before a break, who should they bring it up to you? I’m a board member. Who do I talk to?

[00:37:39.83] spk_2:
Probably go to the chair first and say, I think there’s something fishy here, let’s talk about it and I would start there and then presumably the board, the chair will bring it to the full board. Mhm. Mhm

[00:37:50.53] spk_0:
Welcome back to big non profit ideas for the other 95% on Tony-Martignetti non profit radio nancy, let’s talk a little about financial statements. What

[00:37:53.91] spk_3:
what uh what are the basics

[00:37:55.71] spk_0:
first, what’s the

[00:38:11.62] spk_1:
overview? Um there’s really two major statements that everybody um has to deliver ones the balance sheet, which is a snapshot on any given day. Um Typically the end of the month or the end of the quarter the end of the year, um Which outlines um what the organization owns and what they owe and what they’re worth, which is the difference between everything they own. Um less everything they owe um As far as its paper value is what they would be worth on that day. Uh The other major statement is the statement of activities, also called the profit and loss or A. P. And L. Um Which is where do you get all your money, your income, your revenues from. Um And then what does it go to pay for all your expenses? And the bottom line there is your net income at the end of and of a certain time period. Uh The statement of activities is more like a movie. It covers a period of time. Uh Typically uh the beginning of the year to the end of the most previous sorry the most recent months. Um So if we were on a board uh today we probably wouldn’t see the the statement of activities through the end of february because somebody would have had to have it all cleaned up as of yesterday, but we could expect to see something through the end of january. Um And depending on what your fiscal year was um would determine the beginning period.

[00:39:45.42] spk_0:
We talked earlier about full disclosure. So I’m gonna make a disclosure. The only accounting course that I’ve ever taken I dropped out of because I was I was I was going to fail. So um so I’m perfect for this book. This it’s very informative and it is an easy read and it is helpful guide um nancy help me understand this was always seem like magic to me on a balance sheet. How is it that the assets equal to the liabilities? How does that always come out? So equal? I mean uh it’s intended that way obviously, how does that

[00:40:01.35] spk_1:
possible? It seems like um now you’re asking somebody who was not trained as a classically trained accountants,

[00:40:07.75] spk_0:
you can’t pull back. Now your name is on the book, your name is there, I’m looking right at it says nancy Wasserman,

[00:40:12.49] spk_1:
but it’s um it’s based on double entry bookkeeping which was developed by the chinese and it’s uh follows up from the abacus and um really was sort of uh uh amplified by the Italians in the renaissance essentially when you put an entry in double entry book, keeping everything that goes up, something has to go down and uh it all balances out in the end and the cash comes out. And if your balance sheet that’s like number one, if the balance sheet, if the total assets does not equal the total liabilities and equity, um it is an incorrectly prepared balance sheet and they call it a balance sheet.

[00:40:51.96] spk_0:
Right? Yes, exactly, I love that my italian forebears had something to do with confusing me now in the current day. Um Okay, what how can we help uh Board members nancy, who whose eyes kind of glaze over when they get to the balance sheet, Aside from looking to see whether the two uh the assets and liabilities equal, which they always

[00:42:08.60] spk_1:
do right. Step number one, the balance. Um Number two, um Do your total current assets, in other words, what what can be cash within a year’s time, um exceed your current liabilities? The things you have to pay off with cash in a year’s time. And so are you liquid or not? Do you have, do you have cash available to do things? Um This is the place where you’re looking for those payroll liabilities or payroll tax liabilities. If there’s a number there that’s frighteningly large, um you’ve got a big problem and if it’s payroll tax liabilities, um you as a board member may be personally liable. Um What are your long term liabilities look like? Is that that’s your debt basically. And you know, does it make sense to you? Is that number reflects the debt? You know the organization has um your net net assets. Now, you know the language of accounting is kind of like greek and um I sometimes think they made up all these names to make it even more confusing.

[00:42:17.36] spk_0:
It would be so much easier if it was, it was italian,

[00:42:19.74] spk_1:
it could be,

[00:42:21.37] spk_0:
it would be, it would, there’s lots of cognitive and it’s a romance language. I think it would be, I’m sorry.

[00:42:56.20] spk_1:
No problem. But that total net assets number, which simply means, you know what this organization more. Um, if it, if it had to liquidate today and um, if that’s a negative number, you should be concerned. Um, and, and there’s certainly many organizations where that is the case. Um, so those are the big things on the balance sheet. You know, does it, does, it sort of makes sense to you to the fixed assets and their value. Um, feel like what you have if you suddenly see something that shows that you have a fixed asset of, you know, equipment worth $100,000 and you’re scratching your head because you have no idea what you have for equipment. Um, Something’s wrong with the balance

[00:43:10.68] spk_0:
and you should and should ask that question. Absolutely. You mentioned earlier frighteningly large numbers, I mean, is part of what we should be doing, looking for anomalies.

[00:44:01.79] spk_1:
Um That’s really what you’re looking. You’re looking for things that, you know, that don’t make sense or don’t feel right or that you can’t um if you can’t, if it doesn’t feel right and you can’t really explain it, you want to ask questions. Um, and, and the numbers, you know, the thing about numbers is um, they’re pretty um, they’re very, you know, they’re either on or off and um, it’s harder to lie with numbers. Um, so you’re gonna know right away that you could have frighteningly large numbers with a, with a complex organization and that would be fine. Um, if if they’re they’re balanced out, if there’s cash in the bank, if it feels like there’s equity.

[00:44:37.09] spk_0:
Mm This is a critical subject. Another question that I asked on the, on the pre pre show survey is for those charities that do have a board committee devoted to financial issues. Are you confident that each committee member is fluent in your numbers and understand your financial position? Only 25% said yes. The remaining 75% were either no or not sure and no was pretty large. About 60%. We have to stop there. Andy Robinson and Nancy Wasserman are co authors of the board members easier than you think. Guide to nonprofit finances published by Emerson and Church Andy Nancy. Thank you very much for being guests.

[00:44:50.52] spk_1:
Thank you Tony.

[00:44:56.59] spk_0:
Thanks for having us. It’s been a real pleasure. And also thanks to your publisher, Kathleen Brennan at Emerson in church for her promotion assistance for the show.

[00:45:35.69] spk_3:
That was fun. A bit of nostalgia. I had to keep in a short burst of eye of the tiger had had to do that. Thank you for ramping back in time with me Next week. Our 2021 nonprofit technology conference coverage continues. Oh, conference coverage continues. I like that. If you missed any part of this week’s show, I beseech you find it at tony-martignetti dot com. We’re sponsored by Turn to communications pr and content for nonprofits. Your story is their mission turn hyphen two dot c o.

[00:45:49.59] spk_5:
Our creative producer is Clan Meyerhoff shows, social media is by Susan Chavez. Mark Silverman is our web guy and this music is by scott Stein. Mhm Right, thank you for that. Affirmation scotty be with me next week for nonprofit radio Big non profit ideas for the

[00:45:56.39] spk_3:
Other 95

[00:45:58.99] spk_5:
go out and be great.

Nonprofit Radio for December 22, 2017: Recruiting Your Next CEO

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Dennis Miller: Recruiting Your Next CEO

“As a board member of a nonprofit organization, the most important responsibility you are likely to assume will be to hire your chief executive officer.” So starts the book, “A Guide To Recruiting Your Next CEO.” Whether you’re on a board or work with one, you need to know what’s what for this critical duty. Author Dennis Miller walks us through.

 

 


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Hello and welcome to tony martignetti non-profit radio big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent. I’m your aptly named host. Oh, i’m glad you’re with me. I’d get slapped with a diagnosis of cattle lep c if you tried to hypnotize me into the idea that you missed today’s show recruiting your next ceo as a board member of a nonprofit organization, the most important responsibility you are likely to assume will be the hyre your chief executive officer. So starts the book a guide to recruiting your next ceo, whether you’re on a board or work with one, you need to know what’s what for this critical board duty author dennis miller returns to walk us through on twenty state too next month’s non-profit radio we’re sponsored by pursuant full service fund-raising data driven and technology enabled tony dahna slash pursuant and by wagner. Sepa is guiding you beyond the numbers wittner, cpas, dot com you’re not a business you’re non-profit appaloosa accounting software designed for non-profits non-profit wizard dot com tell us turning payment processing into your passive revenue stream tony dot m a slash tony tell us i’m glad that i can welcome dennis miller back then a c miller he’s, a strategic leadership coach and executive search consultant with more than thirty five years experience working with non-profit board leadership and chief executives across the country. He’s, managing director of the non-profit search group, an executive recruiting firm. His latest book, his fifth, is a guide to recruiting your next ceo. The executive search handbook for non-profit boards you’ll find dennis and his book at dennis c miller dot com he’s at dennis c miller and i’m very glad that his book brings him back to non-profit radio. Welcome back, dennis c miller happy to be back, tony way happy well happened years coming up. Yes, stopping here. That’s appropriate. I’m sorry. Thank you. And to you what does the sea foreign dennis, c miller, dot com and charles that’s my father’s name. So, so many dennis mellows and grammar school in high school, we put my seeing and i’m very proud to be a similar dennis charles. All right, you don’t mind if i don’t call you tennessee miller the whole hour, though, i just call me yet that it’s anything you’re like. Okay, now. Dennis overviewing i just have to be it has to be anymore denigrating the dentist, then it’s fine, now you’re by phone, you’re in, you’re in los angeles, is that right? Yeah, i’m actually in the los angeles area of isn’t that it’s a business appear this week and now we’re spending time. My wife and i went our two sons on their families and grandson out here and los angeles and heading up to santa monica santa monica pier, right after the show. So good. All right, well, we won’t hold you up. In fact, if you want take off now, we can just back the whole thing. Did you do you need to go public transportation is going to leave in five minutes or something or you’re okay. You’re okay for the hour. Okay. Now remember the last time you were here? You almost had a heart attack. You were running down the street. You were late. Your your, um your cheeks were rosy. Your heavy breathing. You needed a few minutes to take deep breaths. So now you’ve after to go to los angeles. And this way you can call him by phone. Well, okay, you don’t. Worry about running running to the studio. Okay, okay. You didn’t have a heart attack. You know what i was saying? I really have no salmon. Naralo were had a regular. You may have. No, you did. You had a high. You’re definitely out of my heart because your face was red. All right, why do we need this book? Why are you causing trouble with this tome? Well, think about it that there’s probably over a million more more than a million non-profits around the country and with the number of people that are just paid to retire over the next five plus years on any research, uh, just staggering sometimes close a seventy five percent. The ah the vast majority of people went into the non public sector and leadership positions where baby boomers from the sixties and seventies went to sort of the cultural change and wanted to commit themselves to having a big impact in the communion. So there’s, a lot of retirement going on, and the the biggest responsibility that a member of the board can have is selecting the next ceo. And then on top of that, when you think about the challenges of the environment in the non public sector, the leadership conferences have been dramatically changing, so it’s an important time for board members to understand what is needed to recruit the next ceo that’s why i wrote the book ok, seventy five percent turnover in the next ten years we’re going to have i’m probably less i mean, it’s, it’s quite a bit, if you think about people that grew up in the sixties and seventies, where you know it’s now two thousand, you know, seventeen and people in their sixties and thinking about stepping down another part of life and a lot of recruitment gonna be needed get latto leadership so it’s going to be required for this sector. Now, one of the opening questions is whether we should go this recruitment alone or hyre a such consultant now you’re you’re biased. You say that in the book you’re biased, but, you know, can you weigh the pros and cons for us? You know, so i’m biased certainly wasn’t if someone if someone wants to go about it a lot, i think the book will help them with that for sure you want to go in alone is this year. You have people on the board or staff with the expertise and recruiting. Do you have the time commitment that’s going to be needed for the board members, too? Not only identify the profile of the next candidate, but spending the time and now is reaching out and screening candidates. So there’s a lot of work involved that lay out those except in the search committee. Klaus is here. I think that what a lot of people doing today is realizing that, you know, whatever the figures that they’re going to be paying and most trees probably in area someplace between twenty to thirty five percent are cases. Twenty five that the advertiser over five years and sometimes really not that high. And yet. So you want to have an expertise this like anything else? If he needed a lawyer of financial account, you’d be hiring someone. It’s a challenging thing to go about on your own and the other aspect, tony, uh, for people who want to go about on their own is by just posting sort of adds a social media. Whatever you going toe on ly get the people that are looking for a job. And you know no either how good they are. However performing they are. Well, if they’re happy, a search from is going to recruit people that are not looking for that job. And that’s part of what you want. What i have that those percentages thatyou quoted that’s of the first year cash compensation. Is that yes. So someone makes ah a position whether the ceo our c f o r development amglobal to say the position i was one hundred thousand dollars. You know, the average three is going to be, you know, twenty five thousand dollars. But if this day five years it’s five thousand dollars a year which comes out to be about a hundred dollars a week or twenty hours of any and, you know the thing about it’s, probably the smartest investments that aboard would want to make. Okay, noah particularly because the right person and they stay for a period of time. It it’s okay. And i guess the main advantage of going on your own is your saving that fee. Well, you saving the fee, but you also, you know, better be prepared for the time that your board is gonna have that so that you poisoned cons here, but most most really good organizations will use the search from for certain keys positions. Okay, okay. Um, let’s say we just have about a minute before ah, first break, dennis so let’s, just identify that this ceo change is not something necessarily to be feared. I mean, just in a minute or so, this could be an opportunity, a great opportunity. Well, that’s, how you look at him and i were doing a search right now when we’ve got the finalists been seen by the search committee and in beginning this is that this is the first time this organization has used a search firm. And, you know, they admitted they made some mistakes in the past. But you’ve got to go from, you know, not a crisis, too. This is a phenomenal opportunity, too. I just take it, get a new leader. But i have an assessment of your organization and have some advice and give me and people get on the board. And we’ve been here for quite a while. Or fairly new it’s a exciting time to take a first look atyou organization. So it if the glass is half full it’s i look at it is very exciting times one organization, most clients feel the same way, all right? And we’re gonna talk about that. That assessment right after this right now. Time to take a break pursuant. Proven strategies for stewardship. That is their oh so timely webinar replay for you stewardship strategies, because lots of people giving right this quarter this month how do you keep them giving year after year after year? You know how costly it is to lose donors and replace them. We know nationwide that donor attrition is around seventy five percent annually. Sad that’s ah that’s supposed to be ah, supposed to be our president tweeting sad. But if you have to tell the judge, you have to tell what it is then it doesn’t work. Ah, but but maybe it did work. I’m not there to listen to you laugh. So maybe it worked out fine, so i didn’t need to. Rachel and kathy are going to give you examples of top thank you’s. They talk about automation without sacrificing personalization. They have free templates for you to use. And if you don’t mind, i would like to throw in that the value. Of the personal touch of handwritten notes for your special donors, all proven stewardship strategies. You’ll find that webinar at tony dahna em, a slash pursuant capital p now, back to dennis miller and his book, recruiting, ah, guide to recruiting your next ceo and dennis similar so let’s, talk about that. That possibility for assessment. You, uh, you say that you might. I considered doing strategic planning. I guess if you have time before getting into the recruiting process for the next ceo. Yeah, well, the you know, the question always is, you know what comes first, right? Chicken or the egg? Tony, do your hyre our ceo or d’you hyre our chief development officer before you have a plan and and kind of it’s up it’s up to the client, the organization, but give you a couple examples, whites sort of better toe at least an idea of where you want to go and what you want to achieve. So let’s say, uh, you want it, you go out and hyre ceo hoping that day will build your plan and let some party of plan is to be more involved in philanthropy maur involved in cultivating. So seeing donors? What if that seo hee just hyre doesn’t have that experience will now you’re stuck. So what if your needs is to grow? You’re bored and you, seo yi sa doesn’t have that so one of the things that i recommend the clients is that’s not necessarily happen to have a full blown strategic plan, but certainly it’s a good idea to have a real sense of your strategic vision where you had it, where you want to head, what some of the big strategic goals you have, um, what things that you need to get done, and then obviously it’s much easier to in to identify that the characteristics on the qualities and experience of the ceo. So you bring someone on board who is the right cultural fit for your organization. So that’s, why it’s important to take a look at kind of way you want to go before you just went on board? You say that if you’re not going to do a full, full blown strategic plan planning process, you want to at least identify what your organizational goals are? Yeah, i mean, i think there are some people that, you know don’t do oppcoll bonem metoo plan, i think that you could do that, but i think more importantly, uh, what you want to do and a good search from what we do is we do sort of an assessment of where you’re at in your life, uh, cycle as an organization and as a board um, and then we interview members of your board and you’re seeing your team to get a sense of where you’re at that helped us for magically beginning the onboarding plus is what your next ceo? So we know kind of what their challenges are versus going about it blind, so i do think that you wanna have, and i point this out in the book, you want to have a sense of your strategic vision, we’re heading and pick up some of the key goals you’re having here. So when you’re interviewing kayman thatyou want, make sure they’re lined with those gold here and it makes a much smoother transition, some of the goals you you lay out besides mission envision our fund-raising and development, you know what you want do around that you’re bored ceo relationship, your programs and services and of course, you know, the book explains what goes into detail on each of those, but, um, yeah, i would have a couple of it, certainly. You know, your organizational capacity. What do you have in terms of leadership development? Do you have ah plan to develop the people you have there? What’s going on with you border. You’re building the right board. Are you branding the organization and communicating with the impact you’re having is important things today. So there’s a lot of ah, strategic goals, that one. Should be having with this process and you want to get a sort of buy-in from your board and have the new ceo committed help temple with this upleaf and okay, so this new ceo is gonna have need to have some skills on dh you make the point that you don’t want to be constrained by what the what the skills and talents of the existing ceo are. We want to be thinking beyond that, i mean, that’s that’s part of what this organizational either planning or identifying the goals is going to do is help you look forward, not current, you know, you just don’t want you don’t want to just replicate the current ceo’s talents, but you want to build on those for the future and you identify a whole bunch of, you know, potential skills that you might be looking for a visionary thinker, entrepreneurial spirit, relationship builder, etcetera. But you want to be going beyond the current? Yeah, i mean, it’s easy question when you have someone, you know, you know what kind of kind of see what you’re looking for? And then the person who has been in the job, you know, for the past ten, fifty years, your name is surely people we’d like someone like charlie. Well, maybe you do. Maybe you don’t. I think that the challenges that you previously eoe had maybe sell it, but they also be very different. And one of things that you just mentioned that i have in the book, in another books, in my work i do, tony is the idea of today’s competencies for ah, executive leadership in on public sector, dramatically different than they were five, ten years ago. There’s nothing wrong with what they were in the past. You know, aboard we’ll look for someone who was a a mission based person who could have built a good relation of in the community, probably someone who could manage people in programs and perhaps someone who could go out get a grant. Though their skills are still important today, they look for more than just skills. But competition traits such as they want a visionary thinker today, when the past the ceo or executive director would implement the board’s vision. Today, boards are looking for ceos to create their own vision cream organization. I want a visionary thinker, which takes coverage of grey. Division number two certainly. People want the idea of relationship will the building relationships outside inside the organization? Uh, someone who’s, a social entrepreneur who can help develop the resource is in partnership that you need not just managed him when you got so is the whole siri’s of conferences that identifying the book, including, you know, today being a collaborate it’s, not about how big of a budget you have in control it’s about collaboration. So, yes, there is a lot of new compass out there for ceos and executive represented, but i use the term song with ceo. Exactly. Director? Yeah. That’s a fair that’s. Fair fares. Similarities. Of course. I did have a guest years ago. Eugene fram. He was a professor that i think he was a university of rochester. Andi made a case that he wanted it to be the ceo. He he felt that chief executive officer conveys a greater gravitas than executive director and ceo. That chief executive makes it less likely. Now it doesn’t make no guarantee, but less likely that board members will get involved in the nitty gritty the day to day management, you know, be be micromanaging ceo versus an executive director? I don’t. Do you have any preference for one over there? I know the book uses anonymously, but you have a preference for one. Over the other day, i d’oh you know, tony it’s a point you’re raises a really good one. And i do highly in the book of my work. But i do think today the more contemporary title is chief executive officer. Um, the more contemporary title is bored shiver support president what you kind the past is, um, it may just be words, but i think they have a lot of connotations. They do hide them so i’d like to see board chair for sport president. I think the top late personal pipe paid for sex should be the president ceo. And i think that was provoc pulawski right there when you’re out there with donorsearch oh, it’s more than just an executive director overseen the apartment. You really keep executive making things happen? I do. I do before the words ceo cubine taking andi also executive director. I mean that’s that’s sort of a uniquely non-profit terms way wanted to think that running like businesses run. This thing like a business happens. To be a nonprofit corporation. But don’t tell this to run like a business on my other interviews with you came up the term, you know, non-profit attacks that business plan, i think it’s important that today’s title be ceo. I just really think that important title they have let’s get into some nitty gritty. I want to start with the the search committee who belongs on this thing. Well, clearly, i think the this you know that in terms of size of dominant members of the search committee should be members of the board. Now, can you have a non board member on such absolute who might that be? Well, if you have someone on your community that you know has experienced with search maybe a human resource background and then on your board, you want to get their advice and gets a good that’s a good conclusion. But generally speaking, if you have a board say of, you know, twelve to fifteen people, you may one of the search committee of maybe five, you know, maybe seven maximum, but i’ve seen larger or smaller. Um, so sizes of the committee is important. Number two, uh, be tremendous amount. Of time commitment so the members of the search committee have to realize it’s going to be in involvement here in some time, and then obviously, the key part of that will be who will be your chair, the search committee, in some cases it’s, a chair of the board, which is completely appropriate. Other times that could be the vice chair of the future chair. Ah, a lot of people ask me all the time. Would it be ok, though? Has the form of a former board chair? A starita search for money and i would say maybe i would say maybe on ly, because if the former board chair eyes focus about what happened yesterday and not involved as much in your strategic planning for the future and not somebody think of something because they won’t know like what they’re looking for, yeah, this’s committee’s got to be a forward approaching organization, afford protect committee so i think that’s kind of that that’s something to think that i would be looking for a nose of membership. What about an employee putting one one employee on the committee? I don’t think that’s a good idea, actually, i think it’s a bad idea to come out writer bae and say not well, give example. Okay, uh, i’ve had people wondering to put, you know, uh, you know, the current ceo on the search committee, and the answer is no, that law office of the current ceo, maybe and help in the search committee and the consultant or either inside or outside of the search committee helped develop aspects of the position provoc what will be the ideal qualifications and experience of the next ceo? But the board hires and fires a ceo um it’s also very uncomfortable before a current ceo to be on the search committee. I had a case where it wasn’t my search client, but it was my client that i helped with succession planning in they had internal candidate for the position. And when the search committee, as this person, what changes would you make she’s very awkward to be talking about the change you want to make with theo? Of course, right. So i have. But now, those times when you get there, some people have their v p of hr on the search committee if they need it lays on. But remember, people it’s not a good idea. Has staff it’s not good to have senior members of the committee on the search committee. It should be his boardmember dahna okay, predominately. And then you said maybe a volunteer. I love you. He needs expertise. I mean, if you know if you’re going to not have a search committee and may sometimes people can hyre a certain person not to do the search, but just give advice. But i think you want someone on the committee that has experienced in recruitment, identifying screening candidates and all that type of thing so you can build it up with the great. Okay. Okay. Um, this search committee has to assure that applicants confidentiality is going to be maintained, right? You want a crucial because on i make it clear to all my such you could be. You could be sued for. Ah, um, you could be potentially have a lot of liability for exposing that. There is a candidate. You tell your friend, by the way. You know, tony is it’s been interviewing for me and and before you know it, tony’s, you know, employer finds out, you know, feels like this oil is the prom. So you have to protect confidentially, it’s something that i have to establish the trust of my chance coming in, derek, they’re they’re adamant, and it’s just goes with the same goes with the business, i have to keep them confidential. There’s no way can let people know they’re seeking a job. Yeah, and this goes part me, tio, some of the time commitment, you know, if if there isn’t a, uh, a search consultant helping some of these conversations that the early stage is going to be after hours, people are going to be comfortable talking between, you know, nine and six p m yeah, after the day i’ve had, you know, i mean, our business is growing tremendously, what’s what’s going on, but, you know, when people say yeah, you know, maybe i’ll do it myself, but listen, if you can, if you know it’s up to you but the time involved for not just the identifying the characteristics and compasses of what the third, if you want up with the outreach to potential candidates is very time consuming if you’re going to delegate that members of the search committee a wall so, you know, professionals are working or even retired it’s a lot of work involved in screening people, scheduling interviews, scheduling meetings, being qualified to interview people, it’s a lot of time of all the narrow and candidates down and doing the reference, checking it’s quite a bit. So there’s a lot of work that’s involved in a process, not just putting it out there and then, you know, interview case it’s quite a bit of work to both sell candidates on why they want to take a look at this opportunity that’s really important, which is when i was just going to point out that you say some things that caught my eye was very, very interesting i hadn’t heard before that the search committee has an obligation. So our role teo, be selling the applicants on the organization not just to be not just to be a neutral a neutral committee, but be advocates for the auriga yeah, i mean, the candies are going to come in, they’re gonna come in prepared and they’re there to sell themselves. And what often happens on some cases where the search committee say, jeez, i thought, you know, how come they don’t think that we’re the best? Thing since sliced bread. Well, you want to convey a sense of optimism, a sense of enthusiasm. So you need candy it’s, goingto, besides what the search consultant is going to be telling them about the organization recruiting for as a search committee, i remember that you want to be portraying avery plaza of image. You want to be sort of extending your hand, you want to be greeting them. You want to make them feel welcome and warm, even if you’re not going to be selected them. And you noted, under process, you want to believe what a very positive feeling for donorsearch that’s, a major altum search committee acid. All right, interesting let’s, move, teo, resume screening. You’ve got you’ve got a ton of tips, you’ve you’ve reviewed thousands of, but you’ve got you’ve got a lot of tips to share, share a couple of resume screen tips. Now we’re at that stage that these things were coming in. Just repeat that, tony. I’m sorry about a lot of people coming in. Resume resumes. A lot of resumes coming out sametz share share a couple of resume screening tips. Oh, couple things one of you want to look for clary right off the bat. Eyes cloudy. Is it clear as to how their name and how to get ahold of you? You don’t always have to have your home accuracy stays, but certainly a phone number and email address. I think i look for one of things that we look for on our team is more of a chronological history. I want to know kind of where where’s your career, ben and a couple of tips. You look for someone’s been, you know, in a job every one or two years, and they leave quite quickly that that’s a signal textile, red flag, red flag and it were bad thing. But it should be there. The other thing that, uh, those there some people for it is the functional resume where you get a sense of what their skills are experiences. But you never get a sense of where they performed that. So two things on a resume. Both. For people that are considering throwing their hat in the ring on applying for position or respond to a search from is clary, is the resume clear of what i’ve accomplished? Is it clear what have achieved as a clear in terms of the timetables have? And i think that’s a couple of tips on the resume that really yeah, that that gap in employment that could be a woman who took time off to raise children absolutely was a caregiver was a caregiver for pareles that was concerned about a gap, and i said, just tell me you have a phd in parenthood. I mean, i’d be proud to be apparent way we don’t have parents, we don’t, you know, keep going, so i think it’s a totally appropriate but be honest with what you don’t want to do, it’s, not the cover things up here, and so then, you know, present yourself in a positive tone, but certainly be honest, if you took a couple of years out or timeout to raise children to be proud of it, and so you did, but these skills and bring back the table and begin the work force, i think it’s implying with that, let me ask you a quick one. Does this turn you off when you see people with email addresses that are hotmail or a o l does that suggest to you that somebody is out of touch with technology? No, i don’t, you know, not any detail. Why? Because most of them have to e mails. They have their business emails and their personal emails, and so they don’t want ah search from or an organization that there may be talking to going into there. Professional at work email like, yeah, no, i get that. I’m okay with the email accounts. It’s, when i see you know, dennis at, you know, big love of dot com i have eyes that see you. I’m gonna try that one. Yeah, okay, but wait. Yeah. And then when the e mails that are unprofessional, like baby cakes, you know, but yeah, i don’t want to be the case. That field. Yeah, that’s unprofessional, but all right, i think it’s okay does to protect your you know, your private from work, i think that’s. All right, but let me ask you, but but my point was if it’s an added you know, sort of an out of date domain like jool or hotmail or yeah, who you know, does that suggest to you that somebody’s not hip with the current with technology it’s possible? I know nothing about that. If that you know, if you have an out of the email address and then your resume looks out of date and it’s not clear that’s not gonna help you. So if that is your email address on minutes at a oh, well, i mean, i’m fine with that. I’m fine with that. All right. As long as not baby cakes today. Well, all right. Way to take a break. Regular cps. I got a testimonial for you, quote. I was new at my position when i began working with wagner cpas. My confidence has grown knowing that i can rely on the professionals of wagner to answer any questions and make recommendations that will ensure the success of our non-profit. And you see, i always say they go beyond the numbers. This’s the truth. It comes out right here in the testimonials, we were given sound advice enabling us to increase investment income while at the same time protecting assets. Tony. Inserts a question. Does your audit firm do that for you? Recommending investment investment alternatives for you? I trust and respect our audit team and look forward to their annual visit end quote, how many do you look? I’m dying to know. Do you look forward? Your annual audit that’s probably more like dreading your annual audience, but somebody from this midsize religious organization in the midwest looks forward to their annual audit. You can to check out wagner, regular cpas dot com apolo software you’re non-profit but you used accounting software made for business stop wasting your time using business accounting software for your books like quickbooks turbo cash asap microsoft they’re not made for you. They don’t do fund accounting for you. They’re built for businesses apple owes accounting is designed for non-profits it’s in the dna for tired for pete’s sake it’s in a dna easy, affordable and you need thio use to check out the pricing. By the way, it is quite reasonable non-profit accounting for you, they’re at non-profit wizard dot com now time for tony steak too. Next month on non-profit radio you’re twenty eighteen planning if you want free business coaching in twenty eighteen we’ll have a guest from score he’ll be telling you all about it. You’re online giving plan for twenty eighteen joe garrick, the fund-raising authority will be with me. Where’s, the new tax law mean for your overall twenty eighteen fund-raising plan. Jean takagi is going to parse it out for us. How about in twenty eighteen? You get free software and consulting from oracle net suite. The vp of their social impact team will be on plus maria and reassemble course. You know her aimee semple board. You know her with their twenty eighteen plans. It’s all in january. Or you need to do is listen. And that lovely is listener is tony steak too? And doesn’t that sound like live listener? Love is coming up. Indeed. You were right would reach new jersey. Woodbridge, i want you to identify yourself. I demand it. Otherwise you have to stop listening. I want to know who this season. Woodbridge, new jersey. So loyal! Identify yourself! Use the hashtag non-profit radio on twitter, email me tonia tonia martignetti dot com i wanna know who you are. Tampa, florida, new york, new york multiple thank you for that live listeners love to all these places port murray in new jersey honolulu, hawaii killing worth connecticut live. Listen, love going out there, the honolulu i don’t think we’ve had certainly not recently, i don’t know if you’ve had a little before live love going out there all those places. How about in china, guangzhou, lee, how and other in china that we cannot see? That’s interesting. Guangzhou we can see other cities we cannot see. But now to everyone in china, united kingdom, of course live lesser love to you tokyo tokyo was with us. Konichiwa, germany is with us. Guten tag germany on germany mast and also castle kassell, germany, putin dog to everyone in germany listening and also in japan toko ri zala, konnichi wa to took a result. How about those podcast pleasantries over twelve thousand of you, the vast majority of our audience that’s where you’re listening and pleasantries go to you. Thank you, podcast listeners for being with us and i am and fm affiliate listeners throughout the stations throughout the station’s well throughout the stations throughout the world yeah, throughout the country anyway. Throughout the stations throughout the country affections, affiliate affections to our am and fm listeners in those stations throughout the states throughout the country, affections to you. Dennis miller’s with us, you know him, we’re talking about his book, a guide to recruiting your next ceo, you know, we can we can cover the whole book, so just get the thing we’re going to say, you know, it’s, a dentist, see miller dot com that’s where you’ll find dennis in this book just get the damn thing, it’s just that i don’t know how to make it any plainer. All right. Anyway, denis let’s, continue our our joint through, um okay, so we’ve got a bunch of resumes and the book goes through lots of lots of resume screening tips. I mean, when they really don’t have time to go through all the tips, but there’s a lot there. Now we’re into interviewing. So you say there are two things we’re looking for? They were looking for the interpersonal and skills ability? Absolutely. I mean, the tv process. Once we screen people in terms of resume on paper, we certainly begin actually with phone interviews and then once leaves, go to the phone into the process and we can get a better sense of with they are as a potential candidate, we may explain a final car. Weather at one of salary package so without wasting people’s time here. But there are a couple two things you’re looking for. Um, do they have a cultural? Do they have interpersonal skills that will build your team on the team builders over there? You know, ah, they collaborators of the communicators and then obviously did they have the ability to deliver positive results? And i think those two things is what kind of, you know, separates the people who get to positions and those that don’t hear i we advised certainly the search committee on, you know, the question should be focused on limited tony to, you know, their person’s behavior, their skills, their experience, what they bring to the table, not things that deal, what things like, you know, age and discrimination and gender and all those kind of things that you want to avoid. But the bottom line is who can communicate their ability to get along with people because it’s a team game antionette glamarys also there too, things that are a crucial now one of things that you may ask me, i’ll just what answer ahead of time we have and your listeners can get their contact and get onto our newsletter. But we at non-profit search dot com. We provide a candidate matrix that has sort of a scoring sheet with certain questions on it. Ah, what a total score fifty. And whether it’s on leadership, communications, street, strategic planning, board, relationships, etcetera. So when people of actually going to the interview process on the search committee and you’ve got forty eight people, suppose, you know, going in the search committee members can evaluate for people. And i have this matrix a kind of sense of where, you know, people come out scores and usually it’s a good tool that have for them. You have a lot of resources at the non-profits search dot com. So you mentioned throughout the book, but that’s scoring matrix is one of them. All right, so let’s, get into some details here. Now is the whole committee meeting with every every candidate. Because if it’s subsets of a committee meeting with different candidates, then i don’t think that doesn’t seem fair to me because different subsets or going to judge people differently. Yeah, well, here’s what we do, um and, um the answer is that the entire search committee needs prepared to interview all the candidates now in a case we just have here. Because it’s got multiple locations. There are actually eight people on, uh, a search committee and four will meet in one location and four met another location. Actually, each candidate each of the five final candidates you met which weiss but they but they are all seeing yet you cannot have one group meets somebody. Candidates and another good meet the only other candy that’s part of the process with a search committee. He’s gonna be on the committee. You have to have the type of zoho so every every candidate should be seen by every person on the search committee. Absolutely. You you advocate. I mean, this is sort of a no brainer, but just make it explicit. You know, you don’t want to be asking. Yes, no questions. You are open ended questions. Yeah. You you don’t want to say, you know, you want to you want to engage him in conversation and they want to get you in a conversation two and so, you know, asking questions. What was the most challenging thing you had a deal with in your current? Position on your most recent position. What was the you know, your biggest achievement? Hey, is an issue for us. How would you deal with it? You stay away from the yes and no questions. And we have, you know, we’ve identified on a website and our resources and our book here, you know, question to be asking, but yeah, not open it. Not not. Yes or no. Open ended questions. Engagement of conversation is the best of them. Okay, let’s say, we’ve everybody has interviewed all the candidates. Uh, now what’s, our next step in the committee. Well, what you want to do is the one i have everybody’s gonna score the candidates and give feedback on the candidates and have the board chair or someone assigned to oversee the accumulation of all the scoring. So you can see how people did. And then what you want to do is and what we do is i have a conversation with this chair of the search committee. And then, uh, i will meet with the search committee. One of my senior member of the team will meet with the search committee depending where the searches on what it’s for and then we they may determine that. Listen, there’s one final candidates is one person they like, and they want to bring him back to meet with people in the organization. Take him on a tour or there’s. Two final plans. They’re not sure. So that there’s a process here. The process here is obviously too, uh, what? The other candidates know that they did well and they thank him before participating. But there’s someone at this point in time that has a skill centre experience. That’s mohr meets the needs of my client. Ah, we hope to see him again the future and then focus in on, you know, having to help them make a final decision on the candidate before we get involved and advise him on making, making a final offered and employment contract employment agreement right now in this scoring, obviously somewhere going to score highest and high esten hyre than others. But suppose there’s just there’s just a sense that, you know, even the highest scoring one or two, they’re just they’re just not right. It was just, you know, like i said, every in a group of five somebody’s going to score the highest but but even that highest one, they just don’t feel right. You know, how do we we feel like we may have to go back to the go back to the recruitment process. Well, have expressed happened. You know, only once in my recent experience, where in most cases, uh, in addition, the scoring members of the search committee and, you know, as you know, the millions and millions of people that serve our non-profit board throughout this country and in other countries and canada, you know, our bright, committed people they gotta see if you get a feel for you know who you think would fit in here. So usually, you know, the scores will help you because it gives us feedback. But usually you get a kind of a feeling you would be the best person for that. If there’s a situation, um, that, you know, the search committee sees the final candidates. And if it happens that you feel like there’s, you know, just not feeling it for those candidates. I absolutely would highly recommend that he go back and do the search again. We have a situation with a very prominent national foundation. Uh, we started with believing out of pool of eighteen candidates, uh, middle down, teo wither down to eleven that was down to five and five people came in, and so with the entire team and that team in there of identified, you know, to people and long behold some discussion and some some time issues and then people not sure what decision to make and there was some inexperience on the team making the decision and they kind of planted and they just, uh, well, i’m not sure i’m ready to pull the trigger, so we were disappointed for the work we did. We will back out into the search again, and usually you don’t get the great candidates again, and we did, and it worked out so it’s for some reason, you don’t feel it. I dont just say, well, because is a high score because you’re going to live with this person quarter what use with this not happen, tony, you, um you know, the search is doing the work, you’ll get the right candidate, but if a some reasons you feel that, you know, this is i just don’t feel it for this person is going to fit in here. Then don’t just pick someone because of scored the scores are one of the many tools will you offer to help you pick your candidate? Is this a stage where we should be calling references now? We’ve we’ve narrowed it down to our top two or so, yeah, so what way? Well, a cz we get the final can’t wait do ask for a reference, but here’s, what we do, we don’t ask them, they could tell us who they’re going to use the reference we are specific and ask him for the type of reference we’re looking for example, and a ceo case we know they can’t talk about the company, we’d like the house, then talk. We’d like to talk to someone who is a boardmember maybe a boardmember another organization would like to talk to someone that appear that they have done a lot of work with. We would like to talk to someone that has worked for them, so, uh, we don’t always talkto the references i had a time, because if you’ve got, you know, four final candidates we spent about our time it’s that wee if you’re not going to be chosen, why go? Through the house full of asking people speaking the reference. But with your various final candidate, we actually do a thorough construct. And i have a little bit of a funny story that that you listen, um, you may enjoy just quickly here, and it goes back a long time ago when i did my first search believing not thirty years ago. And i was recruiting someone to head up a healthcare foundation and came down to two people. And there was a man, a woman. And i remember the, uh the man had sort of mohr experience, but the young woman has seemed like much more potential. Anyway, for some reason, the man had given me a list of ten references. Don’t ask me why, but he gave me ten references, and i call it the first six references. Iss man kind of walked on water. He was, you know, could have been their spiritual guru by the time i got seven. Eight. I really got a sense that people were not that comfortable. Then by the time i got the nine and ten people were asking me, you know, why did you what did this guy even you? Give me a reference, i recommend anything, so the moral stories you want to keep, you know, kind of dig in here and it’s, certainly you have a right as a as an organization, and you have a right as a search committee to, you know, find out what you know about people, which is what we do, um, and same time protecting confidential alley, but certainly, you know, we need to do with our research on them and in addition to references, we obviously do a check on educational credentials, and then we advise our clients baseball what state they’re in about what they can do and not teo regarding they want pursue, uh, feeling criminal background check will and credit credit risk of credit reports. It sounds like that guy on his word document that he gave you with the list of what was thirty years ago. We didn’t have work, but have we have word we’re going? We’re using them word perfect where you had toe right down at the bottom, you have to change the bold face down at the bottom of page. Anyway, it sounds like he conflated his do not use list with his reference list that he did want to use like the last four we’re we’re on a separate list and he somehow put the two of them together. All right, we got to take a break, tell us credit card and payment processing. They have a video. Check out the video at tony dahna slash tony tello’s. It explains what the process of businesses switching to tell us is and how you the non-profit that refers them will get fifty percent of the revenue that tello’s urns that’s passive revenue for you your organization. Each month it talks about their one hundred percent satisfaction rate. They have a price match guarantee, but that’s in the video, but for non-profit radio listeners, you get way beyond a mere price match. If if tell us, can’t help, you’re the first referred business is by saving the money, not just matching but saving. Then you get that two hundred fifty dollars, that you’ve heard me talk about, so worth it for you very likely tell us we’ll be able to save the money, but just in case not you’re protected and so is the business. Really, because it’s still still then is helping you. In the video covers, free switching to tell us they have a ninety day easy out but tell us has a hundred percent satisfaction rate, so they’re not gonna need not gonna need the easy out ninety days. That means there and it’s free, but they’re not going to eat it, but it is there, but they’re not gonna need it. Think about the businesses that make sense for you to refer and check out the video at tony dot m a slash tony tell us now, back to dennis miller and his book, a guide to recruiting next ceo let’s continue our joint ajanta dennis okay, so we’ve checked references, references and this and that we’re bringing some people in were like site tours and what their meeting some of the staff now too, and maybe even some of some of the people who are getting our services no, what we worked a man don’t do that metoo staff until they are having a place where we don’t really know sexuality you don’t. You don’t really want the staff on my opinion on a ceo level. Uh, they have to pick the ceo if it’s another level? Certainly if it’s achieve opening office of chief financial officer it’s totally appropriate to have other members of the executive team meet with them. The finer who’s a better vet culture that’s line. Okay, but on a ceo though you are make it clear that the board is making the decision and i would not have staff involved on interviewing until all right. So who are they meeting that in thiss day when they’re going to visit the visit the site? Well, so many have gone to the search committee. Obviously, there is no one else to meet except the entire board. So if you’re talking about the ceo, which is what? We are way wrong that once a search committee has made decision before on offers made it’s what the search committee wants to do doesn’t really have any authority to itself. You wantto search committee should be making a recommendation to the entire board and in many cases, and i will advise us is have that final ceo or in the case where this too close candidates committed meet the entire board may be on the same day, you know, spend a little time with each one. Um, if if there’s one that’s clearly, uh, the person that everybody wants don’t waste the time of having to feel you have to bring a second one and you give it someone hope when is when they’re not probably going to be selected but i have an interesting story, tony, that you listen. May one here, uh, about a year ago we did a search for a ceo and the search committee had him ranked wanted to have this ah, woman rank one in a guy number two. And i had agreed with that recommendation thought it was the best way of going. And by the time those two candidates came in to meet with the entire board and this is an unusual situation ah, the board ended up going with the number two candidate and not the number one candidate and some things came up in discussions. Then i think at the end of day they made the right decision. So don’t forget the board has a final hiring authority. They delegate that that a search committee to search committee xero recommended candidates, but do not hire a ceo from a search committee on ly they must meet the entire board. Have you ever heard of co ceos? Yeah, i have and i found it never. Well, couple times it rarely works there. It works in a case where today there’s a lot of mergers and acquisitions, so both people take on the role of co ceo won, they have responsibility for maybe certain geography one than another o once focus more on one thing before not tow have it. I think coz ceos is like koh board chairs. It doesn’t make a feeling that anybody’s really in charge. Um, i’m working with an organization right now out in california because we do certainly national searches as well as in canada and, you know, there’s a transition going on and is this it the heart organization? It’s important to know who’s in charge? So if it has to happen and you’re particularly the merger, can you have it? Yes, but ideally it sooner than later. It’s only a transition. You can’t have a co ceo doesn’t work. I’ve seen coach, chief development officer and it doesn’t work either. I mean, i think someone has to be in charge. So that’s my opinion. Okay, way explored co ceos with jean takagi, so if anyone wants teo, get more on that. That was the main nineteenth twenty seventeen show with jean ok, alright, we, uh we it’s time to negotiate an offer we were ah, we’ve selected our top one you like guards, guidestar they have i don’t know if you mentioned i know them. Guide star has a has a good salary guide comes out every year. So it’s it’s current but you have other studies that you like? Yeah, a couple of things we have a good sense of what the marketplaces like different geography, maybe waken use guide star and i i like the organization well, but here’s the palm and it’s not guide, says the bomb is that usually the data that’s in there where you have the five highest, complicated employees? It’s probably two years old, even if it says two thousand sixteen and you’re in seventeen, it may have been, you know well, about a june of two thousand fifteen, so i don’t rely upon that nestle as a guide for making offer. I know what the organization is looking to pay. I know what what the sally is. People that are looking and then we i advise uh, i’m involved in every ceo, so i advise my client is what i think it’s going to take to get the person i’ve seen clients do salary surveys using geiser and other things that committee from other compensations raised there’s nothing wrong with it, but what you don’t get from that, you don’t know, uh, what the performance of the organization has been you don’t know how well they’ve done. You don’t know what, how well they’ve done with fund-raising, you know, you don’t know much about him other than what the total budget is. So on one of the advantages of a search for meditation now based upon the work they’re doing what what the rate is to attract some money and that’s kind of what we do. Okay, let’s, spend our last couple minutes. Ah, you know, you just got it by the book because there’s a lot more about negotiating the offer in the book, but i want to spend last couple minutes, just about two minutes or so on on onboarding this’s a board responsive board responsibility. Well, it’s a big thing. I mean, you know, if you talk to ceos, i mean half of them have never been on border. So what does? What does he mean by sort of onboarding candidate? Well, uh, our onboarding onboarding if you don’t get onboarding you get hired and then you start and then you go geez, i don’t know this is the way itwas, you know, you’re not supported in your new job. So dahna whatyou onboarding were first to the idea of preparing a ceo to adjust to the new social, cultural and professional components of the new role and or to the board here, really very important that i be some type of onboarding process um, so as example here, here’s some things you would want to be thinking about what onboarding here is, um, let’s be clear. So both the board and the ceo and again, you could say the same thing about a ceo or cfo. What she development altum same thing here is what are the expectations of each other? Clearly that’s gonna come up during entry puss, but that needs to be known. How often does the board chair want to communicate to the ceo? Did they want to meet monthly? Did they want have a phone conversation on every other friday did they want emails or not emails that they want to meet for breakfast? Um, what does the board want the ceo to accomplish in the first thirty days or sixty days, or maybe one hundred eighty days? Uh, what the cultural issues or financial is that the organization is facing, um, what senior members of the team may have some performances the watch out for who had the key stakeholders outside the organization like donors of all tears that you want to see how to make sure that building wishes, perhaps maybe with a local congress person or a member of the senate assembly here. Dennis, we’ve got to leave it there. There’s too much. All right, keep a melissa. Thank you, tony, for this. I appreciate you and all your happy holiday season and the great thank you so much, dennis. Same for you. Get the book. It is a guide to recruiting your next ceo. You’ll find it at dennis c miller dot com and you’ll find him at dennis c miller next week. Happy new year. There is no live show affiliate listeners. You are covered. Of course we’re going to replay zombie. Loyalists. If you missed any part of today’s show, i beseech you, find it on tony martignetti dot com were supported by pursuant online tools for small and midsize non-profits data driven and technology enabled. Tony dahna slash pursuant weinger sepa is guiding you beyond the numbers. Wagner cps dot com appaloosa accounting software designed for non-profits non-profit wizard dot com and tell us credit card and payment processing, your passive revenue stream. Tony dahna may slash tony tell us our creative producers, claire meyerhoff, slam sam, sam the slam liebowitz is the line producer show social media is by susan chavez, and this very cool music is by scott stein of brooklyn’s. Thank you for that information, scotty with me next week for non-profit radio. Big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent. Go out and be great. What’s not to love about non-profit radio tony gets the best guests check this out from seth godin this’s the first revolution since tv nineteen fifty and henry ford nineteen twenty it’s the revolution of our lifetime here’s a smart, simple idea from craigslist founder craig newmark insights orn presentation or anything? People don’t really need the fancy stuff they need something which is simple and fast. When’s the best time to post on facebook facebook’s andrew noise nose at traffic is at an all time hyre on nine a, m or p m so that’s, when you should be posting your most meaningful post here’s aria finger ceo of do something dot or ge young people are not going to be involved in social change if it’s boring and they don’t see the impact of what they’re doing. So you got to make it fun and applicable to these young people look so otherwise a fifteen and sixteen year old they have better things to do if they have xbox, they have tv, they have their cell phones me dar is the founder of idealist took two or three years for foundation staff to sort of dane toe add an email address card, it was like it was phone. This email thing is right and that’s, why should i give it away? Charles best founded donors choose dot or ge somehow they’ve gotten in touch kind of off line as it were on dh and no two exchanges of brownies and visits and physical gift. Mark echo is the founder and ceo of eco enterprises. You may be wearing his hoodies and shirts. Tony talked to him. Yeah, you know, i just i i’m a big believer that’s not what you make in life. It zoho, you know, tell you make people feel this is public radio host majora carter. Innovation is in the power of understanding that you don’t just put money on a situation expected to hell. You put money in a situation and invested and expected to grow and savvy advice for success from eric sacristan. What separates those who achieve from those who do not is in direct proportion to one’s ability to ask others for help. The smartest experts and leading thinkers air on tony martignetti non-profit radio big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent.