Golden Rule of Stewardship | npENGAGE

Golden Rule of Stewardship

By on Oct 4, 2011


The best source for your next gift is the person who gave you your last gift. Sounds easy right?

But according to the Fundraising Effectiveness Project (FEP), in 2008 for every $6 raised by charities, they lost $5 through attrition and the 2009 numbers didn’t look any better – with $6 lost through attrition for ever $4.50 raised. If your losses are outpaced by your gains, how much are you actually accomplishing?

The longer you keep your donors and cultivate them effectively, the more they will give over time. As advocates, volunteers, through upgraded gifts, legacy investments and sustained giving. Two simple words can ensure you’re getting off on the right foot: thank you. We all like to think we’re showing donors how much we appreciate their generosity, but there are some simple steps you can follow to master the art of appreciation:

  • Make sure your thank you is prompt, accurate and sincere. Try to acknowledge a gift in a meaningful way within 24-48 hours of receipt.
  • Be transparent and provide insight as to how the gift was used. Show the gift in action and detail results. If possible include a personal touch, whether it’s a photo of your founder or someone the organization has helped through the mission.
  • Acknowledge that the gift will be used as the donor intended – this is key.

Interested in learning more? Join us at today’s Convio Summit for the Golden Rule of Stewardship (2:45 p.m. Harborside Saloon E) or flip through the slides below.  A simple “thank you” can be the spark that lights your moves management efforts.


When she was just 26 years old, Rachel Muir founded Girlstart, a non-profit organization dedicated to empowering girls in math, science, engineering and technology. She was told as a child that girls are not good at math and science. One day, a major light bulb went off over her head and she decided to do something. She jumped in and started Girlstart in the living room of her apartment with $500 and a credit card.  Several years later she had raised over 10 million dollars and was featured on Oprah, CNN, and the Today show.  She veered away from the typical ED or CEO titles, and her business cards said, Rachel Muir, Girlstart, Fearless Leader.

A winner of Oprah Winfrey’s Use Your Life award, Rachel is a three time finalist for Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award, was named “Outstanding Fundraising Executive of the Year” by the Association of Fundraising Professionals, and one of Fast Company Magazines “Fast 50″ Champions of Innovation.

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