Case Studies and Articles

Improving Success Rates for the Nonprofit Organization

Improving Success Rates for the Nonprofit Organization

Improving Success Rates for Nonprofit Organizations


The key to success for a nonprofit organization’s development officer is to go back to the fund-raiser’s core role. That is to say, improve relationships with donor-clients and develop an extensive knowledge of the charity’s role in the community. Learn enough about current and planned gifting strategies to know when to insert the charity into a client-donor’s financial and estate plan, but do not feel that you must know all the tax and financial tools used. Instead, turn to those professionals who provide the technical expertise on integrating gifts into financial plans and encourage client-donors to seek out those advisors who view the big picture. Become more efficient in conserving the social capital of your donors by learning that every transaction, whether it be a sale of a business or farm, shifting from growth stocks to income mutual funds, or transitioning a family business to heirs is an opportunity to help the donor meet financial goals and still provide needed support for your organization. Only after personal security and family succession issues are resolved will the donor feel that they can address questions about charitable gifts. If the fund-raiser places the family at risk, there is increased opportunity that gifts will not be forthcoming and the ever increasing potential for adverse litigation starts to be a major concern. Disinherited heirs are an unforgiving lot and when they are not made aware of the scope and intent of entire estate plan they can create huge obstacles causing nothing but grief and ill will. To that end, I like to encourage client-donors to create a written family financial philosophy and convey those concepts to their heirs.

If you would like to do joint seminars or workshops on planned giving or estate planning for your board, professional advisers or donors, we have technical resources and materials available to nonprofit organizations to make those strategic alliances more effective. We can help you prepare software presentations with PowerPointâ„¢ and can help you acquire the hardware to present your own seminars to clients and donors. If you do not have the software to evaluate either a CRT or planned giving options, we provide a preliminary analysis for CRAT, SCRUT, NICRUT, NIMCRUT, CLAT, CLUT, CGA and PIF scenarios as a professional courtesy, give us a call.

©Vaughn W. Henry, 1997, 2001


FOR YOUR OWN CRT SCENARIO or try your own at Donor Direct. Please note — there’s much more to estate and charitable planning than simply running software calculations, but it does give you a chance to see how the calculations affect some of the design considerations. This is not “do it yourself brain surgery”. When is a CRUT superior to a CRAT? Which type of CRT is best used with which assets? Although it may be counter-intuitive, sometimes a lower payout CRUT makes more sense and pays more total income to beneficiaries. Why? When to use a CLUT vs. CLAT and the traps in each lead trust. Which tools work best in which planning scenarios? Check with our office for solutions to this alphabet soup of planned giving tools.

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