#13 | Are we creating the illusion of meaningful relationships with our donors?

Leesa Harwood has spent nearly three decades as a fundraising professional in the UK and US. She now owns By the Waves Charity Consulting. As we are accustomed to doing on this show, Leesa shared some of the difficult questions that she believes we are avoiding in the nonprofit sector.

Leesa recognizes three types of organizations: those that wouldn’t want to be bothered with such difficult questions, those that believe they have tactical issues to address, and those that recognize that tactical issues are symptoms of a root cause. This third category of organizations would be most inclined to ask the difficult questions that Leesa and I discussed.

Here are some of the thought-provoking questions that we discussed:

  • Does tension between mission drift and donor intent reflect flawed planning that hasn’t incorporated the donor into the process soon enough?

  • Have organizations created the illusion of a meaningful relationship with their donors?

  • Will direct giving platforms ultimately beat fundraisers at their own game by creating a more meaningful experience for the donor?

Anyone who might like to continue this conversation with Leesa is encouraged to email her at leesaharwood@talktalk.net 

Jason Lewis