I’m not a big fan of special events as fundraisers.

They’re usually labor-intensive and generate very little income.  Yet so many nonprofit organizations think that’s the way to go.

I was talking with a Development Director recently and found out that she’s doing a lot of things right.  She understands the importance of building relationships with donors.  She has a major donor program. She’s got a planned giving program ready to roll out, but she doesn’t have time to work on either of them because she’s too busy with her fundraising events.  I wanted to scream.

She needs to completely reverse her priorities!  Or convince her ED and Board to do so.

If she spent more time on major gifts and planned giving, her organization would be way better off!  She’d be raising more money and drawing donors closer to the organization.

Instead, she’s on the special event hamster wheel, wasting her time on transactional events – events where people pay for the ticket to the event and don’t give a flip about the mission of the organization.

There are instances where special events can be very worthwhile.  I’ll be posting over the next several days about these.


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