One of Arts to Grow’s favorite blogger Beth Kanter published a guest post by Paul Connolly, senior partner and chief client services officer at TCC Group, a national management consulting firm that provides planning, evaluation, and capacity-building services to funders, nonprofits, and corporate citizenship programs.
When thinking about fundraising, many nonprofits and funders believe in the old adage, “Give a person a fish, and you feed him for a day; teach a person to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.” Most nonprofits implore: “Just fund a development director position for us, and it will pay for itself in a year,
enabling us not just to survive but to thrive.” Fundraising advisors encourage this support too. At the Council on Foundations annual conference in April, Dan Pallotta, author of Uncharitable: How Restraints on Nonprofits Undermine Their Potential, proclaimed, “We should be capitalizing on the multiplication potential by funding the fundraising operations that can fund the programs.” He contended that investment—whether it’s in a major gift campaign, a planned giving or special event
program, or the expansion of development staff—consistently generates a positive return.
The case for fortifying nonprofits’ fundraising capability seems like a no-brainer. But is it? According to a new study that TCC Group is conducting of the Packard Foundation’s support for nonprofit capacity-building activities, the answer is no. …