Why Do Board Members Give?
In a study we did for a major institution, Board members were asked (in a confidential survey) what was most important in prompting or motivating their gifts to the organization.
The results will not surprise you. It’s pretty much the same in every Board assessment we do. It will almost certainly be the same in your organization.
(1) Belief in the mission of the organization (your service and how you touch lives) and confidence in your future vision were rated “important” and “very important” by everyone.
(2) It’s my responsibility as a Board member was ranked as “important” by virtually everyone— but of interest, very few rated it as “very important.” (Where are we failing in letting board members know it is indeed their very important responsibility?)
Other high ratings had to do with the importance of the work and service (back to mission) of the institution.
Items receiving the lowest marks will likely not surprise you either.
I’m keeping a promise to someone
To pay back for my own good fortune
It feels good
Peer pressure (rated the lowest)
There’s a lesson in this. It’s not only true of Board members— the same can be said of most of your major donors.
They give because they believe in your work and service. They give because of your vision, your dreams, and the magic you perform. They give because they believe you are changing lives and saving lives.